Do you know what are the best areas to stay in Johannesburg? It is something that you must be clear before visiting this city. A good location is essential to enjoy this city, large in size, and avoid security problems.
The best areas and neighborhoods to stay in Johannesburg
Johannesburg is the largest city in South Africa. It has many attractions for those who visit them as a really interesting story, a diverse culture, a gastronomy to discover, and a lively nightlife to name a few.
However, it must also be taken into account that it is a very large city where it is not always easy to choose a good neighborhood to stay in Johannesburg. In addition, many of its neighborhoods have serious security problems.
Here you will find a list of what in our opinion are the best neighborhoods and areas to stay in Johhannesburg.
It is one of the most demanded sleeping areas in Johannesburg, as it is a key part of its history. Here you can visit the Constitution Hill, National Heritage of South Africa. A place that has witnessed the turbulent transition to democracy that the country experienced, from the Soweto uprising to the construction of the Constitutional Court.
Another interesting visit is the Newton Precinct, an old market that has been converted into a cultural space. Inside it is possible to see the Museum Africa, dedicated to the history and culture of the country, the Museum of Science and Technology and the famous Bus Factory art and design gallery.
Do not leave without going up to the 50th floor of the Carlton Center and get one of the best views of the city. It is the tallest building in the entire African continent, with a structure that exceeds 220 meters high. It is necessary to pay a ticket to access the viewpoint, but it has a fairly affordable price.
Hotels in Downtown
It is one of the main commercial areas of this city, being also one of the most exclusive. It is ideal to stay in Johannesburg and enjoy shopping tourism, with many craft markets and high-end shopping centers. One of the best known is the Rosebank Mall, where there is a wide range of entertainment, restaurants and shops with international and African products.
It also highlights The African Craft Market or African handicraft market, the place par excellence to find local products and the best travel souvenirs. It is located next to the Rosebank Mall and in it you can find the most curious and striking objects.
This neighborhood is as lively day as night, with an intense nightlife full of clubs and bars. Among the busiest places is the Design District, with places as well known as Latinova and Moloko. The Zone is another interesting alternative, a space that combines fashion, entertainment and gastronomy.
In addition, in Rosebank there is the Gautrain Rapid Rail train station that links the city with the international airport OR Tambo, Pretoria and Ekhuruleni. With this train service you can make comfortable transfers within the province of Gauteng. Without a doubt, a perfectly connected neighborhood with an interesting leisure offer.
Accommodations in Rosebank
It is a luxurious residential neighborhood located next to Rosebank. Here was one of the original farms that led to the formation of Johannesburg. It was called Melrose Estate and had more than 713 acres. It was located about 10 km north of what is now the central business district or CBD (Central Business District).
The tourist attraction par excellence of this area is the Melrose Arch shopping complex, a leisure center frequented by celebrities and professionals working in the area. It has become a gastronomic and shopping reference within Johannesburg. At night, it hosts one of the most vibrant environments of the city, with parties that last until the early hours of dawn.
In this neighborhood there is also one of the most iconic parks in this African city, James and Ethel Gray Park. Here you can visit the Melrose Wild bird sanctuary, a place full of bright colors and cheerful bird songs.
There are more than 120 different bird species that fly among the indigenous trees located around the lake. You can have a picnic and enjoy spectacular surroundings.
Located west of Johannesburg, this area is known for its modern coffee shops and lively nightlife. It presents an original combination of small shops and residential houses in which it is customary to confuse each other.
An example of this is the bohemian Seventh Street, full of second-hand bookstores and antique dealers. Many of its buildings date back to the 19th century and have been converted into cozy hostels where you can stay in Johannesburg.
Melville is also known for its university environment, because a few minutes away is the University of the Witwatersrand and the University of Johannesburg. Therefore, it is very common to see students in the many bars and restaurants in the area, which, unlike other neighborhoods in the city, are scattered throughout the streets and not inside shopping centers.
A must see within this district is the Melville Koppies Nature Reserve. It is located in the northern area and in it you can see a wide range of native vegetation of the region. Inside you can also see archaeological remains from settlements that date back to the Stone Age and the Iron Age.
Just over 50 years ago, Sandton was only a mixture of sandy roads and residential estates. After the fall of apartheid in the early 1990s, this municipality became part of the Johannesburg Metropolitan Area. It is now known as the Golden Mile of Africa, an ideal place to stay in Johannesburg.
Among its streets are the main financial firms, investment banks and even the South African stock exchange. A prominent building is the Sandton Convention Center, an important convention center that has been the venue of the victory in the 2004 democratic elections of the African National Congress and host of the World Summit for Sustainable Development held in 2002.
This neighborhood is where the famous Nelson Mandela square is located. It was named after the inauguration of a six-meter-tall bronze statue dedicated to the figure of this important South African president in March 2004. Previously it was known simply as Sandton Square.
