Johannesburg Tours, Packages and Budget Safaris
Johannesburg is on the eastern plateau of South Africa and is known as the Highveld. Although the north and west of Johannesburg’s terrain has rolling hills, in contrast the eastern parts are flatter. This city is proudly the economic and cultural center of South Africa. Joburg is also the origin of a large-scale gold and diamond trade. Though much of the city is urbanised and peppered with skyscrapers along busy streets there is plenty to do and see here.
On our Johannesburg Tours you will be able to engage in historical monuments such as the Apartheid Museum. The Kruger National Park is on Joburg’s doorstep with an abundance of wildlife to experience in this famous wildlife sanctuary.
Johannesburg’s weather is true of a sub-tropical highland with dry, sunny days which are followed by late afternoon thunderstorms during Summer. Winter is mild with sunshine and cool nights in June and July. Cold fronts are common and bring chilling southerly winds, so be sure to pack your thermals if you are travelling in Winter.
Tours to South Africa:
South Africa Tours from Johannesburg
Why go on Johannesburg Tours?
Africa’s most exciting, dynamic and cosmopolitan city has an energy that is palpable. While it doesn’t wear its charms on its sleeve, Joburg does have a lot to offer travelers. If you’re planning to either start or end your South Africa tour in Joburg, then read these reasons you should stay a bit longer to experience the city.
1. Explore art galleries and museums
Joburg has a vibrant art scene and a wealth of art galleries showcasing contemporary South African art. The Goodman Gallery, David Krut Projects, Everard Read, Stevenson Gallery and Circa Gallery all have refreshing exhibitions by local artists. The award-winning Wits Art Museum in downtown Joburg is one gallery you shouldn’t overlook.
The city also has excellent museums which give you a glimpse into South Africa’s past. While the powerful Apartheid Museum is worth spending several hours in. Constitution Hill is the site of an Apartheid-era prison which once incarcerated Nelson Mandela and Gandhi.
2. Go walking through the inner city
Joburg’s inner city saw a massive decline in the 1990s, but the past few years regeneration projects are uplifting the city and encouraging students, artists and creative businesses to move back in. The best way to see the inner city is to walk its streets on a guided tour, thereby learning it’s history while you walk. Gerald Garner runs walking tours in Joburg and has an amazing knowledge of the city, his stories also really bring its history to life.
3. Hang out in hip Maboneng
Maboneng Precinct is one of Joburg’s hippest neighbourhoods and best represents the rebuilding of the city. It houses art studios, a cinema, fashion and design stores, a yoga center, a hotel, buzzing bars and restaurants. This area is certainly a must-see. Food choices range from Afro-Asian to Ethiopian fare in the space of a few blocks. Market on Main takes place every Sunday and this neighbourhood market sells everything from food to vintage clothing.
4. Have historical fun
Visit Gold Reef City, a theme park with a ‘gold rush town’ appeal. Complete with a main street which resembles a street in the city during the end of the 19th century, when Johannesburg was founded. Rides include “The Miner’s Revenge” which gives you an adrenaline infused history lesson. In addition they offer a tour of the old gold mine the theme park was built on.
5. Visit Soweto
Soweto is South Africa’s most famous township and a popular place for travelers to visit while learning more about the city’s past. Tours take in sights such as the church that provided a safe haven for freedom fighters, along with the Hector Pieterson Museum which documents the student uprisings of 1976.
6. Go back in time at the Cradle of Humankind
Travel back in time to the beginning of human civilisation at the Cradle of Humankind. This area just northwest of Joburg is a World Heritage Site where some of the world’s oldest hominid fossils were excavated in the dark chambers of the Sterkfontein Caves. This fascinating experience allows you to explore the caves and learn more about early humans.
7. Take time out in green spaces
Joburg has one of the world’s largest man-made urban forests, with over 10 million trees. This garden is spread throughout the city and its green spaces range from the Botanical Gardens, where thousands of rose bushes and indigenous trees grow, to the Melville Koppies Nature Reserve. For a real wilderness experience, head to the Klipriviersberg Nature Reserve which is only 10 kilometers away from the city center. This 680-hectare reserve offers 20 kilometers of hiking trails through hills and valleys that are home to zebra, wildebeest, red hartebeest and over 200 species of birds. Yes, this is truly a safari right in the city!
While only a few hours away from Kruger National Park, Durban and the border of Mozambique. Johannesburg makes an ideal place to begin or end South African Tours. Many of our overland tours start or end in the city and these range from short four-day trips to Kruger or longer 46-day trips to Nairobi.