A massive city and boasting many ‘firsts’, Johannesburg boasts an impressive number of awesome attractions to suit both young and old. First off, the Apartheid Museum is oddly located next to the fun-park thrills of Gold Reef City. This is an essential South African experience which tells the apartheid story with a confronting sensory verve through large, visually stunning displays and excellent audio visual exhibits. For a trip down memory lane or to experience some of South Africa’s sad history, visit the Apartheid Museum.
The Hector Pieterson Memorial is another must visit. Through the use of old photographs and video, this museum tells the chilling story of the 1976 student uprisings against the forced use of Afrikaans in South African schools. The exhibit is stark, haunting and sure to leave you with chills down your spine.
A visit to the Market Theatre complex is a worthwhile way to immerse yourself in some South African culture. It’s Johannesburg’s most popular venue for live theatre, and has been at the forefront of non-racial theatre since 1974. The productions here are absolutely outstanding. With 3 theatres, a restaurant and bar and an art gallery, you’re sure to have a great time!
Founded in the 1930s, Museum Africa is housed in the impressive old Bree Street fruit market. This superb exhibition on the Treason Trials (1956-61), which featured most of the important figures in the ‘new’ South Africa, is a must-see for anyone seeking a better understanding of South Africa’s recent history.
Johannesburg is reinventing itself following the long oppressed years of the apartheid system. This means that artists of all persuasions are emerging and there is an incredibly diverse culture growing and spreading in the country. In Johannesburg, this all culminates in the ‘Arts Alive Festival’ which takes place in September and October each year.
To witness the first place where Nelson Mandela owned a home, visit Alexandra in Johannesburg. It is a rather bustling community and sure to reveal many secrets.
Gold Reef City is a extremely popular and well known theme park which will raise your adrenalin all day on their roller coaster rides. From casino’s to mine exploring, there is something here for everyone. The Planetarium is another Jo’burg favorite! This planetarium has various cosmological programs that have been recommended by locals and travellers alike.
Bustling Soweto is a former township from the times of Apartheid. Starting about 15 km away from the centre of Johannesburg, it comprises some 63 sq. km, where an estimated two million people live – and a must for the visitor to Johannesburg wanting to experience the real South Africa!
Johannesburg also boasts its very own Zoo. The Johannesburg Zoo is one of the treasures of Johannesburg, a source of enjoyment and relaxation for locals and foreign visitors alike. It occupies extensive grounds in central Parktown, boasting numerous tall trees, shimmeringwater features and beautiful walks around the various enclosures. The stars of the show are, of course, the animals and the zoo’s collection is rather impressive!
The animals you will see here include lions, tigers, elephants, gorillas, chimpanzees, sable antelope, bat-eared foxes, polar bears and many other species. Special night tours allow visitors to observe the habits of nocturnal creatures. There are also behind-the-scenes tours that show how the zoo operates and the work that needs to be done to ensure that it functions as a smoothly oiled machine. During holidays the zoo presents special programmes and serves as an educational facility, teaching people about wildlife and the environment.
The list of Johannesburg attractions go on. Other notable attractions include Constitution Hill, Johannesburg art Galley, ABSA Money Museum, Johannesburg Botanic Garden, Nelson Mandela Bridge, Mandela Family Home … and many, many more. For more of Johannesburg attractions please visit Johannesburg Attractions.