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I Love Rivonia Because …
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I Love Rivonia Because …

Hi, I’m Jill Marais from Rivonia Bed & Breakfast in Rivonia. Rivonia IS BEST KNOWN FOR its restaurants and IT industry. GET YOUR PICTURE TAKEN AT Lilliesleaf Farm in Rivonia, where Nelson Mandela and ANC members used to meet and hide out in the apartheid era. THE BEST spring PICTURES CAN BE TAKEN when our jacarandas are in bloom. OTHER HAPPY SNAPS AT Mandela Square in Sandton City. WHEN THE WEATHER'S GOOD, I LIKE TO walk along the Sandspruit where an enterprising resident of Rivonia has created a lovely walk for families, dogs and for those who just want their own compan...
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Fresh Earth Food Store – soul food comes to Jo’burg
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Fresh Earth Food Store – soul food comes to Jo’burg

I'm sitting at a wooden table in an alcove amidst the buzz of the café that lies to one side of the food store cum health shop that is the Fresh Earth Food Store, exclaiming over my breakfast. I can count on one hand the number of eateries* where I can hope to find something on the menu, like my choice of French Toast on wheat-free bread, with 'real' free-range eggs and real maple syrup (the Canadian kind not cheap, flavoured syrup). This particular dish also comes with huge slices of haloumi cheese. You have no idea how good it was. Heart-warming stuff. Add to that the African-brewed organ...
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I Love Kyalami Because …
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I Love Kyalami Because …

Hi, we're Sandy and Peter from Kyalami. Kyalami IS BEST KNOWN FOR it’s Motor Racing Circuit that used to be home to the South African Formula 1 Grand Prix, as well as being the ‘Horse Capital’ of the world with a vibrant horse industry and approximately 5500 horses within the Greater Kyalami Conservancy of 42km². The conservancy is host to 360 events each year with five major international competitions, as well as the world famous SA Lipizzaners. GET YOUR PICTURE TAKEN AT at the Kyalami Castle that offers 360° views of Sandton and Joburg’s skyline with the Magalisberg in the distance...
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When in Joburg: great spots at which to eat
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When in Joburg: great spots at which to eat

I feel the need to qualify right away that I am not a resident of Jozi. I used to be. Joburg was where I met and lived with my now husband. Those were the initial heady days of our relationship, and I loved the vibey, fast-paced, hectic, bright and overly focused environment that was the major city of South Africa. Its hustle and sharp-edged tone suited us. Each time we return it is something of a culture shock for me. Cape Town, where I now live, may as well be another country the two cities are so dissimilar. Johannesburg surges on a tide, where Cape Town gently melts into your psyche; Jo...
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When in Joburg
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When in Joburg

Johannesburg is not a wee city by any stretch of the imagination. It's an economic powerhouse , the provincial capital of Gauteng, has the largest economy in Sub-Saharan Africa, and is the world's largest city that is not built on a river, lake or coastline, according to Wiki. It is often perceived by those who do not live there to be something of a concrete jungle in which crime of every form and description is rife. Some of this must be true as it features in the Real Clear World's top ten most dangerous cities in the world not at war (quite a mouthful and not necessarily a creditable ...
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Liliesleaf Farm Photographs
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Liliesleaf Farm Photographs

On a recent visit to Johannesburg my mom and I decided to spend a morning taking a tour at the Liliesleaf farm in the leafy suburb of Rivonia. I had heard of Liliesleaf before but this was a learning and historical experience unlike anything I have experienced in a while. Liliesleaf farm was key to the political and military policies and strategies of the ANC during Apartheid and the farm has been restored and turned into an interactive exhibit which has been open to the public since 2008. We were taken on a tour by an experienced guide who was both knowledgeable and happy to answer our bar...
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I Love Melville Because …
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I Love Melville Because …

Hi, I’m Andrew Cleland from Melville in Johannesburg. Melville IS BEST KNOWN FOR its vibrant night life, trendy coffee shops and variety of eating joints. GET YOUR PICTURE TAKEN AT 4th Ave, between 7th & 8th Street, because there is a great view of the Joburg skyline in the background. THE BEST daytime PICTURES CAN BE TAKEN AT anyone of the following spots - the  Johannesburg Botanical Gardens, the Johannesburg Zoo, Melville Koppies, or stop at The Westcliff for High Tea. OTHER HAPPY SNAPS AT The Hillside House, in our lovely indigenous garden. WHEN THE WEATHER'S GOOD, I...
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I Love Benoni Because …
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I Love Benoni Because …

