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What travellers are saying
- There is so much information to absorb here and much of it very emotional, but an excellent stop and kind of a must do while in Johannesburg.Written 7 August 2022This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
- I am almost always happy with my travels on the Gautrain. The train is always clean, the stations are immaculate, the staff helpful and professional. The train pretty much arrives on time and one can get to your destination on time without having to deal with traffic. The greatest pleasure is to be "whishing" by faster than the cars on the freeway.
The challenge with the Gautrain is to know what kind of transport one can get at the station you arrive at. I have found that while the buses are good, well managed and have good drivers that to rely on the buses is potentially problematic (there are no buses on the weekends, there are road blocks and strikes..). I then tend to rely on Uber but at some stations the Uber drivers cannot park close to the station due to vandalism by the taxi drivers, Sandton and Hatfield are particularly bad in this regard. If you are "in the know" you can walk a few blocks from these stations and still get an Uber but this is not ideal for the uninitiated.
I think that it would be great if the walkways from the stations were nicer - Sandton shopping center is close to the station but the five minute walk to the shops not wonderful. Rosebank is good in this respect and this was the reason I chose to go to Rosebank on this trip as I had my granddaughter with me. She and a friend and the friends mother. We went to Rosbank for coffee and cake. Kids had not been on the train before - so this was very exciting. Staff on the train were very kind to the kids.Written 24 July 2022This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
- 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 2022This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
- As a South African, I brought my partner from New Zealand to Soweto on his very first trip to South Africa this August. Outside of the Hector Pieterson Memorial we stumbled across a volunteer/guide by the name of Poloko. He explained in amazing detail the history of Soweto and the events of the 1976 shootings/protests. He was extremely friendly, kind, jovial and knowledgeable on not only the story of Hector Pieterson, but went above and beyond and took us on a personal walk around tour of the Vilikazi Precinct and surrounds. Poloko taught my partner some local Sowetan slang like "shap" and "yebo" to use to greet the locals back as we walked through the streets. In total, Poloko spent about 2.5 hours giving us his undivided attention and valuable firsthand knowledge on the history of Soweto. We journeyed from the Hector Pieterson Memorial, to the spot where he was shot, to Mandela House and finally ending at Archbishop Tutu's house. Poloko took great photos of us walking Vilakazi Street and taking in the vibe of Soweto. What an amazing, memorable and emotional experience that was only amplified by Poloko's superb hospitality.
Soweto was amazing, and I would highly recommend contacting Poloko for the best possible experience. His details are +27 73 151 7270.Written 5 August 2022
- 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
- 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
- A great museum with a surprising amount to see - cannons, planes, submarines - all sorts of things. We spent 2 hours there, and could have spent longer (bypassed some of the photos, and smaller exhibits) but left because we were doing the zoo (next door) in the same afternoon. Would well recommend.Written 8 April 2022
- 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
- It was a nice place to visit, but you really had to look to find unique things or really good deals. Don't be afraid to barter!Written 14 March 2020
- Fab market but not the cheapest, there are definitely better prices other places in Joburg but overall still a great vibe and lots of cool stuffWritten 20 February 2020
- Lovely mall in a safe location with nighttime security outdoors. Dining choices at night are outstanding. Daytime shopping experience can be wonderful with several high-end stores. The shops we went in were filled with attentive and knowledgeable sales staff, and security in the mall itself was present. We parked on the street with no problem both daytime and nighttime.Written 21 June 2022
- 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
- Frequented the lounge just before departing from Joburg to Heathrow and the staff were so friendly and helpful. We were treated like royalty. Really enjoyed the atmosphere and the excellent service from receptionist to waitrons. 💯💯💯💯Written 16 June 2022
- We had a great day at Scibono.
The adults, teens and youngsters all enjoyed the experience.
Highly recommendedWritten 10 July 2022
- Visiting the Lady of her beautiful house was an absolutely amazing experience; the history; the cracks of the wooden floors; the authenticity, I am still overwhelmed!! I am sending all my friends and family to experience this beauty!!! My phone died half way.... and it was really hard not to touch anything 😀Written 11 June 2022