The best things in life are free: 10 ways to explore Johannesburg without spending any money

2019-10-17 21:51 - Thutolore Tsatsane
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Any time you make plans to go out, there is a lingering concern about costs.

Hard as it is to believe, you don't always have to dig into your pockets to have some fun. This is not a silly prank on you, we too take money talk very seriously.

There are a lot of things to do in and around Johannesburg for free and we have taken the time to source out 10 of the best activities for you and your family that won't cost you anything!

1. Lounge at Zoo Lake

Zoo Lake is Joburg's popular park and lake and it is easy to see why. The park features several dams, lush green lawns and big trees that offer all the shade you need for a picnic. For an even better afternoon take a boat ride across the lake and enjoy the views of children playing or simply feed the ducks.

Where: Parktown

2. Take a history lesson at Constitution Hill

The former prison complex tells a story of tragedy and hope. Some of the popular struggle veterans like Nelson Mandela and Albert Luthuli have spent countless nights at the facility. Although there are guided tours that come at a cost, the museum is free to the public on commemorative days:

  •  Human Rights Day: 21 March
  • Freedom Day: 27 April
  • Youth Day: 16 June
  • Women's Day: 9 August
  • Heritage Day: 24 September
  • World Tourism Day: 27 September
  • Day of Reconciliation: 16 December

Where: Braamfontein

READ: What to do in your city for R100 or less

3. Find peace at Nan Hua Buddhist Temple

The largest Buddhist temple in the Southern Hemisphere is right on your doorstep and you probably had no idea. Visit the temple and immerse yourself in the culture of the Taiwanese people that built the incredible structure. The suburb even has Chinese names while the rest of the complex is filled with statues.

Where: Bronkhorstspruit

4. Take a hike at Melville Koppies

Put on your hiking boots and trek along the nature reserve and heritage site. The hills have a history that dates back to three billion years and the flowers around the area are indigenous. It is a wholesome experience with a reward at the end- a spectacular view of the city.

Where: Melville Koppies Nature Reserve

READ: Unexpected city itineraries: Swimming in Joburg

5. Visit Museum Africa

What was once a fruit and vegetable market is a space to learn about South African culture and history. The large building plays host to small exhibitions from time to time, it also has various artefacts on display at a time. The Worker's Museum tells a story most South African's can relate to, the tale of African migrants who came to the city of Gold leaving their families behind to work in the mines so they can enhance their lives.

Where: Newtown

6. View contemporary art at Circa on Jellioce

Enjoy some of South Africa's best art at the continent's oldest contemporary gallery. It does not only exhibit the works of renowned artists some upcoming ones get a chance to showcase their collection. You might see the work of Africa's next big thing before they become popular.

Where: Jellicoe Avenue, Rosebank

READ: Small Town vs City Break: What a R1 000 a night will get you in each

7. Find out where you money comes from at the Money Museum

Do you know where your money comes from? Learn about the history of money at the museum based in the Absa bank headquarters. The exhibition showcases coins and notes from all over the world, some were recovered from sunken ships.

Where: Barclays Towers, Marshalltown

8. Stroll through Vilakazi street

Vilakazi street is one of the most iconic streets of our country, filled with many museums, it is a hotspot for tourists from all over the world. Take a drive to Soweto and visit the Nelson Mandela National Museum, just down the road from there is the Hector Peterson Memorial and Museum.

Where: Soweto

9. Learn about diamonds in the town of Cullinan 

The small mining town of Cullinan is filled with history all around, it is named after the mining magnate. The main street is a living museum, learn about some of the first banks, railway systems and hotels all at your leisure. The streets are also filled with cute restaurants you can try out.

Where: Cullinan

10. Watch the sun set at Northcliff Ridge Ecopark

Enjoy panoramic views of the city and a beautiful sunset. The path to the top has a paved walkway making it easy for anyone to hike up and take a glimpse of the beauty. As much as the highlight is the view from the top, there is a lot to see on the journey up, don't forget to embrace the environment.

Where: Northcliff Randburg

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