This rapidly changing city is the vibrant heart of South Africa. After almost 20 years of decline and decay, Johannesburg is now looking optimistically towards the future. Its centre is smartening up and new hotels and office developments are being constructed at a rapid pace. The hipster-friendly neighbourhood of Maboneng is considered one of the most successful urban-renewal projects in the world.
Experience cosmopolitan spectacle in Johannesburg, the economic heart of South Africa. This modern African metropolis has it all: vibrant nightlife, gourmet dining, live entertainment, couture shopping, forward-thinking arts and culture, the Gautrain, and plenty of tranquil retreats for a perfect all-round getaway. Whether you stay in the off-beat suburb of Melville or opt for luxury hotels in Sandton, you’ll find the perfect Johannesburg accommodation.
Lunch in Sandton, Johannesburg
Top Things To Do
Bill Harrop's Balloon Safari Johannesburg
Johannesburg is one South Africa’s largest cities and a prime tourist destination. Trying to decide what to do in this vibrant city can be overwhelming, so we have come up with a comprehensive list of the best things to do and see in Johannesburg that will guarantee you a fun-filled trip.
Constitution Hill, Johannesburg
Apartheid Museum, Johannesburg
A must visit, The Apartheid Museum, the first of its kind, illustrates the rise and fall of apartheid.
An architectural consortium, comprising several leading architectural firms, conceptualised the design of the building on a seven-hectare stand. The museum is a superb example of design, space and landscape offering the international community a unique South African experience.
The exhibits have been assembled and organised by a multi-disciplinary team of curators, film-makers, historians and designers. They include provocative film footage, photographs, text panels and artefacts illustrating the events and human stories that are part of the horrific period in the South African history, known as apartheid.
Constitution Hill is a living museum that tells the story of South Africa’s journey to democracy. The site is a former prison and military fort that bears testament to South Africa’s turbulent past and, today, is home to the country’s Constitutional Court, which endorses the rights of all citizens.
There is perhaps no other site of incarceration in South Africa that imprisoned the sheer number of world-renowned men and women as those held within the walls of the Old Fort, the Women’s Jail and Number Four. Nelson Mandela. Mahatma Gandhi. Joe Slovo. Albertina Sisulu. Winnie Madikizela-Mandela. Fatima Meer. They all served time here. But the precinct also confined tens of thousands of ordinary people during its 100-year history: men and women of all races, creeds, ages and political agendas; the indigenous and the immigrant; the everyman and the elite. In this way, the history of every South African lives here.
Constitution Hill, Johannesburg
Bill Harrop’s Balloon Safari
Bill Harrop's Balloon Safari
If you’re going to do it – do it in unassailable style with Bill Harrop’s Balloon Safari. Its sunrise, the silence of flight is punctuated only by the occasional blast of the powerful burners and the faint call of a bird or animal far beneath. The thrill is indescribable.
You’re hovering gently above the tree tops of the beautiful Magalies River Valley, or drifting majestically high above the Magaliesberg range in the Cradle of Humankind World Heritage site, just 45 km north of Johannesburg’s northern suburbs, a region boasting some of the best ballooning weather in the world. The exceptional peace of this unique and almost supernatural view of the world will forever remain as a truly cherished memory.
After landing, savour a delectable and generous champagne breakfast at the well established, traditionally exquisite and beautifully appointed Clubhouse, Pavilion and Restaurant, where you’ll be filled with the warmest of memories.
Professional pilots, attentive crew, immaculately maintained equipment, 5 aviation safety awards, make this longest established licensed Balloon Airline in southern Africa the choice of the well informed discerning individual traveller or corporate group.
Open Top Bus Tour
Hop onto the open top red bus and explore the City of Gold, as she is affectionately known. With over 16 stops, and taking you to over 20 of Johannesburg’s top attractions, the bus allows you to hop-on and hop-off at your leisure.
Hop on the Johannesburg Green Tour at our main departure point in Rosebank and explore the leafy suburbs around Zoo Lake stopping at all top attractions, including Zoo lake, the Johannesburg Zoo and the Military Museum, before reaching Constitution Hill. Change here to the Red City Tour and continue your journey around the inner city visiting the “Roof of Africa” viewing deck on the 50th floor of the Carlton Center, the James Hall Museum of Transport, Gold Reef City Theme Park, the Apartheid Museum, the SAB World of Beer or the Origins Center at Wits before returning back to Constitution Hill and ultimately back to Rosebank. You’ll soon see why Joburg is not only considered Africa’s economic playground but also one of the most wooded cities in the world.
Johannesburg Open Bus Tour
Safari – Kruger National Park
Wildlife in Johannesburg
From Johannesburg, South Africa’s biggest city, you don’t need to go far to get out into the bush. There are plenty of safari parks and game reserves near Johannesburg, all within a four-hour drive of the city, including the world renowned Kruger National Park. Day trippers can head to reserves just an hour’s drive away, whilst those looking to spend a few days on safari can go further afield.
When to visit
The best times to visit Johannesburg are from January to May when the weather is relatively warm and dry.
Johannesburg is reachable with many international carriers flying daily.
How to get around
Although the city offers multiple public transit and taxi options, the best way to get around Johannesburg is by car. Johannesburg’s public transit and shuttles – especially those that carry tourists, excluding sightseeing tour buses – are notoriously prone to robberies, while taxis and minibus taxis are known for their confusing hand signals and unlicensed, irresponsible drivers.
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