Am travelling to Johannesburg at the end of October with a female companion. From there we will be doing the Garden route to Cape town and plan to spend our last 3 or 4 night s there before flying back to the UK. We are reasonably streetwise but would like to ask for advice about sightseeing in Joburg. Is it safe? Normally do the sightseeing bus but wonder if we should look at perhaps hiring a private taxi?? As always, we want to se the real way of life but at the same time, keep safe. Advice please. karen
Provided you take some basic street wise precautions you will be just fine. You don't mention where you stay but there is a free shuttle bus from Sandton and Melrose Arch to the main bus departure point at Rosebank. (See the bus timetable for details) Alternatively use the safe and world class Gautrain high speed train connection to get to Rosebank and be sure to exit the station using the NORTH exit. Ticket office is next to Hamleys!
Once on the bus you'll have a great time. (And before of course). Most Johannesburg residents are warm friendly people! Recommended stops include Constitution Hill, the viewing deck from the 50th floor of the Carlton Center and of course the Apartheid museum. It's a lot for 1 day - so be sure to catch an early departure. You can also include the SOWETO add on to get a great Johannesburg experience. Alternatively take a 2 Day ticket and visit a few more stops.
As long as you remain street smart you will have a fantastic visit and will be sure to leave Johannesburg with an enriching experience.
Hi Karen, the trip on the bus is quite safe, just be streetwise in South Africa - everywhere! Don't be flashy with possessions & don't carry loads of cash. Johannesburg is actually an amazing city - I've lived here all my life except for a couple years in London and travelling.
We did a tour on the bus. It was safe and fun, we didn't do the Soweto tour with them but it all looked really well organised if you were to do that too. The company offers a shuttle to and from hotels in Sandton in the morning/ afternoon. We used it going home after the tour - very handy! We took the Gautrain to get to the ticket office in the morning which was also no problem at all. I'd really suggest doing the bus tour, you get headphones and it's really informative on the history of the city. I really enjoyed the time we had in Johannesburg and at no point did I feel unsafe, just take common sense precautions and you'll be fine.
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