The Best Honeymoon Ideas in South Africa The Best Honeymoon Ideas in South Africa

The Best Honeymoon Ideas in South Africa

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Why Go: From stellar wine regions with beautiful views to the chance to see wildlife like penguins and the “Big Five” up close, South Africa’s the perfect honeymoon spot, especially for animal lovers, foodies, and wine enthusiasts.

Best Ideas: In Cape Town, check out the trendy Silo District, taste your way through Bo-Kaap, and take in views from the top of Table Mountain. In Johannesburg, learn about the country’s history of apartheid, shop at the Sunday Market in Rosebank, and day trip to nearby Pilanesberg National Park — if you’re not also planning a side-trip to Kruger National Park — to see the “Big Five.”

Good to Know: Safety is taken very seriously in Cape Town and Johannesburg — you should expect to pay for Uber rides around town, especially after dark.

Like lions mating in the wild, the call of a South African honeymoon is strong. Fourteen-hour flights in business class have a way of making a trip feel far-flung and exciting, an adventure hard-earned by tying the knot and blocking three weeks off the calendar. Newlyweds will need three weeks to experience an inkling of South Africa’s pleasures and though most tourists skip Johannesburg, use the stop to break out from the airports and acclimate. Revitalized neighborhoods dense with shopping, dining, history, and art deserve your attention before you jet off to the dazzling Mother City. Because once you’re in Cape Town, you won’t want to leave. Stylish hotels, exciting restaurants, and jaw-dropping landscapes would gild any new marriage. Throw in thrill-seeking activities and a wine and gin culture, and you might consider calling in sick for the month. 

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Traveling & Getting Around in Cape Town

Over the past decade, Cape Town has transformed into a globally-minded, cosmopolitan city. Always a classic pinup beauty, Cape Town’s currency these days lies as much with the brains and ingenuity of its citizenry as its effortless good looks. The city’s well supported with the young and eager, lending a 24-hour hum to bars, restaurants, and a creative industry that earned a World Design Capital nod in 2014. Though chefs have elevated cutting-edge fine dining to San Pellegrino World’s 50 levels, country cooking and regional cuisine (impossible to find back home) abound. Other than a terroir-driven gin scene, historic wine country, and sexy beaches, why else go? Not to mention South Africa is a downright bargain, offering one of the lowest USD to rand (ZAR) exchange rates in years. You’re basically getting a fire sale on luxe hotels allowing you to upgrade your honeymoon without breaking the bank.

Located in the southern hemisphere, South Africa’s seasons are the opposite of those in North America.ThoughCape Town’s weather remains mild throughout the year, cooler rainy conditions during winter don’t allow for envy-inducing Instagram shots. Stick to the spring, starting in late October, when wildflowers pop up and visit through summer and fall right as the wine harvest picks up in March and April. If you’re inclined to combine your honeymoon with a public festival, you’ll most likely overlap with one by accident, especially if you like wine. There are literally dozens (check the calendar here). For Pinot Noir lovers, however, the Hemel-en-Aarde homage to the beloved grape runs in late-January.

United’s new nonstop flight to Cape Town from Newark is a game-changer, allowing travelers with limited time to skip the connection in Johannesburg. Otherwise, South African Airways runs the only direct flight to Johannesburg from New York City and Washington, DC (Dulles), providing connections to Cape Town. Delta also runs a nonstop flight from Atlanta to Johannesburg.

Some other things to consider in Cape Town: Locals don’t attend a gas-grill barbecue, they go to an open-flame cookout called a braii.Greet them with a handshake, not a kiss. Tipping expectations are lower than in the U.S. (think 10 to 15%). South Africans are friendly and genuinely want you to enjoy their country. If you have a problem or feel uncomfortable, most strangers will help you — just ask.

Honeymooning in Cape Town: Pros & Cons

Pros: 

  • Everyone speaks English and credit cards are widely accepted. 
  • Distances between most city attractions are eminently walkable, at least by day. 
  • If you prefer to avoid frequent hotel changes, leave your bags behind and use the city as a base for day trips. 
  • Nature is in its glory here. Go swimming at Fish Hoek or Muizenberg, snap pics of the penguins at Boulders Beach near Simon’s Town, abd bring binoculars to spy southern right whales smacking tails around Hermanus. 

