Beneath the veneer of civilisation, vestiges of wild and untamed Africa remain. Adventure lies in wait for those who dare…
Bill Harrop's Balloon Safari – Sip champagne while hovering gently above the treetops of the beautiful Magalies River Valley, or drift majestically above the Magaliesberg mountains in the Cradle of Humankind World Heritage site.
Orlando Cooling Towers – Bungee Jump or Power Swing the Orlando Towers or simply visit the Viewing Platform to view the breath-taking panorama over Soweto.
Elephant Sanctuary – Experience the African elephant at close quarters in their safe haven in the Magaliesberg.
De Wildt Cheetah Centre – Initially established as a Cheetah breeding project, conservation projects now include a successful African Wild Dog breeding program.
Lion & Rhino Park – See animals at close range on this privately owned game reserve, covering 1 600 ha on the typical Highveld terrain of the Cradle of Humankind.
‘Gauteng can assure birders some species that they may miss on regular birding trips to South Africa’s acclaimed destinations.’ Etienne Marais, co-author of The Chamberlain Guide to Birding Gauteng. (www.gautengbirding.co.za)
Few visitors realise that Gauteng is one of South Africa’s premier birding areas, boasting approximately 400 species including 60 endemics.
Despite its status as South Africa’s smallest province, Gauteng enjoys an impressive diversity of birds thanks to its position on the cusp of the Highveld Grassland and the Bushveld Savanna. In addition to these biomes, Gauteng is influenced in the west by the drier Kalahari Sandveld, and in the east by the sub-tropical Lowveld woodland creeping in along the rivers. Its capital, Johannesburg, has been famously transformed from Highveld grassland into the world’s largest man-made forest, with over 10 million trees. This accounts for previously out-of-range birds (not to mention some rare and exotic humans) flocking to make it their home. In addition to these varied habitats, there are many wetlands and ephemeral pans creating suitable terrain and hence even more diversity.
All this lies within 1.5 hours’ drive of 2 Mokolo, which in turn is situated just 4.5km from the heart of Sandton in Gauteng province, the acknowledged financial capital of South Africa.
While Johannesburg is the gateway to Southern Africa, it has more to offer than a cursory couple of hours in transit may reveal. Whether you are on business and have a few hours before your morning meetings to twitch a species, or are on your way to one of our region’s better-known birding destinations, a few days acclimatising at 2 Mokolo and getting to grips with our common species is worthwhile.
2 Mokolo is central Johannesburg’s first BirdLife SA accredited birder-friendly establishment, catering to the needs of birders, twitchers, or the common or garden bird-mad enthusiast spending time in Gauteng. Should you find yourself in the big city on business or in transit, don’t miss out on the must-see birds the province has to offer. Welcome to 2 Mokolo – your birding base for Gauteng.
We’re waiting to hear what’s on your wish list.
Johannesburg and its surrounding areas are rich in history, both natural and man-made. From the first origins of our kind to the evils of supposedly civilized society, you’ll find unexpected and fascinating cultural experiences awaiting you here.
Cradle of Humankind – The Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site is a 47 000 hectare destination with a rich and fascinating history told to us through the ancient fossils found here.
Maropeng – The Maropeng Interpretive Centre is a world-class exhibition, focusing on the development of humans and our ancestors over the past few million years.
Origins Centre – The Origins Centre is a world-renowned San rock art museum, and houses the largest collection of rock art in the world.
Sterkfontein Caves – The Sterkfontein Caves are world famous for their fossil finds; the most famous of these fossils being “Mrs Ples”, a 2.1-million-year-old Australopithecus skull, and “Little Foot”, an almost complete Australopithecus skeleton that is more than 3-million years old.
Apartheid Museum – The Apartheid Museum is the pre-eminent museum in the world dealing with 20th century South Africa, at the heart of which is the apartheid story: It illustrates the rise and fall of apartheid.
Constitution Hill – Constitution Hill is a city precinct, anchored by the South African Constitutional Court. The site is home to Johannesburg's notorious Old Fort Prison Complex with the Women's Gaol Museum, Number Four Museum, and Old Fort Museum.
Hector Pieterson Museum – The Hector Pieterson Memorial and Museum collects, preserves and interprets the memory, legacy and history of the student uprising in Soweto on the 16th of June 1976 and related events.
Liliesleaf Farm – Liliesleaf Farm is acknowledged to be the birthplace of MK, the military wing of the ANC. The farm was the nerve centre from which the ANC leadership planned the struggle for liberation and justice; to overthrow the apartheid regime.
Mandela House – The Mandela House strives to preserve the history, heritage and legacy of the Mandela Family.
Tswaing Crater – One of the best preserved meteorite craters in the world. Just east of the crater is the Soutpanspruit, feeding a rare and extensive wetland system
Voortrekker Monument – Monument commemorates the Pioneer history of Southern Africa and the history of the Afrikaner.
The possibilities are endless, from international to authentic African cuisine. Here we’ve shortlisted some tried and trusted options to be found within easy driving distance of 2 Mokolo.
The Butcher Shop – for meat lovers it's highly recommended
The Meat Co
The Green Peppercorn – highly recommended
Johannesburg is a shopper’s paradise. If that’s your thing, give your credit card a pounding in the shopping mecca of your choice:
Nelson Mandela Square
Hyde Park Corner
Michael Mount Organic Village Market
Market Theatre Flea Market
We have several world-class medical facilities in close proximity. And if the mudpack treatment you got while tramping the wetlands is not sufficient, pamper yourself in one of the nearby luxury spas.
Saxon Day Spa