Sights & landmarks in Johannesburg

Top Sights in Johannesburg, South Africa

Johannesburg Landmarks

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  • Myo M
    Coquitlam, Canada21 459 contributions
    Really quite a modest-sized house consisting of about 4 rooms which can all be covered by a quick walk-around (except for yes stopping to see the displays), I couldn't help but think though that this very house was "the place" where many of the important decisions of the country's apartheid struggle were made for "about 3 decades" (the entire 1950's when both Nelson & Winnie Mandela resided here up to the early 60's when Nelson Mandela was taken away to prison but his wife & family continued living here all the way through the 70's when Winnie Mandela went through some prison time herself & house arrests right in this house for her role as an apartheid activist). So yes, pretty worthwhile I would say was "getting a feel" of maybe not the whole but a big part of that "defining period" of the country's history (from the post-WW2 to when the Apartheid finally came to an end in the early 90's) by going through the displays from enlarged photos to printed lines on the walls to inscriptions (of some "important years" of the Mandela family) actually outside the house on some bricks of the fence around the yard which is all concrete-covered ground on both front & back sides.

    On a "fairly vibrant" stretch of Vilakazi Street (likely just a regular quiet street away from this site though), the visit here also included: a photo-op with a small group of Zulu performers (just outside the front gate after coming back out); getting some nice "souvenirs of Johannesburg" from the shop on the street (pretty much just to the left after coming out); and also getting a "small glimpse" of Archbishop Tutu's house (by going a little further down the street past the souvenir shop as just mentioned). Just somewhat of an inconvenience about this site is its distance from the city center (about a 45-minute taxi ride from the Constitution Hill where I was during the first half of the day going around that fort-prison complex including the walk above the ramparts with some nice views of the city).
    Written 22 July 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • CRLsrating
    677 contributions
    The memorial is very compelling. It was helpful to have a guide who was able to explain the meaning of the running water. A humbling place.
    Written 13 May 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • Myo M
    Coquitlam, Canada21 459 contributions
    A "fort-prison" complex as it once was (now consisting of "3 areas" to see namely No. 4/No. 5 Prisons, the Old Fort & the Women's Prison), the "best part" of my visit here was the walk above the ramparts of the Old Fort on pretty much all four sides of its square-shaped grounds (except on one side with an off-limit stretch of that rampart) with pretty nice views of the Fort right below & the surrounding parts of the city ("quite a bit to the distance" to see) and where are also two "historic cannons" (one of them actually just the way it has been or a similar one having been "on the same spot" since the days of the Boer War over a hundred years ago). In any case, spread out over this "sprawling site" (which covers the three areas & the in-between areas for just short walks from one area to another) are: a number of "museum-like rooms" most notably the room with displays of Gandhi during the time he lived in South Africa (at No. 4/No. 5) & the cell of Mandela during his short stay at this prison before being transferred to Cape Town (at the Old Fort where the cells were usually only for white males); some parts where a "feel of prison" can be felt such as the row of "isolation cells" (all the way at the back of No. 4/No. 5) & the row of "individual cells" for white male prisoners (at the Old Fort); and yes actually somewhat of a surprise I would say being the "lovely garden" (at the Women's Prison). And so, with plenty of items on display in all three areas (mostly "enlarged photos" with their corresponding info texts but also many miscellaneous including some of these interesting "blanket sculptures" seen in some rooms at No. 4/No. 5 likely replicas of those made by the inmates back then), I did actually learn at this site "quite a bit" not just about the life of prisoners here in its operating days but also about those periods of colonial followed by apartheid in the country's history and actually also somewhat of the Boer War (from the info plates above the ramparts of the Old Fort).