Cons: 

  • Rides will cost you. Skip the notoriously sketchy local cabs and book an Uber everywhere. Fortunately, business owners are aware of the risks posed to tourists at night and are proactive in making sure you get to and from your destination safely. Always take an Uber after dark, even for short distances. 
  • The city has recently faced severe drought and instituted necessary water restrictions as a result. You’ll find signs in hotel rooms kindly advising you to reuse towels and sheets when possible (please do so). 

Cape Town Neighborhoods

Cape Town has many distinct neighborhoods, but your itinerary will be driven by where you choose to eat and drink. The key areas to know include the V&A Waterfront and Silo District, Central Business District (CBD) and De Waterkant, Bo-Kaap, and Camps Bay.

  • Victoria & Alfred Waterfront

    Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, Cape Town, South Africa
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    Called the V&A Waterfront, this developed zone along a working commercial harbor is one of the city’s biggest tourist attractions. It is fringed in shops, restaurants, food halls, and movie theaters, but save for the backdrop of the mountains, it feels touristic and sterile, like it could be anywhere in the world. Expect big crowds, though in fairness, the density of security hovered around high-end hotels makes it one area in which tourists can amble safely at night. If you’re heading to Robben Island, the site of Nelson Mandela’s bleak prison quarters, you’ll find the embarkation building at Quay 5 on Jetty 1. Next to the waterfront is the new “Silo District,” a small art and design hub that shelters one of the city’s most important art museums and a striking hotel atop which you have to sip cocktails. (Photo courtesy of the V&A Waterfront)

  • Central Business District (CBD) and De Waterkant

    De Waterkant, Cape Town, 8001, South Africa
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    Most big brands (like Westin and Marriott) and boutique hotels, plus several hostels, are clustered in these adjacent zones. Wander Long Street, a main drag of the CBD, and discover mixed retail and dining options spanning global heritages from African wax prints to Turkish towels, and Ethiopian restaurants to curry shops. Capetonians have gone crazy for third wave coffee, so expect plenty of espressos and cortados. You’ll find most nightclubs — underground trance! — bars, and restaurants in these areas or their hipster-ized siblings along Bree Street in De Waterkant. Stroll Bree Street to snack on artisanal cheese, ip local gin and tonics, and finish up the night with a tattoo of your partner’s face on your bicep. ‘Till death do you part, right? (Photo by justbe_in_ct)

  • Bo-Kaap

    Bo-Kaap, Schotsche Kloof, Cape Town, South Africa
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    From the edge of the inner city to the foot of Signal Hill, this Cape Malay community occupies colorful homes set to cobblestone streets and historic mosques. The area’s unique cuisine blends Middle Eastern, South East Asian, and Dutch influences with fruit and spices to create fragrant curries, samosas, and roti. Go on an empty stomach. (Photo by capetownpasseios)

  • Camps Bay

    Camps Bay, Cape Town, 8005, South Africa
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    You’ll find ritzy homes perched above the ocean in affluent Camps Bay. During the day, catch waves in a wetsuit; at night, sip a sundowner at a posh bar or fish restaurant. If your honeymoon overlaps with the New Year holiday, skip the area on New Year’s Day, when the townships organize buses to the beach, dropping off thousands of people from beyond the city limits for a ribald, boozy, crowded day. Reserve bunking down in Camps Bay for your second or third trip. For first-timers, it’s too far from the action downtown. (Photo by dcblr)

  • Best Attractions & Activities in Cape Town

  • Table Mountain

    Table Mountain, Table Mountain (Nature Reserve), Cape Town, South Africa
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    Table Mountain has a path for hiking, though it’s challenging. Save your breath and thighs and catch the cable car. Expect a long wait on fine days — on the first beautiful day of spring, for example, four hour waits aren’t unheard of. (Photo by table_mountain)

  • Hike Lion's Head

    Lion's Head, Signal Hill, Cape Town, 8001, South Africa
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    Hike Lion’s Head for an epic sunset but be wary of the dark descent. Locals know the footing, so follow closely behind. (Photo by lionsheadct)

  • Dive with Great White Sharks in Gansbaai

    Gansbaai, 7220, South Africa
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    The two-hour drive makes for a long day trip, but due to its popularity, visitors routinely squeeze it into their itinerary. Tours depart early and return in the late afternoon. (Photo courtesy of White Shark Divers)

