View over Soweto from Oppenheimer Tower

Things to do in Johannesburg

Johannesburg, also known as Jo’burg or Jozi, has so much to offer. I’m excited to be able to share some of the amazing sights and attractions of my home town with you today:

It was April when I said a final goodbye to Cape Town and left for Johannesburg – on our way to Johanngeorgenstadt. I arrived in Jozi in the evening and was welcomed by a bit of rain. I got lost on the way to fetch my luggage (yes, even though everyone was going the same way – silly me), but eventually found my way .

It was really great seeing my family and friends again, catching up, bonding, spending time together. The time was short but it was better than no time at all.

What to do in Johannesburg

Maboneng

While in Jo’burg, I visited the new trendy Maboneng – “Place of light” in Sotho – also known as The Maboneng Precinct. It is a new, vibrant, hip and happening place. The buildings in this area were purchased by two business men who are now “pimping” it up. Various types of people walk, cycle and hang around here: creatives, corporate figures and students. There’s a market nearby as well as cafés and stores for everything you need and a backpacker’s lodge. Convenient. Like a bit of Cape Town and perhaps New York’s Manhattan, but it is still Johannesburg. From a run down business district to this, it is looking really good.

Credo Mutwa Village & Oppenheimer Tower

Stef joined me in Jo’burg the same week and that Saturday we went to Soweto.

We visited my family, it was actually a surprise that my sister and cousins had planned as a “goodbye and farewell” day. We left the “older crowd” behind and drove off to the Credo Mutwa Village in Jabavu, east of Soweto. Here, from the Oppenheimer Tower you can see where each township in Soweto is located.

On Oppenheim Tower

View over Soweto in the background

View over Soweto from Oppenheimer Tower

It is a cultural village about Credo Mutwa, an artist, writer, and traditional herbalist who painted his predictions about things to come (some which have occurred). It was awesome, educational and entertaining. The guide was a very good speaker with a sense of humour, too.

Guide

Cultural Village

Mandela House

After that we went to the Mandela House in Orlando West, Soweto where Nelson Mandela lived with his family in 1946, the home he referred to as the centre point of his world in The Long Walk to Freedom. It is situated in the well-known Vilakazi street where Archbishop Desmond Tutu once lived as well. I just wish they could have kept it as original as possible. Overall, this was worth a visit and a wonderful display of the legacy and inspiring life of Mr Mandela and his family.

Mmandela House

Kwa Lichaba

This marks the end of our educational outings :-) After an exciting afternoon we all were hungry and headed to KwaLichaba Chisa Nyama Car Wash & Pub for a chilled afternoon and delicious food. (KwaLichaba – Sotho for “the nations”; Chisa nyama you probably know but for those who don’t know, it refers to braaing [grill/barbecue] meat, having a great time with friends and family with good food.) It is a nice and vibey place to hang out with your friends, have a really delicious braai or even book a function. We had a very yummy meal: braaied steak chops and chakalaka.

Group Photo Kwa Lichaba

Delicious Braai Food

On the following Monday Stef and I had planned for a day together at one of our favourite places Gold Reef City, but to our surprise it was closed. I even called to check and it was really and truly closed :-( So, if you ever plan on going to Gold Reef City, do not plan for Monday & Tuesday.

Tuesday we said goodbye to Johannesburg and headed for Johanngeorgenstadt, Stef’s home town.


Here are other magnificent must-see places to visit when you’re in Johannesburg:

You have visited Johannesburg before and know more exciting places to see and visit? Please let us know in the comment section below.

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