    At just a pretty short taxi ride from the Houghton area where I stayed, this site was followed by Mandela's house in Soweto (a compact-sized house museum for way less time needed than this big site although yes it was a long ride of 45 minutes or so getting there from this site at the city center).
    Written 17 July 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • PinkPanthea
    Johannesburg, South Africa222 contributions
    Walk from Tutu's house to Mandela's house and experience this historical street. There's a lot of poverty still in Soweto, and it's sad that for many, not much has changed since democracy has come :(
    Written 29 March 2021
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • EvdWRotterdam
    Rotterdam233 contributions
    We explored the neighbourhood with a guided walking tour, and hugely enjoyed the many beautiful murals and street art in this colourful re-developed neighbourhood.
    Written 25 May 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • Sarah C
    Gloucester, UK797 contributions
    Had a 30 min stop here on an organised tour. The guide, who had lived through the creation of Soweto, the time of the riots etc was interesting and entertaining and interacted with members of the group in a unique way! recommended if you are in the area, but I wouldn't go out of my way to visit.
    Written 10 February 2020
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • KatielouAustralia
    Hobart, Australia1 606 contributions
    This is the site where the Freedom Charter was signed so whilst the square is a bit rundown it is an important historical place with great significance for the townships.
    Written 14 October 2019
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • tonykJ9442AM
    Johannesburg/Gaborone21 contributions
    A good place to relax and have a picnic if you so wish, also catch up on cultural aspects that the African population practices and put forward by the famous Credo Mutwa himself.
    Written 29 July 2018
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • Szenta
    Valencia, Spain46 contributions
    By all means visit Soweto and challenge old stereotypes. Recommend the excellent Mandy Imbizo Tours, run by a local.
    Written 8 June 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • benjamin
    Benjamin, TX20 contributions
    Enjoyed a great Sunday afternoon eating, drinking and buying all kinds of local crafts. This is a must visit if you are looking for a fun Sunday morning or afternoon. The Market on Main closes at 4:30 but there are plenty of other places in the neighborhood that stay open later.
    Written 3 February 2021
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • Larce C
    Johannesburg, South Africa869 contributions
    We attended the International convention of Jehovah's Witnesses. There were 58 000 of us in attendance. The facilities comfortably housed us. The guards were great, however it did get cold due to the open spots of the stadium walls. The bathrooms and parking are very good.
    Written 20 September 2019
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • johnmJ2594PN
    Calgary186 contributions
    This is not just a cycle tour but an experience. This allowed us to see parts of Soweto off the tourist track and also enjoy some culture and some local cuisine.
    Written 24 October 2019
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • African Samurai
    1 contribution
    Charming, cosmopolitan, down to earth and vibrant. A lot of people complain about homelessness and let's face it we live in South Africa is the most unequal society in the world, and Melville is no exception, what I am really proud of is how the Melville community is so inclusive people from different races, economic situations, sexualities all feel free to express themselves in this melting pot. The community also tries their best to support people who are homeless and that's one of the things that make Melville special.❤❤❤ The night life is definitely for people who are down to earth, looking for a relaxed atmosphere and looking for a goodnight out. The cafe's are also awesome. If shopping is your thing, don't forget to check out the charity shops. And remember to be vigilant no matter where you are in Johannesburg🤷🏾‍♂️.
    Written 9 June 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • Chris P
    Shanghai, China4 924 contributions
    While on the Red Bus tour, we stopped here to go to the top to see the views. We were escorted from the bus all the way, which helped with safety. The place is old and a bit run down, but the views were great. Windows a bit dirty and the viewing floor echo-ey.
    Written 29 April 2020
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • Blue
    8 contributions
    For years, The Wilds has been mirred by its history after it fell foul of criminals. These days, any mention of going is immediately met with a "is it safe?"
    As a solo female, I went on a walk by myself and at no time was I concerned.

    Whether you want to chill around the giraffe lawns or follow the paths to explore, you're always reminded you're in Joburg with her iconic skyline. The beautiful colors surround you and the sounds of the birds playing mixed in with sound of nearby traffic - it's a perfect urban escape - somewhere to relax and catch your breath.

    Only downside is the limited parking. Overflow parking is available at the nearby St Johns school and there is a pedestrian bridge to walk across to the park.
    Written 31 July 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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