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Johannesburg/Sandton

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Gauteng : Johannesburg : Sandton
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Sandton rising above the urban forest

Sandton [1] is an affluent suburb and business centre in Johannesburg.

It is home to the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (the largest in Africa and the twelfth largest in the world), a number of large financial institutions (including local head offices for some foreign banks) and the largest shopping centre in South Africa.

Get in[edit]

By car[edit]

From O.R. Tambo International Airport, after you exit the airport, follow R24 Johannesburg signs and the R24 to the Gillooly's Interchange, from here follow the N3 North towards Pretoria, take exit 124 (Sandton/M60 Marlboro Drive) turning left into Marlboro Drive, follow Marlboro Drive until the T-junction with Katherine Street, turn left into Katherine Street, and follow Katherine Street into Sandton.

From the M1, take exit 23 (Sandton/M40 Grayston Drive) or exit 26 (Sandton/M60 Marlboro Dr), and follow Marlboro Drive west until the T junction with Katherine Street (400 m), and turn left at Katherine Street into Sandton.

From the N1, take exit 100 (Sandton/M9 Rivonia Road) and follow Rivonia Road south towards Sandton or exit 95 (Sandton/R511 Williiam Nicol Drive) and follow south until it intersects with Sandton Drive, where you turn left.

Rush hour traffic during the week can make getting into and out of Sandton a painfully slow business; you will be wise to avoid 7AM-9AM and 4PM-7PM.

Note that there is extensive Gautrain related construction happening in the Sandton area, specifically around the intersection of West and Rivonia Roads where then new train station is being build. Road diversions are in effect from time to time. The official Gautrain website [2] contains up-to-date road closure and blasting information.

Car rental[edit]

Renting a car is your best option if you are a confident driver as the city's public transport is very, very limited. It is worth buying a good road map of Johannesburg, using a GPS (available when you rent a car) and planning your trips carefully before setting out. The city is large and somewhat poorly signposted. Make sure to be exceptionally clear with your rental agency what types of things are covered by their insurance plans. The phrase ``Full coverage doesn't necessarily mean full coverage.

Like any big city, there are some areas of Johannesburg that you don't want to stray into if you look like a tourist or dont have enough fuel to get out of. Ask advice. If in doubt, stop at a police station and ask them for directions.

From the airport: Stay on the freeway between the airport and Sandton, and don't divert through the townships and Alexandra on London Road. A GPS following the fastest route will usually divert around the townships, but it pays to know where you are going. (If you are coming from the airport and you are afraid of getting this wrong, carry on past Marlboro Drive with the N3 (which becomes the N1) until you reach Rivonia road. Then turn left/south and this will take you straight into Sandton, bypassing any townships.)

Get around[edit]

By metered taxi[edit]

Taxis can be found at entrance 12 to Sandton City. Metered cabs can also be hired by calling Safecab on +27 (0)861 66-55-66 or Sandton Taxi Cabs on +2711 039 4402/+2778 396 4115. It is illegal for metered taxis to be hailed as is seen in many other cities (e.g. in New York City). Passengers may catch taxis only if booked (in person or by telephone), the only exception being in demarcated metered taxi zones.

Bus[edit]

Several main Metrobus routes serve the Sandton area, running regularly during the day in 30 minto 60 min intervals, as well as in the early evening. The 5C also runs regularly on weekends, including the normal early evening service. The 5C runs along Oxford Road and connects many important tourist attractions, including Sandton City, The Zone@Rosebank, and The Mall of Rosebank. Contact Metrobus on +27 (0)11 375-5555 (Ext. 6) for more information on routes and timetables Metrobus is by far one of the safest and cheapest methods of getting around Sandton, and the City of Johannesburg. It must be noted, however, that Metrobus is not an alternative to private (hired) transport.

