Joburg is a city rich in history. A visit here isn’t complete without a walk in the footsteps of those who came before us. These iconic landmarks will take you back to experience the journey from Apartheid oppression to freedom, from our darkest days to the birth of the Rainbow Nation.
It starts way, way back in time at the Origins Centre. This gem on the University of the Witwatersrand’s Braamfontein campus offers a window into where we come from, with a fascinating collection of ancient stone tools, artefacts, and striking rock art from around Gauteng. Why not try the DNA Ancestry Testing Experience, and let your genes tell the story of how you came to be?
No matter how short, your Joburg trip cannot be complete without a visit to the Apartheid Museum. This haunting museum brings the struggle to life through a multi-media experience. Vivid personal stories are evoked through film, text and audio installations to make this a must for anyone who wishes to truly understand our history.
Constitution Hill is a historical patchwork, delving into one of the darkest corners of any nation’s history: its prisons. Like a phoenix reborn, the hill is now home to the Constitutional Court and the Public Protector’s offices. Be sure to take the tour and walk in the footsteps of giants like Mahatma Gandhi and Nelson Mandela.
Hidden in the quiet suburb of Rivonia, Liliesleaf captures a pivotal moment in history. See for yourself the dramatic events that lead up to the pivotal Rivonia Treason Trials and the formation of the armed struggle against Apartheid.
Fondly remembered as Tata Madiba, Nelson Mandela was a South African icon in his own right. Don’t miss out on a trip to Mandela House on Vilakazi Street in Soweto to visit the place where he and his family once stayed. It was here that he returned after being released after 27 years of imprisonment on Robben Island.
Nearby is the Hector Pieterson Memorial, a tribute to the students of 1976 who died fighting for their right to a better education. What was intended as a peaceful march ended in violence, and Hector was the first of many young lives ended on that day. The photograph of him being carried away from the protest, and Hector himself, has become a symbol of the brutality of the Apartheid regime.
It is by remembering the past that we can all build a better future. Joburg is a thriving, vibrant, fabulous city because it is built on deep historical foundations. Make sure you visit at least one of these inspiring, thought-provoking attractions the next time you #explorejoburg!