  • Paraglide off Signal Hill

    Signal Hill, Cape Town, 8001, South Africa
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    Global paragliding enthusiasts descend on Cape Town to catch world-class gusts over stunning scenery. Take your pick from a dozen, though if you’re not a pro, you can still go tandem with one at Fly Cape Town Paragliding or Cape Town Tandem. (Photo courtesy of Fly Cape Town Paragliding)

  • Eat your way through Bo-Kaap

    Bo-Kaap, Schotsche Kloof, Cape Town, South Africa
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    Snack at street stalls or order a bobotie, the unofficial national dish of South Africa at Bo-Kaap Kombuis and Biesmiellah. (Photo by sneed9522)

  • Shop the Victoria and Alfred Waterfront

    Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, Cape Town, South Africa
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    Though bursting with fancy hotels and upscale restaurants, the area also features one of the best artisan markets, The Watershed. Housing 150 tenants, local craftspeople and designers sell everything from ceramics and photography to textiles, clothing, and jewelry — all under one roof. (Photo by sheismelen)

  • Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa

    V&A Waterfront, Silo District, S Arm Rd, Waterfront, Cape Town, 8001, South Africa
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    Even if you’re not a museum buff, the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa or Zeitz MOCAA, holds the largest museum of contemporary African art in the world. The setting alone, within a hollowed-out grain silo, is worth an hour’s gaze. Grab a coffee and shop for mementos next door. (Photo courtesy of Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa)

  • Visit Wine Country: Constantia

    Constantia, Cape Town, South Africa
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    Outside the city, wine country calls. Dating back to 1685, Cape Town’s closest and oldest wine region, today practically a suburb, is Constantia. (Photo of Eagles Nest Wines courtesy of The Constantia Wine Route)

  • Visit Wine Country: Stellenbosch

    Stellenbosch, South Africa
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    If you’ve got a few extra days, spend them in the historic town of Stellenbosch enjoying the Cape Dutch architecture of surrounding wine farms. What to drink? Chenin Blanc, Bordeaux blends, and Syrah rise to the top. (Photo courtesy of Stellenbosch Wine Routes)

  • Better Yet, Take a Wine Tour

    Hermanus, 7200, South Africa
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    If you’re a Pinot Noir and Chardonnay fan à la Burgundy, spend the day in Elgin, Bot River, or Hemel-en-Aarde. Book Gerda Bucker or one of her associates through Magical Mystery Tours to drive you out and back for the day. She’s savvy to all the wines and winemakers and will customize your trip so you can relax … and drink. (Photo by gerda.bucker)

  • Instagrammable Cape Town

    Silo Square, Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, Cape Town, 8801, South Africa
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    Of course, you’re going to want to document your fabulous journey. For Instagram, the shot list includes the pastel-colored Cape Dutch and Cape Georgian houses lining the streets of Bo-Kaap, Camps Bay at sunset, the view from Lion’s Head, a signature cocktail replete with rose petal from the rooftop bar at Silo Hotel, the beautiful blue waves of Hout Bay along Chapman’s Peak Drive, the top of Table Mountain, and kissing your beloved in the most picturesque places. (Photo by The Silo Hotel)

  • Best Hotels & Resorts in Cape Town

    Given how often Cape Town makes “Best City in the World” lists, it’s not surprising there’s a wide choice in lodging. Due to the great exchange rate your money will go far, though ultra-exclusive properties stay competitive with global rates, often listing prices in dollars instead of rand (ZAR) to prove it to you. Airbnb has opened up predominantly residential neighborhoods like Camps Bay. Fancy condos and beach houses come furnished with modern décor and striking views, though on a honeymoon it’s probably best to stick to properties that provide services and security. Worry erodes romance fast.

