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South Africa Travel: Johannesburg


Johannesburg is a rich cultural South African city that, given the right precautions taken by visitors, can offer a lot to visitors who look past the sensational tabloid stories to discover the hidden beauty in the city.

Mandela House

This museum/historical site located in Soweto was the home of famed humanitarian icon Nelson Mandela for about two decades in the mid-20th century. It celebrates South Africa’s first black president, and its display pieces give the cultural context that led to this momentous event.

Most strikingly, perhaps, the house still features real bullet holes and damage from Molotov cocktails, highlighting the violence that Mandela faced for his activism.

Constitution Hill

Another important political landmark, Constitution Hill featured a former prison for political dissidents as well as, in modern times, the Constitutional Court, the highest judicial office in the land. Nelson Mandela, among many other freedom fighters in South Africa, was held in the notorious prison during the struggle for civil rights in the fledgling nation.

Maboneng Precinct

Maboneng an ultra-trendy hotspot for art enthusiasts, hipsters, collectors, and casual tourists looking for interesting nightlife. Carlton Centre is arguably the best destination for arts and crafts where sellers offer pieces unique to Sub-Saharan Africa.

Tours are available, but the district is also a great place to simply wander around on a lazy afternoon and take in the sights.


This is another trendy area northwest of Johannesburg, perhaps not as opulent or heavily trafficked as Maboneng Precinct. Melville has been described as “Bohemian” because of its low-key character and the famous unpretentiousness of the locals. Tourists are often surprised at how hospitable and welcoming the residents of this quaint town are, and how relaxing the entire vibe is.

44 Stanley

For upscale shopping, slick architecture, and great eateries, this converted mixed-use industrial space is a great place to take the family. The Salvation Café seems to receive tons of raving reviews from satisfied visitors, so after some window shopping head there for dinner.

Travel Tips for Johannesburg

The city’s reputation for crime, although greatly exaggerated, still has some merit. There are many poor people in the enormous population of 10 million, and offenses such as theft and robbery still remain possibilities, no matter how remote.

The best ways to avoid any issues are mostly common sense, such as to always have a clear plan, to know where you’re going, and to stay aware of your environment.




How to Prevent Homesickness When Living Overseas

Living abroad has always been a very appealing idea for many people. It presents a perfect opportunity to become part of a different society and culture that goes well beyond just being a tourist in a strange city. People get to experience how people live and behave, eat the real local cuisine and, finally, expand their minds in ways they never thought to be possible.

However, as many ‘pros’ as there may be to moving overseas, there is one massive ‘con’, and that is having to deal with homesickness. If you are planning on living abroad at some point in the future but you are concerned about getting homesick, here is some advice that could be very valuable to you.

Enjoy the Beauty of Where You Are

Wherever you are in the Globe, there is always going to be a site of natural beauty as well as some form of cultural heritage. In some places, it may be harder to find, but rest assured that it is there. Get out and see the sights and you may end up being lucky enough to witness some of the most stunning natural scenery on the planet. This can take your mind off your homesickness, even if only for a short while, but it can also help you in the long term.

Plan a Vacation

If you are working all the time, then it can be difficult for you to adjust to your new surroundings. Where possible, try to take some time off to get to relax and have some fun in your new home. This can mean taking in the local sights or maybe travelling further afield to see the best of what your host country has to offer.

Do the Things You Did Back Home

Humans are creatures of habit. Think of the many things back home you used to do and try to replicate them in your new place. Finding ways to add these little “traditions” to your new routine will help smooth things over in the homesick department. The important thing is that you remember that you can often find happiness even in the littlest of things. To help with this, take some items with you that will help to make your new home to feel more like your old home.

Make Friends

Leaving behind friends is one of the most daunting aspects of moving to a new country. It is understandable that you will miss them, but this shouldn’t stop you from making new friends as well. You are likely to meet new people in your new job, while you can also try finding clubs and groups for people just like yourself. Within a couple of weeks or two, you could have made friends with a whole group of new people to share your experiences with.

Keep in Touch

It is easier than ever before to keep in touch with friends and family. You don’t have to wait for letters and cards to go through the mail system as in the past. Instead, you can communicate instantly through email and social media. It is also now very affordable to call people on the other side of the world, and you can even have a chat face to face if you have a webcam.