The development of the Gautrain network has radically improved Gauteng’s transport infrastructure. Launched in 2010 in time for the FIFA World Cup, this world-class rail system has brought commuters and visitors a clean, safe and convenient travel option. With speeds up to 160km/h, the train has drastically cut travel time between OR International Airport and business hubs, as well as between Johannesburg suburbs, as well as the journey to and from Pretoria. The current route has some of the most interesting stops in the province. If you’re going to explore Gauteng, this is the way.
Start your journey at the route’s southernmost point: Park Station in the Johannesburg central business district. From this Gautrain station, you can travel to any of the destinations on the route, all the way to Pretoria. Park Station also functions as a hub for multiple other transport systems, so it is easy to access, whether you are travelling by bus, taxi or commuter train.. From here, you can also explore nearby attractions such as The Orbit jazz club and bistro, the Joburg Theatre Complex and Constitution Hill. You can also catch City Sightseeing’s red bus from here, making exploring the city even easier.
Local is lekker
From Park Station, the journey to the Rosebank station takes just eight minutes. Before you know it, you’ll be immersed in the buzzy environment of The Zone @ Rosebank and the upmarket Rosebank Mall. Local restaurants and coffee shops such as Father Coffee, the Motherland Coffee Company, The Patisserie, RocoMamas, Tashas Rosebank, Anat and many more pepper the pedestrian sidewalks. Some offer free Wi-Fi, enticing you to settle down with your laptop while enjoying a yummy lunch or snack.
This area boasts some fabulous local clothing stores. Look out for Sowearto’s huge Black Cat peanut butter replica – the store is renowned for cool afro-chic designs, clothes, bags, accessories and more. With the motto “We are South African”, The Space is another great local clothing store based here. Also visit Nic Harry, selling colourful men’s socks and accessories. Don’t be surprised to find the guys in the store walking around without shoes, showing off their “daring” socks! Before you leave, have “an African experience” at the Rosebank Art & Craft Market next to the Rosebank Mall entrance and pop in to Paul’s Homemade Ice Cream for a treat.
In just four minutes, you can leave Rosebank behind and be at the next stop on your journey, Sandton, known as Africa’s richest square mile. Around the corner from the Gautrain station is the massive Sandton City shopping mall with hundreds of stores and places to eat. The Sandton business hub is host to everything from the Theatre on the Square, top hotels such as The Michelangelo hotel, the Radisson Blu Hotel Sandton and the Protea Hotel by Marriott Johannesburg Balalaika Sandton. Pappas on the Square offering Greek and Mediterranean fare, The Royal India are among the many restaurants in the area, just a hop and a skip from the Sandton Convention Centre. Don’t forget to have your picture taken with the supersized statue of Nelson Mandela gracing his namesake square.
Shopping and lifestyle
Just 10 minutes on the Gautrain from the Sandton station is the Midrand station, from where you can take a Gautrain bus to the new Mall of Africa. On the way, look out for the magnificent Nizamiye Masjid, also known as the Nizamiye Mosque. Still under construction in some parts, the mall houses more than 300 shops offering everything from clothing (think Adidas, Cotton On, LEGiT and many more), to appliances, local and international beauty brands and restaurants. Speaking of the latter, picking somewhere to eat from the vast selection on offer can be quite a task. Fishaways, RocoMamas, Starbucks and Krispy Kreme are just a few of your options.
There are plans underway to add even more routes and stops to the Gautrain in the coming years. Watch this space in future for an updated snapshot of your journey!