  • AC Hotel by Marriott Cape Town Waterfront

    Dockrail Road, Foreshore, Cape Town, 8001, South Africa
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    The AC Hotel by Marriott Cape Town Waterfront offers a good honeymoon-on-a-budget option, especially if you’re splurging on a safari or wine country resort. The new hotel strikes the right balance between affordability, modernity, and location with proximity to the V&A Waterfront. Though it’s a limited service property, a solid tapas restaurant, gym, and generous breakfast buffet deliver value. Rates start at $159 a night. (Photo courtesy of AC Hotel by Marriott Cape Town Waterfront)

  • Labotessa

    5 Church Square, 37 Parliament St, Cape Town City Centre, Cape Town, 8000, South Africa
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    For chic and boutique, book the brand new Labotessa on Church Square in the city center. Owner Johan du Plessisa painstakingly renovated a historic building, and well-appointed “signature suites” kick up the intimacy factor with private keyed elevator access. Rates start at $500 a night. (Photo courtesy of Labotessa)

  • The Silo

    Silo Square, Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, Cape Town, 8801, South Africa
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    If you don’t stay overnight, at least sip cocktails on the roof at The Silo, one of Cape Town’s newest, most striking hotels, located in the Silo District. It’s a see-and-be-seen spot with carefully curated art and furnishings that evoke sleeping in a celebrity stylist’s home. Rates hover around the $1,000 a night mark in the high season. (Photo courtesy of The Silo)

  • 15 On Orange Hotel, Autograph Collection

    Orange Street & Grey's Pass, Gardens, Cape Town, 8001, South Africa
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    Still glamorous, but for a fraction of the price, try 15 On Orange Hotel, Autograph Collection, where rates start around $160 per night. (Photo courtesy of 15 On Orange Hotel, Autograph Collection)

  • One & Only Cape Town

    Dock Rd, Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, Cape Town, 8001, South Africa
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    If your taste adheres closer to the traditional luxury of designer Adam Tihany, check out One & Only Cape Town along the V&A waterfront. Catering largely to well-heeled, older Americans, its greatest feature is an oasis-like pool at the heart of the property. (Photo courtesy of One & Only Cape Town)

  • Ellerman House

    180 Kloof Rd, Bantry Bay, Cape Town, 8005, South Africa
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    Ellerman House surpasses the One & Only in price, boasting a killer location overlooking the Atlantic. Set inside an Edwardian-era mansion close to Clifton Beach, you’re a short drive to the city center while feeling miles away from it. If you’re splurging, book a posh villa replete with private pool and staff. Rates range from $750 to $950 a night. (Photo courtesy of Ellerman House)

  • Honeymoon Packages in Cape Town

  • 12 Apostles Hotel & Spa

    Victoria Street, Camps Bay, Cape Town, 8005, South Africa
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    You’ve probably seen gorgeous photos of the five-star 12 Apostles Hotel & Spa. With mountains to its back and the shimmering sea at its feet, the hotel’s secluded, envy-worthy location fosters all manner of proposals. Honeymoon packages include the “Deluxe” which consists of typical romance-fueling delights like Champagne, rose petal turndown service, a helicopter flight, and a couples’ massage with oysters, strawberries, and sparkling wine. Note that the Deluxe package is $674 per couple and must be added to your room rate, which starts at $435 per night. (Photo courtesy of 12 Apostles Hotel & Spa)

  • Cape Grace

    W Quay Rd, Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, Cape Town, 8002, South Africa
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    At Cape Grace, couples can book the “Special Moments” package, which includes luxury airport transfers, chilled sparkling wine and homemade chocolates in your room, and either a romantic dinner in noted Signal Restaurant or a couple’s massage in the Spa at Cape Grace. Packages range from $950 to $1,300 per couple and require a three-night minimum stay. (Photo courtesy of Cape Grace Hotel)

  • Best Restaurants & Bars in Cape Town

  • Chef’s Warehouse & Canteen

    92 Bree St, Cape Town City Centre, Cape Town, 8000, South Africa
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    Capetonians love to eat. Translation: you could spend weeks working through the evolving, restless restaurant scene and Chef’s Warehouse & Canteen is a good place to start. A set menu of eclectic small plates featuring South African-fusion food by Liam Tomlin coupled with a great wine list keep in-the-know and industry folks returning. Other ideas include anything by Luke Dale Roberts, the city’s most celebrated and prolific chef. (Photo courtesy of Chef’s Warehouse & Canteen)

