Johannesburg Journals

An Africa Neophyte's Impressions of Johannesburg

A May 2001 trip to Johannesburg by francelvr

The Westcliff Hotel Photo, Johannesburg, South Africa More Photos
Quote: On our way into the South African bush, we stopped in Jo'burg, both coming and going. It left us with some very vivid impressions.

An Africa Neophyte's Impressions of Johannesburg

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Overview

Gorgeous Jo'burg beadwork created by Zulu crafters Photo, Johannesburg, South Africa
Quote:
As soon as the plane door is flung open at the Johannesburg airport, you immediately know you're no longer in Kansas. A scent that says "Africa" practically colors the air, a distinctive mix of red dust, rich spices, and of a people struggling to overcome the legacy of South Africa's conflicted history. Though only in the city for a couple of days on the front and back of a trip to the South African bush, Jo'burg left us with vivid impressions. From afar, South Africa's business capital with its soaring skyscrapers looks rich and powerful but up close, it's obvious most of its 3.2 million residents are poor and lack opportunity. Women with babies in their laps beg on corners not far fr...Read More

The Westcliff Hotel

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Hotel

The Westcliff Hotel Photo, Johannesburg, South Africa
Quote:
What a perfect place to crash after the 15+ hour flight from the U.S. to Jo'burg! The Westcliff is truly a hotel where the comfort is equalled only by the service. And considering its quality, the approximately $200 price for a huge, immaculate double room was a bargain. Ten minutes away from Johannesburg's northern suburbs, this lush Mediterranean-style hotel sits on three acres of landscaped grounds overlooking the city. Its 115 individually furnished rooms and suites, featuring fully-appointed splendid en-suite bathrooms, are designed to accommodate every need. Standard features include satellite TV and VCR, two phone lines, data port, and digital safe, individually controlled air-c...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on February 3, 2007

The Westcliff Hotel
67 Jan Smuts Avenue
Johannesburg, South Africa 2193
+27 (11) 481-6000

Sandton City Shopping Centre

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Attraction | "Sandton City Shopping Centre, a World Away from Gritty Jo'burg"

Quote:
Sometimes called "Africa’s richest square mile", Sandton City is also among Africa’s largest shopping centers with over 300 stores. Much of Johannesburg's business tourism is centered on Sandton, which is home to a string of 5-star hotels. However, even if you’re not staying at the Sandton Sun, Intercontinental Johannesburg Sandton Towers, the Garden Court Sandton City or the Michaelangelo Hotel, Sandton City is still well worth a look as it is here where you will everything from fine African art to camera supplies for that upcoming jaunt into the bush.As we were staying at the Westcliff hotel up the road and were only stopping over briefly in Jo’burg before leaving for Sabi Sand Private...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on July 29, 2008

Sandton City Shopping Centre
Corner Sandton Drive And Rivonia Road Sandton
Johannesburg, South Africa 2146
+27 11 217 6000

Apartheid Revisited

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Story/Tip

Quote:
Though the bitter South African government policy of apartheid became history in 1994, if you visit Johannesburg its lingering effects can still be seen almost anywhere you go in the city. Ragged women holding babies in their laps beg on street corners, fences around middle-class homes bristle with signs warning of alarms and guard dogs, and closed-circuit surveillance cameras stare back at you everywhere. Though apartheid is no longer the law of the land, its legacy is the crime, poverty, and desperation many residents of Jo’burg (a nickname for the city) still face daily. In the early 1990s, the so-called "Group Areas Act" (1950), which had reserved the city center and suburbs for whi...Read More