Western Surroundings, Johannesburg
In the most important gold mining area of the world is found the poor and densely populated city of Soweto plus game reserves and ranches.
Heia Safari Ranch
Between Krugersdorp and Randburg is Honeydew, set in beautiful hilly country. Near the little town is the Heia Safari Ranch, where visitors can spend the night in luxuriously equipped rondavels or, more modestly, in reproductions of Zulu huts. Every Sunday there is a typical braai, when great quantities of meat are grilled over an open fire and there are performances of Zulu tribal dances (the Mzumbe Dance Show). The Zulus live in a reproduction of a Zulu village, which was inaugurated by King Zwelethini in 1988. Visitors not spending the night can go on a stalking tour, on which, with luck, they may see buffaloes, zebras, giraffes, rhinos and antelopes.
Address: Box 1387, Honeydew, Gauteng 2040, South Africa
The Lion Park can be explored on 10km/6mi of roads. Visitors can observe numerous animals from their cars, including lions, zebras, ostriches, wildebeests and various species of antelopes and gazelles.Within the park are a restaurant, a swimming pool, picnic areas and barbecue sites.
Address: Box 2140, Four Ways, Gauteng 2055, South Africa
Soweto, South Africa
Carletonville, South Africa
Carletonville (pop. 140,000), between Johannesburg and Potchefstroom, lies in one of the most important gold-mining regions in the world. There are a number of townships within the city limits. Among the deepest of the mines is the Western Deep Levels Mine, which reaches down to a depth of 3581m/11,750ft (over 3.5km or 2.2mi). Carletonville is also an important agricultural center; the principal crop grown in the area is maize.
Abe Bailey Nature Reserve
The Abe Bailey Nature Reserve, 300ha/750ac, lies in a stretch of country typical of the highveld. It is noted for the numbers of waterfowl and birds of prey to be seen here. There are also zebras, springboks, black wildebeests and red hartebeests. There are guided one-day tours of the reserve.
Roodepoort, South Africa
Roodepoort, 10km/6mi west of Johannesburg, is an industrial town which has grown within a few years to a population of 170,000. Its leisure activities are centered on Florida Lake (bathing, water sports). On the shores of the lake is a bird sanctuary, with a 3km/2mi long hiking trail running through it.
The Roodepoort Museum illustrates the life of the first pioneers on the Witwatersrand, the early finds of gold and the different kinds of auriferous (containing gold) rock.
Address: Civic Centre, Christiaan de Wet Road, Florida Park, Gauteng 1709, South Africa
Witwatersrand National Botanic Garden
In the Witwatersrand National Botanic Garden, in which some remnants of the original vegetation of the region are preserved, there are 2,500 species of succulents from areas ranging between South Africa and the Middle East.
Address: Box 2194, Wilropark, Roodepoort, Gauteng 1731, South Africa