  • The Test Kitchen

    The Old Biscuit Mill, 375 Albert Rd, Woodstock, Cape Town, 7915, South Africa
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    The Test Kitchen regularly lands on international “Best of” lists. It’s a honeymoon-worthy splurge, though Shortmarket Club, The Pot Luck Club and Salsify at Roundhouse are excellent back-ups if reservations for the flagship prove elusive. Hint: book early. (Photo courtesy of The Test Kitchen)

  • FYN Restaurant

    5th Floor, Speakers Corner, 37 Parliament St, Cape Town City Centre, Cape Town, 8001, South Africa
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    FYN Restaurant’s sleek interior and striking views from the roof of the Speakers’ Corner building set the scene for Japanese fine dining, while leather, glass, and marble décor lend a sexy edge to your night. (Photo courtesy of FYN Restaurant)

  • Thali

    3 Park Rd, Gardens, Cape Town, 8001, South Africa
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    Vegetarians who don’t want to compromise on creativity and flavor or delicious South African wine should try North Indian-inspired Thali. (Photo courtesy of Thali)

  • Publik Wine Bar

    11D Kloof Nek Rd, Gardens, Cape Town, 8001, South Africa
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    Give your wallet and gut a break and go casual for a night or two. Try small bites partnered to avant-garde or natural local wines at Publik Wine Bar and The Commissary, another LDR spot. (Photo courtesy of Publik Wine Bar)

  • Cause Effect

    280 Dock Rd, Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, Cape Town, 8001, South Africa
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    After hours, grab experimental cocktails at Cause Effect or sip gin at The Gin Bar hidden behind a chocolate shop. (Photo courtesy of Cause Effect)

  • Bottom Line: Cape Town

    Cape Town will seduce you and you’ll want more. Yes, there’s grime and crime and centuries worth of tragic colonialist baggage, but the people have cut and polished and worked that rough diamond into a flawed but brilliant gem. Expect to plot your return before you leave, because there’s nowhere else on Earth like Cape Town.

  • JOHANNESBURG

    Best Honeymoon Ideas in Johannesburg

    Johannesburg, the capital of South Africa is a sprawling city rarely glimpsed by tourists as they use O.R. Tambo to jump between other points of interest. But the bustling capital — rife with creative restaurants and edgy art and music — deserves a few days of exploration.

  • Honeymooning in Johannesburg: Pros & Cons

    Pros: 

    • Jozi’s not especially touristy, so you’ll be mingling with locals at weekend art fairs and in the city’s booming restaurant scene. 
    • Less demand means better prices for the finest hotels, too. Add with a killer exchange rate, you’ve got access to five-star luxury at New York City’s two-star prices.

    Cons: 

    • Rides may add up, as you can expect to take Uber everywhere you go, especially at night. 
    • Traffic across the sprawling city makes zipping back and forth between neighborhoods time consuming. Just pick a spot or two rather than attempt to conquer the entire city in a day. 
    • Watch your belongings, don’t wear flashy jewelry, and be smart about your surroundings.
  • Johannesburg Neighborhoods

  • Braamfontein

    Braamfontein, Johannesburg, South Africa
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    Over the last decade, Braamfontein’s fortunes have seen an uptick. Located in the CBD, “Braam” boasts many of Joburg’s best restaurants and hip stores. (Photo by Paul Saad)

  • Maboneng Precinct

    276 Fox St, City and Suburban, Johannesburg, 2094, South Africa
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    Urban renewal is afoot downtown in the Maboneng Precinct, where abandoned warehouses house high-end apartments and art-fueled pop-up shops. (Photo by henkcoetzee)

  • 44 Stanley

    44 Stanley Ave, Braamfontein Werf, Johannesburg, 2092, South Africa
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    44 Stanley is both a precinct and a lifestyle concept. Occupying a series of revitalized industrial buildings from the 1930s, the areas offers shopping and cafes in storefronts rather than the oversized malls prevalent downtown. Wander the leafy arcades and shaded courtyards of this unique zone with an organic coffee from Bean There. (Photo courtesy of Bean There Coffee Company)

  • Melville

    Melville, Johannesburg, 2092, South Africa
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    Melville is oft-associated with bohemianism, though in the Instagram era of stylists celebrating Moroccan poufs and African mud cloths together, one’s notion of the term may vary. Proximity to the university informs the lively drinking scene on 7th street. (Photo by Marcelo Druck)

