Johannesburg is an extraordinary city, born just over 120 years ago
with the discovery of gold and since then it always has been a city of
commerce and opportunity.
Even today Joburg continues to attract
those looking for opportunity – it’s a city populated by people who have
come to realise their dreams.
The area of Johannesburg began on a vast undulating grassy plain, interspersed with ridges and kopjes
(small hills)in an area known as the Witwatersrand; named after the
white water springs that coursed the land. Beneath that rough but serene
country was gold.
Until George Harrison, an Australian
prospector, came pioneering, the mineral wealth of the Witwatersrand lay
undiscovered. In 1886, after George had sold his gold claim for just
£10, Johannesburg was born. He could not have envisaged the significant
world history that would unfold here in the province of Gauteng, place
Since then, the city has grown and become the largest and
most populous city in South Africa, and the largest city in the world
not built on or near a major water source. It is home to Africa’s
tallest building, a large CBD and many smaller urban centres. The road
infrastructure, telecommunicationss, health care, shopping, visitor
attractions, dining and nightlife are world class.
Joburg is lucky to have one of the world’s most pleasant climates, what is called a subtropical highland climate.
The city enjoys a dry, sunny climate, with the exception of short
late-afternoon downpours in the summer months of October to April, often
accompanied by magnificent electric storms.
are fairly mild due to the city's high altitude, with the average
maximum daytime temperature in January of 26 °C (79 °F), dropping to an
average winter maximum of 16 °C (61 °F) in June. Winter is, perhaps
surprisingly, the sunniest time of the year, with mild days but chilly
Magnificent trees have grown on what was grassland,
creating the world’s largest urban forest with more than six million
trees, and abundant birdlife.