One of its main tourist attractions is the Sandton City, considered one of the largest shopping centers in the African continent thanks to its more than 140,000 m2 dedicated to shopping. It is also among the largest in the southern hemisphere, surpassing the Southland Shopping Center in Melbourne and the Westfield Parramatta in Sydney. In its surroundings it is easy to find a wide range of hotels of the highest category.
During apartheid, Bryanston was part of Sandton, but after the end of this South African government he also became part of the Johannesburg Metropolitan Area. Like other neighborhoods in the city, this area is popular for its incredible offer of shopping centers, entertainment complexes and world-class restaurants.
Among them is the Bryanston Shopping Center, with more than 50 stores dedicated to fashion and beauty. A space that attracts the wealthy residents of the neighborhood who are going to enjoy your free time and savor the products of its top-notch restaurants and cafeteria. In this area it is easy to find hotels to stay in Johannesburg.
But the highlight of this neighborhood is, without a doubt, the Bryanston Country Club. This prestigious country club was founded in the late 1940s. It is located in a majestic green space of the city, full of a variety of native birds. Today it has more than 2000 members and is among the best golf clubs in all of South Africa.
Accommodations in Bryanston
As with other surrounding municipalities, Randburg became part of the Johannesburg Metropolitan Area at the beginning of the 1990s. It is an area of high purchasing power where the spaces and parks dedicated mainly to family entertainment stand out. Therefore, it is the perfect option to sleep in Johannesburg if traveling with children.
Among its main attractions are the shopping centers, some of the most prominent are Cresta Center, Sanlam Shopping Center and Brightwater Commons. The latter was formerly a port and warehouse area that was remodeled to become a modern commercial space with all kinds of services.
But the most famous in the neighborhood is the Lion Park, a magnificent park that has several lions of different ages. In addition, in this green space it is also possible to see several rhinos and other herbivorous animals. A simple way to take a picture with the true king of the African savannah.
If you are interested in crocodiles, you can always visit Croc City, a crocodile farm located in Fourways where you can observe this curious predator. In her they inhabit more than 800 copies, from small young to adults that surpass the four meters of length. The activity that arouses most interest is the feeding sessions that take place on Saturdays and Sundays at 2:00 p.m. (when the weather permits).
Hotels in Randburg
In Rivonia was the historic Liliesleaf farm. This is where 19 political leaders belonging to the African National Congress party were arrested in 1964, including Nelson Mandela. The prisoners were tried for acts of sabotage intended to incite a violent revolution. The Rivonia trial was a mechanism of the apartheid government to silence this party.
For all these reasons, Liliesleaf has become a heritage of South Africa, proof of the long road that the country had to travel to achieve a fair and free democracy. It is a living testimony of the resistance of a nation, with figures as representative as Desmond Tutu, Nobel Peace Prize. It is worth looking for accommodation in Johannesburg in this area to discover its exciting past.
In Rivonia there are also numerous shopping centers, such as Oriental City and Rivonia Boulevard, as well as restaurants of all kinds. If you want to enjoy music, comedy or theater shows, nothing like the Barnyard Theater that is between the streets of this neighborhood.
Accommodations in Rivonia
Maboneng has become the trendy neighborhood to stay in Johannesburg. It is an area located in the center and whose original name is not that. In fact, it is a name invented by the real estate company Cuisuity and that means “place of light”. Actually his name was Jeppestown.
In 2009, Escueuity began to take over industrial buildings in the neighborhood and renovate them to give them a new life. Thus began the opening of cafes, restaurants, shops and many services. A bubble in the heart of the city, which has begun to face the bad reputation of this area.
The Arts on Main cultural center is striking, a multi-purpose facility that a few years ago was a set of ruined buildings. It is currently an atrium of shops, cafes and galleries that every Sunday celebrates a popular food market where you can buy and eat African products.
It also highlights the MOAD or African Design Museum. This space is really interesting and, although it has no permanent collections, every four months it changes its exhibits to show the latest in African design applied to a wide variety of disciplines.
Accommodations in Maboneng
It is one of the favorite areas for many tourists when booking accommodation in Johannesburg, as it is close to the OR Tambo International Airport, the main national and international airport in South Africa. This will allow you to be perfectly connected to the rest of the country and well located when you return home.
It was founded in 1952 as Jan Smuts Airport and has since changed its name several times. It currently receives more than 16 million passengers every year and has restaurants and shops at the service of travelers.
This airport is the center of operations of the largest South African airline, the South African Aisways. Therefore, it is not surprising that there is a museum dedicated especially to this airline, the South African Airways Museum. It is a museum with memories of the airline that opened its doors in 1987.
Accommodations near airport