Hi, I’m Michelle Smith from Benoni on Gauteng's East Rand. BENONI IS BEST KNOWN FOR being the City of Lakes. GET YOUR PICTURE TAKEN AT Ebotse Golf and Country Estate, which is a picturesque golf estate around the Rynfield Lake. The estate makes the most of its natural environment and includes boating, fishing, cycling, jogging and walking trails. THE BEST nature PICTURES CAN BE TAKEN in the fields at Bullfrog Pan when the cosmos flowers are in full bloom. The pan is a wonderful spot to escape city life and it boasts over 150 species of bird including the African purple swamp hen, ...
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Top things to do in Joburg – residents give insider tips
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Top things to do in Joburg – residents give insider tips

Whether you call it Jozie, Jo'burg, or just plain Johannesburg, if you live here you love it, whilst the rest of the country talks about it in hushed tones as a place riddled with crime and best avoided, especially at peak hour, which is most of the day. A visit to Jo'burg is a crash course in staying aware, all the time. But if you want to experience a real metropolitan buzz then you can't beat it. Time speeds up. So does the traffic, the number of advertising billboards, the speed at which traffic does (and sometimes doesn't) get around. Top things to do in Joburg... There is so mu...
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The cutest little Indie Coffee Shop in Africa – Wolves
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The cutest little Indie Coffee Shop in Africa – Wolves

Wolves Café in Illovo, Johannesburg, is the brainchild of three friends and creatives, and is undoubtedly one of the hippest hangouts in the city. One of the talented owners, Angie Batis, is not only the stellar creative force behind a popular blog as well as the Creative Head of a well-known ad agency; she also bakes the coolest cupcakes and delectables for Wolves. Co-owner and husband, Shane Durrant, is the lead singer of popular local band, ‘Desmond and the Tutus,’ and together with a friend, they create the magic that Wolves is known for. Furnished eclectically with mismatching v...
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Moyo at Zoo Lake
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Moyo at Zoo Lake

As mentioned in an earlier blog post, I flew up to Johannesburg last Friday for my brothers birthday weekend and my Dad joined us, flying up from the new King Shaka International Airport in Ballito.  On Saturday morning I headed the quest for getting out of the house and doing something ‘cultural’ and touristy and Zoo Lake was where we ended up.  Now, I am not scared of a mid morning snack and nor is my Dad - safety in numbers I always say - so we put that option to the rest of the party and after a unanimous vote decided that tea and cake it would be! On arrival at Zoo Lake we were...
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Doing the touristy thing at Zoo Lake in Johannesburg
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Doing the touristy thing at Zoo Lake in Johannesburg

I found myself at Cape Town International Airport on Friday afternoon boarding the 16h00 Kulula flight to Lanseria International Airport - a weekend up to Egoli for my brother’s birthday.  My brother has lived in Johannesburg on and off for a number of years and I’ve visited a few times but have never really done the touristy thing.  So, this time I wanted to at least see something that the city is known for. I'd decided that the Walter Sisulu Botanical Gardens would be our nominated tourist visit but we couldn’t find our way there and en route drove past a sign for Zoo Lake so we opted for...
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Visit the Irene Dairy Farm for a farm style breakfast or five litre bucket of milk!
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Visit the Irene Dairy Farm for a farm style breakfast or five litre bucket of milk!

I have visited Irene in Northern Gauteng a handful of times and one of my most favourite spots is the century old Irene Dairy Farm.  The farm started operating in 1889 and now, five generations down the line it’s still the van der Byl family at the helm. The farm was originally purchased by an Alois Nellmapius and after naming the village for his daughter (Irene means peace) he set about creating Irene Estate.  Farmlands were expanded but only five years later the land was sold to Albertus van der Byl and its still belongs to that family.  Albertus built up the dairy herd, planted hundreds ...
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Mountain Sanctuary Park – effortless time-out
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Mountain Sanctuary Park – effortless time-out

The Magaliesberg makes one want to write a poem that starts: 'I saw the Magaliesberg'. There is nothing quite like it. Stressed out Gautengers use this part of the world, but an hour and a half's drive from Johannesburg, as a retreat; the hills, kloofs, mountains and springs a way to re-connect with themselves, and nature. It's not surprising to find that connection almost immediately when out in the open-skied, mountainous surrounds. This mountain range is one of the oldest in the world – roughly 100 times older even than Everest. They're at least 2 400 million years old, to be more pre...
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Afternoon Tea at Rosemary Hill Farm
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Afternoon Tea at Rosemary Hill Farm

I'll admit it, I’m a complete tea snob.  I don’t mean that I have to drink a fine Ceylon or anything like that but I do love my tea.  I have a cup in the morning and a cup as soon as I get home in the evening and it must always, always be made in a pot.  I’ve been told I make the best tea. My very dear friend, and fellow tea lover, Vanessa will vouch for this - on any visit from Cape Town to her home in Ballito she will announce ‘Helen will make the tea because Helen makes the best tea’ and she’s absolutely correct.  I make the best tea ... I also have a sweet tooth and naturally, te...
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