Johannesburg and Pretoria sit within the province of Guateng, South Africa’s smallest province. Predominantly a high altitude grassland area, Guateng also varies from rolling hillsides, to mountains, dry savanna and subtropical ecosystems. Home to the Johannesburg and also Pretoria Botanical Gardens, a host of nature reserves also also the largest man-made urban forest in the world (located in Johannesburg) and it is a vibrant mix of culture, history and the natural environment.
Johannesburg is often overlooked as just the entry or exit point en-route to the safaris of Southern and Eastern Africa or as a means to getting to the Indian Ocean islands of Mauritius, the Maldives and the Seychelles. As South Africa’s most populous city it’s well worth spending some time in the centre exploring the many museums and taking in the cultural highlights or relaxing in one of the many luxurious hotels found here. Stay in the suburbs, overlooking the hillsides and explore the Zoological Gardens, or stay in the centre and sample the varied and excellent cuisine to be found, whilst exploring the ever evolving and regenerating streets of the city.
Pretoria is located an hour away from Johannesburg and is a different kettle of fish entirely, with the scent of the purple jacarandas filling the air, its wide streets, leafy gardens and grand architecture mean that it is a real pleasure to explore on foot. Pretoria has a range of diverse cultural influences found throughout the city with ranging colonial architectural styles found throughout the city from the Palace of Justice to the State Theatre. Pretoria has a past heavily associated with the apartheid period, but is fighting back against prejudice and growing into a cosmopolitan city full of energy and hope.