See[edit][add listing]

  • Nelson Mandela Statue, Nelson Mandela Square, Sandton City. The 6 m bronze statue of Nelson Mandela is a favorite photo spot for tourists.  edit
  • Gallery on the Square, Nelson Mandela Square, +27 (0)11 784-2847 (, fax: +27 (0)11 784-2849), [7]. Mon to Sat 9AM to 6PM. Exhibitions of South African and international art  edit
  • Forex World Bureau de Change (Bureau de Change), Shop L20 by Michelangelo Towers, Sandton City, +27(0)11 326-8899, [8]. 24 hours. Best Rates, 24 hour forex service  edit


Do[edit][add listing]

  • Theatre on the Square, Nelson Mandela Square, +27 (0)11 883-8606 (+27 (0)83 377-4969, , fax: +27 (0)11 883-9673), [9]. Shows Sat 6PM and 9PM, Tue to Fri 8:15PM. Usually R100 per person.  edit

Buy[edit][add listing]

  • Sandton City, 5th St, +27 (0)11 217-6000 (, fax: +27 (0)11 883-0978), [10]. Open 9AM to 6PM Mon to Sat and 10AM to 4PM Sun. An extremely vibrant and popular shopping mall that dominated the Sandton area. It is affordable, but be prepared to pay a bit for the good quality that you buy. There are many unique shops here as well as typical South African franchises and even some British stores. You could easily spend an entire day here,  edit
  • Village Walk Shopping Centre, Cnr Maude and Rivonia Rd, +27 (0)11 783-4620 (, fax: +27 (0)11 783-2003), [11]. Mon to Fri 9AM to 6PM, Sat 9AM to 4PM and Sun 9AM to 1PM. Smaller and quieter than Sandton City  edit

Eat[edit][add listing]

  • Forex World Bureau de Change (Bureau de Change), Shop L20, Sandton City (Go towards Michael Angelo Towers close to Nelson Mandela square), +2711 326 8899, [12]. 24. Best Rates, Safe and Secure, Quick and Easy, No hidden Costs, Open 24 hours  edit

Sandton City Mall[edit]

Nelson Mandela Square at night

Nelson Mandela Square at Sandton City [13] offers a number of restaurants to choose from, as well as a food court with fast food outlets.

  • Baglios, Nelson Mandela Square, [14]. Eat delicious hand-made ice cream at the "Bagelos" store.  edit
  • The Bull Run, 20 Maude Street, Sandton (Just between Sandton City Mall and Village Walk Shopping Centre), + 27 (0)11 884-1400, [15].  edit
  • The Butcher Shop & Grill, Nelson Mandela Square, +27 (0)11 784-8676, [16].  edit
  • Lekgotla, Nelson Mandela Square, +27 (0)11 884-9555, [17].  edit
  • Montego Bay Seafood & Sushi Bar, Nelson Mandela Square, +27 (0)11 883-6407 (fax: +27 (0)11 883-3965), [18].  edit
  • Pappas on the Square, Nelson Mandela Square, +27 (0)11 884-9991, [19].  edit
  • Saxon Hotel has one of the best restaurants in Johannesburg. It is the hotel where Nelson Mandela stayed shortly after being released from prison and where he wrote his book ´Long Walk to Freedom´. This is where you will have one of the best gourmet meals in the city, but you need to have deep pockets.
  • Trumps International Grillhouse, Nelson Mandela Square, +27 (0)11 784-2366, [20].  edit
  • Wangthai, Nelson Mandela Square, +27 (0)11 784-8484 (fax: +27 (0)11 783-2368), [21].  edit

Sandton Area[edit]

The Greater Sandton areas has many modern excellent restaurants.

  • Col’Cacchio, Benmore Gardens Shopping Centre, Cnr Benmore Road & Grayston Drive, +27 (0)11 783 7650, [22]. Excellent stylish pizzeria chain found across South Africa. Offers a large variety of pizza and pasta  edit
  • Riverside Café & Bistro, Village Walk Shopping Centre, Maude Street Entrance, +27 (0)11 7843390/1, [23]. Offers excellent pasta  edit
  • The Raj, Rivonia Junction, Cnr Rivonia Road and Mutual Ave, +27 11 807 0471, [24]. Delicious rich Indian food  edit
  • Ocean Basket, Melrose Square Melrose Arch Corlett Dr Melrose & Sandton City Mall, [25]. Really good fish restaurant chain found across South Africa, good prices and quality food  edit
  • M&A, Edward Nathan Building, Cnr West & Maude Street, +27 (0)11 783 4134. Good selection of Italian food  edit

Drink[edit][add listing]

  • The Blues Room, Village Walk Centre, Sandton, +27 (0)11 784-5527, [26]. Have a couple of drinks while listening to some of the best live jazz.  edit
  • Taboo, 24 Central, Cnr Fredman Dr and Gwen Lane, +27 (0)11 783-2200 (, fax: +27 (0)11 783-2217), [27].  edit
  • Vida e Cafe, Found scattered all across Sandton area, [28]. Great coffee and vibrant service  edit

Sleep[edit][add listing]

Sandton skyline from the Village Walk Center looking over the Balalaika Hotel towards Sandton City and the Michelangelo hotel
This guide uses the following price ranges for a standard double room:
Budget Under R500
Mid-range R500 to R1500
Splurge Over R1500

Budget[edit]

For cheap accommodation, you need to go to look in the other areas.