Gautrain, tel +27 (0)800 428 87246, www.gautrain.co.za
The Orbit, 81 De Korte St, Braamfontein, Johannesburg, tel. +27(0)11 339 6645, http://www.theorbit.co.za/
Joburg Theatre Complex, c/o Loveday St and Hoofd St, Johannesburg, tel +27 (0)11 877 6800, http://www.joburgtheatre.com/
City Sightseeing, Oxford Road, Rosebank, Johannesburg, tel. +27 (0)86 1733 287,
Constitution Hill, c/o Joubert Street and Kotze Street, Braamfontein, Johannesburg, tel. +27 (0)11 381 3100, www.constitutionhill.org.za
The Zone @ Rosebank, 117 Oxford Rd, Rosebank, tel. +27 (0)11 537 3800,
Rosebank Mall, 50 Bath Ave, Rosebank, Johannesburg, tel. +27 (0)11 788 5530, http://www.rosebankmall.co.za/
Father Coffee, The Zone, 177 Oxford street, Rosebank, tel. +27 (0)82 513 4258 or +27 (0)82 513 4258, www.fathercoffee.co.za
Motherland Coffee Company, The Zone, Oxford Rd, Rosebank, tel. +27 (0)11 447 8125,
The Patisserie 26 Cradock Ave, Rosebank, Johannesburg, 2196, tel. +27 (0)11 268 1304, www.thepatisserie.co.za
RocoMamas Rosebank, Standard Bank Building, 21 Cradock Ave, Rosebank, tel. +27 (0)10 007 2653, https://www.rocomamas.com/
Tashas Rosebank, Shop G28, The Zone, Oxford Road, Rosebank, tel. +27 (0)11 447 7972,
Anat Rosebank, Shop 48, The Zone, Oxford Road, Rosebank, tel. +27 (0)11 880 0955, https://www.anat.co.za/
Sowearto, 177 Oxford Rd, Rosebank, Rosebank, tel. +27 (0)11 447 7004,
The Space, The Zone, Cradock Ave, Rosebank, tel. +27 (0)11 327 3640, http://www.thespace.co.za/
Nic Harry, 20 Cradock Ave, Rosebank, tel. +27 (0)21 447 3080, https://www.nicharry.com/
Rosebank Art & Craft Market, Rosebank Mall, Cradock Ave, Rosebank, tel. +27 (0)11 568 0850, www.artandcraftmarket.co.za
Paul’s Homemade Ice Cream, The Zone, 117 Oxford Road, Rosebank, tel. +27 (0)72 048 1481, http://paulshomemade.com/
Sandton City, 163 5th St, Sandhurst, Sandton, tel. +27 (0)11 217 6000, www.sandtoncity.com
Auto & General Theatre on the Square, Nelson Mandela Square, c/o Sandton Drive and Rivonia Road, Sandton, tel. +27 (0)82 553 5901, www.theatreonthesquare.co.za
The Michelangelo hotel, 135 West St, Sandown, Sandton, tel. +27 (0)11 282 7000,
Nelson Mandela Square, Sandton central, Johannesburg, tel. +27 (0)11 217 6001, www.nelsonmandelasquare.co.za
Radisson Blu Hotel Sandton, Rivonia Rd and Daisy Street, Sandton, Johannesburg, tel. +27 (0)11 245 8000, www.radissonblu.com/hotel-joha...
Protea Hotel by Marriott Johannesburg Balalaika Sandton, Maude St, Sandown, Sandton, tel. +27 (0)11 322 5000
Pappas on the Square, 120B, Nelson Mandela Square, 5th St and Alice Street, Sandton, Johannesburg, tel. +27 (0)11 884 9991/2, http://www.pappasrestaurant.co...
The Royal India, The Forum, opposite Sandton Convention Centre, 2 Maude St, Sandton, Johannesburg, tel. +27 (0)11 784 4964, http://www.theroyalindia.co.za...
Sandton Convention Centre, 161 Maude St, Sandton, Johannesburg, tel. +27 (0)11 779 0000, www.saconvention.co.za
Mall of Africa, corner of Lone Creek Crescent and Magwa Crescent, Waterval 5-Ir, Midrand, tel. +27 (0)10 596 1470, www.mallofafrica.co.za
Adidas , Mall of Africa, Lone Creek Cres and Magwa Crescent, Waterval 5-Ir, Midrand tel. +27 (0)21 442 6200, https://mallofafrica.co.za/sto..
Cotton On, Mall of Africa, Waterval 5-Ir, Midrand, Tel. +27 (0)10 493 1716, https://mallofafrica.co.za/sto...
LEGiT, Mall of Africa, Waterval 5-Ir, Midrand, tel. +27 (0)87 820 0745, https://mallofafrica.co.za/sto...
Fishaways, Shop 1177, Mall of Africa, Waterval 5-Ir, Midrand, Tel. +27 (0)11 517 2436, https://mallofafrica.co.za/sto...
RocoMamas, 2058, Mall of Africa, Waterval 5-Ir, Midrand, tel. +27 (0)11 805 0807, https://mallofafrica.co.za/sto...
Starbucks 2077, Mall of Africa, Waterval 5-Ir, Johannesburg, tel. +27 (0)87 350 0215,