  • Bryanston

    Bryanston, Sandton, 2191, South Africa
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    Though part of the greater metropolitan area, Bryanston remains a wealthy enclave east of downtown more akin to a suburb than the city. As such, the area features several good restaurants with considered wine lists. (Photo by grawz)

  • Rosebank

    Rosebank, Johannesburg, 2196, South Africa
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    Rosebank has often attracted tourists with its density of restaurants and an Art & Craft Market popular with those shopping for souvenirs like beaded jewelry and wood-carved statues and masks. (Photo courtesy of Rosebank Art & Craft Market)

  • Soweto

    Soweto, South Africa
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    Of all the neighborhoods in Johannesburg, you’ve likely heard of Soweto, the infamous township. Today, a market, theater, and brewery attract curious visitors who typically enter via a cultural walking tour. (Photo by danilodinucci_irididigitali)

  • Best Attractions & Activities in Johannesburg

  • Apartheid Museum

    Northern Park Way and Gold Reef Rd, Ormonde, Johannesburg, 2001, South Africa
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    Brush-up on South Africa’s turbulent history at the Apartheid Museum. (Photo courtesy of the Apartheid Museum)

  • Wits Art Museum

    Wits Art Museum Cnr Jorissen and, Bertha St, Johannesburg, 2001, South Africa
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    Otherwise, exploring neighborhoods is the best way to get a feel for the vibe and culture of the city. For an afternoon of art, tour the African pieces inside the Wits Art Museum or catch contemporary works in the Stevenson Gallery on Juta Street in Braamfontein. (Photo courtesy of Wits Art Museum)

  • Hit the Sunday Markets in Maboneng and Rosebank

    276 Fox St, City and Suburban, Johannesburg, 2094, South Africa
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    In Maboneng, stroll the Sunday Market on Main to snag special designs and snack on local foods and brews. On Sundays, the Rosebank Market — dense with food, drink, and craft vendors — unfurls atop a parking lot. (Photo courtesy of Market on Main)

  • Pilanesberg National Park and Game Reserve

    Pilanesberg National Park, South Africa
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    Of course, most visitors who land in Jo’burg, eventually head for Kruger National Park, but if time is tight, you can still enjoy a safari experience at nearby Pilanesberg National Park and Game Reserve. Only three hours from downtown Johannesburg, the park occupies the crater of an ancient volcano and provides a scenic setting in which to point-and-shoot (with your camera) the Big Five. (Photo courtesy of Pilanesberg National Park and Game Reserve)

  • Best Hotels & Resorts in Johannesburg

    It’s unfortunate Johannesburg hotels must tout security as a property feature, yet safety remains top of mind for visitors. At these properties, you’ll be focused on fun, food, and romance instead of managing unease.

  • Four Seasons Hotel The Westcliff

    67 Jan Smuts Ave, Westcliff, Johannesburg, 2132, South Africa
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    Perched above the city on the rocky Witwatersrand, or the Rand, the Four Seasons Hotel The Westcliff evokes a fashionable hillside village. You could almost imagine you’ve alighted in Italy, with the property’s villas intermixed with gardens and fountains. For honeymooners, the hotel offers a “celebration package” that includes dinner at either View or Pre View restaurant, sparkling wine, and special treats. Eat a leisurely breakfast the next morning, buffered by a late checkout. Rates start at $340 a night. (Photo courtesy of Four Seasons Hotel The Westcliff)

  • African Pride Melrose Arch, Autograph Collection

    1 Melrose St, Melrose, Johannesburg, 2196, South Africa
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    Another five-star property, the African Pride Melrose Arch, Autograph Collection, sits inside a popular shopping district and gated community considered a “city-within-a-city.” Décor blends global inspiration with African prints, while its larger rooms feature raised tubs and terraces. Rates start at $270 a night. (Photo courtesy of African Pride Melrose Arch, Autograph Collection)

  • Saxon Hotel, Villas and Spa

    36 Saxon Rd, Sandhurst, Johannesburg, 2196, South Africa
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    Saxon Hotel Villa and Spa, an elegant property in the suburb of Sandhurst, offers a respite from the city’s frenetic energy. If you don’t have time for a safari in Kruger National Park, let Saxon organize a program to its sister property Shambala — a private game reserve in the Limpopo Province, it’s only a 2.5-hour drive or 55-minute helicopter ride away. Otherwise, just stay on-site and drink through the well-stocked wine cellar. Rates start at $532 per night. (Photo by Saxon Hotel Villa and Spa)