Mid range[edit]

  • City Lodge, Cnr Katherine Street and Grayston Drive, +27 (0)11 444-5300 (, fax: +27 (0)11 444-5315), [29]. From around R800 for a double.  edit
  • Glenalmond Hotel, 130 Daisy Street (Located near the city's financial institutions and commercial establishments, Glenalmond Hotel in Sandton, South Africa stands along Daisy Street. Accessible from the Tambo Airport, you can get to the hotel by following the R24 motorway towards Johannesburg. Take the N1 Split towards Pretoria. Proceed straight on to Marlboro Road and take a left on Katherine Street until Grayston Drive.), 011 783 7127 (), [30]. Rates start at 899.00 ZAR.  edit
  • Balalaika Hotel, Maude Street, +27 (0)11 322-5000 (, fax: +27 (0)11 322-5021), [31]. From R500pps.  edit
  • Southern Sun Grayston, Cnr Rivonia Rd and Grayston Dr., +27 (0)11 783-5262 (, fax: +27 (0)11 783-5289), [32]. From around R600 for a double.  edit
  • Town Lodge, Cnr Grayston Dr and Webber Rd, +27 (0)11 784-8850 (, fax: +27 (0)11 784-8888), [33]. From R776 per room.  edit

Splurge[edit]

  • Blue Chip Accommodation, [34]. Provides various self catering apartments around the Sandton/Johannesburg area which enables the traveler to feel more at home. The apartments have fully equipped kitchens as well as a lounge with a television/prepaid telephone, bathroom/s, bedroom/s and either private balconies or gardens. All located in secure complexes with 24 hr guard and swimming pool.  edit
  • The Colony, 130 Daisy Str, +27 (0)11 784-1930 (, fax: +27 (0)11 784-1939), [35]. From R 1095 per room per night.  edit
  • The Courtyard, 130 Rivonia Rd, +27 (0)11 884-5500 (, fax: +27 (0)11 884-5501), [36]. From around R900 for a double.  edit
  • The Don Sandton I, 3 Rivonia Rd, +27 (0)11 268-6600 (, fax: +27 (0)11 268-6606), [37]. From R1000 per single and R1500 per double.  edit
  • The Don Sandton IV, 115 Pretoria Ave, +27 (0)11 883-5814 (, fax: +27 (0)11 883-0724), [38]. From R1100 per person.  edit
  • Execulet, +27 (0)11 326-4532 (), [39]. Fully furnished apartments for short-term and long-term rental. A full range of more than 100 privately managed apartments ranging from budget studios to luxury executive suits.  edit
  • Garden Court Sandton, Cnr Katherine Str and Rivonia Rd, +27 (0)11 884-5660 (, fax: +27 (0)11 783-2004), [40].  edit
  • Garden Court Sandton City, Cnr West and Maude Str, +27 (0)11 269-7000 (, fax: +27 (0)11 269-7100), [41].  edit
  • Michelangelo, Sandton City, +27 (0)11 282-7000 (), [42].  edit
  • Park Plaza, 84 Katherine Str, +27 (0)11 555-4000 (, fax: +27 (0)11 555-4007).  edit
  • Sandton Hilton, 138 Rivonia Rd, +27 (0)11 322-1888 (fax: +27 (0)11 322-1818), [43]. checkin: 2PM; checkout: 11AM.  edit
  • Sandton Sun, Cnr Fifth and Alice Str, +27 (0)11 780-5000 (, fax: +27 (0)11 780-5002), [44].  edit

Contact[edit]

Cheap Wi-Fi is available in many locations throughout Sandton:

  • Sandton City
  • Nelson Mandela Square
  • Sandton Convention Centre

Many hotels are also have their own Wi-Fi hotspots.

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