Ask any South African what the defining feature of the Jo'burger is and they'll tell you; we're busy.
As Jo'burgers, we've always got something to do, somewhere to be; and whatever it is - we need it now! But the secret about us (or maybe this is just me) is that - in between all of the bustle - we sometimes find ourselves with an extra half hour. It's that irritating bit of time which isn't long enough to do anything with; but is too long to do nothing with. My solution is: next time you have extra time with nowhere to go, take the scenic route, because even though we may forget it, Jo'burg is filled with exhilarating views, and lovely roads. To help you out I've compiled my top 10 scenic routes in and around Jozi suburbia.
1: The next time you're in Houghton, head along 3rd Avenue (it runs east/west parallel to Houghton Drive) it has gorgeous trees and stunning houses.
2: When you're stuck in traffic on the N1 North, just after the Oxford Road off ramp and just before the Houghton Drive off ramp, slow down a bit, take a look to your left, and soak up the exquisite view of the Westcliff hotel and the leafy suburbia.
3: if you find yourself frustrated and irritated on Louis Botha in Orange Grove, heading North East just before the Victory Theatre, take a right and a left and head along Hope Drive - you'll be surprised by the strange and impressive houses and trees.
4: The next time you're driving up Sylvia's Pass (heading South) in Linksfield, take a left into a little road called Kallenbach Drive. You'll feel like you're in a tiny, old, rural village, with narrow cobbled roads. On your right there are mysterious stone staircases which lead who-knows-where, but the real treat is when you head left, through the boom gate - the houses on this part of the road are better described as mansions and, almost at the end of the road, you can park for one of the most surreal bird's eye views in Jo'burg.
5: If you're heading from Greenside East-wards, adjust your route slightly to go down a road called Geers Avenue. It's not long, but the shade and deep green tunnel is sublime.
6: Instead of driving South down Oxford Road in Rosebank, take Saxonwold Drive, and take a moment to appreciate the splendid trees and the view of the Angel Statue at the Zoo up ahead.
7: When you're stuck in Rosebank with nowhere to go, drive down Rosebank Road (parallel to Jellicoe); it has majestic trees which make you feel like you're in a natural tunnel.
8: If you find yourself in Observatory, head West along St Georges from Cyrildene; when you get to the top of the hill you'll see a breathtaking skyline from an unusual perspective. This road is also great to whizz along, because; with the long gentle curves ahead of you, and the golf-course on your left; you'll start to understand why your Grandpa loves taking afternoon drives.
9: One of Jo'burg's more famous viewpoints is The Munroe Drive, it heads from Houghton Drive up the hill towards Louis Botha, and as you round the corners; you get a great view of the all of the Northern suburbs, right up to Sandton.
10: In Parkview, at the bottom of Westcliff Drive, is a road called the Westcliff Crescent, it's a stunning little detour with huge houses - great if you feel like fantasising about your future riches! As you drive along you'll see a little gate with a public notice on it (on the South side of the road), this is the start of the Westcliff stairs - which I've heard is an amazing walk, but I haven't yet braved myself!
And a Bonus: take a drive down Oxford Road in Rosebank after midnight to see a truly special sight (hint: if you flash them? they might just flash you back!)
While you're driving around Joburg, looking for beauty, why not stop and admire some public art around the streets of our city. Have a look at this review too: http://www.jhblive.com/reviews/travel/the_mosaic_city/30424.
Are there any scenic drives that we haven't mentioned? What is your favourite Joburg route? Let us know below:
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