  • Hallmark House

    Maboneng Presinct, 54 Siemert Rd, New Doornfontein, Johannesburg, 2094, South Africa
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    Hallmark House tips into the trendy category as the first flashy hotel in the creative quarter of Maboneng. Owner and entrepreneur Jonathan Liebmann hired designer David Adjaye to transform the property, which was reclaimed from squatters. The surrounding neighborhood buzzes with street art and convivial bars, proving safer for walking around than other zones due to a private security detail. Rates vary by date but they’re sold out for most of 2020 so check their website before you book. (Photo courtesy of Hallmark House)

  • Best Restaurants & Bars in Johannesburg

    Johannesburg is the fastest growing market for wine sales in South Africa so you can expect a commensurate dining scene that’s ever-growing and innovative. However, businesses shutter regularly, sometimes rising anew with a different name and vision — sometimes not —  so always check hours and availability before trekking across town for an unannounced bite.

  • Marble Restaurant

    Trumpet on Keyes Corner 19 Keyes and, Jellicoe Ave, Rosebank, Johannesburg, 2196, South Africa
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    Marble Restaurant, owned by David Higgs, celebrates South Africans’ love of cooking with fire. Armed with a slew of awards, an incredible wine list, and fetching city views, Marble is a don’t miss — especially if you’re game for the 42-day-aged sirloin on the bone sourced from Migo’s Jersey Beef. (Photo courtesy of Marble Restaurant)

  • Fermier

    141 Lynnwood Rd, The Willows 340-Jr, Pretoria, South Africa
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    Head for the city’s best farmhouse dining at Fermier in Pretoria. The decadent nine-course menu aims for a sustainable footprint. Take Uber there and back. (Photo courtesy of Fermier)

  • Grei

    Saxon Hotel, Villas and Spa, 36 Saxon Rd, Sandhurst, Johannesburg, 2196, South Africa
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    A female culinary whizz helms the kitchen at grown-up Grei at the Saxon Hotel in Sandhurst, earning acclaim from local and visiting bon vivants alike. (Photo courtesy of grei_restaurant)

  • Gentlemen's Arthouse

    Miriam Makeba St, Newtown, Johannesburg, 2198, South Africa
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    Inside the beautiful digs of Gentlemen’s Arthouse, servers move through the space like Vaudeville actors. Between swish cocktails, good food and theatrics, plan for a few hours here. (Photo courtesy of Gentlemen’s Arthouse)

  • LBV Bistro

    277 Main Rd, Bryanston, Sandton, 2191, South Africa
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    In Bryanston, LBV Bistro takes wine as seriously as its modern South African fare. (Photo by LBV Bistro)

  • Six Cocktail Bar

    90 3rd Ave, Melville, Johannesburg, 2092, South Africa
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    If you’re done dining, grab some drinks on 7th Street in Melville. Listen to jazz over gin and tonics at Six Cocktail Bar, then pass the night away inside 1920s NYC-styled speakeasy Hell’s Kitchen. (Photo courtesy of Hell’s Kitchen)

  • Tiger's Milk

    Shop 1, Riverside Junction, 63 St James Cres, Bryanston, Sandton, 2191, South Africa
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    Fun tipsy nights can be had at Tiger’s Milk in Bryanston and trendy tapas joint Rockets Lolitas. (Photo courtesy of Tiger’s Milk)

  • Sin + Tax

    #8573311~!# District of Freedom, 4 Bolton Rd, Parkwood, Randburg, 2193, South Africa
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    To ensure a table, book a reservation for drinks at Sin + Tax in Rosebank, considered one of, if not the best, cocktail bars in town. (Photo courtesy of Sin + Tax)

  • Bottom Line: Johannesburg

    A former gold mining camp, Johannesburg has marched on for 130 years, evolving into a modern, pan-African city filled with hip creatives renting cheap warehouse space to make art, food, and cutting-edge design. Like old New York, Jozi offers intrepid honeymooners the chance to explore a dynamic urban landscape that serves as a foil to Cape Town’s breezy beach style.