Our Favourites: Nature Escapes

When Saturday Morning finally rolls around and you've spent all week cooped up in your office the last thing you want to do is spend a beautiful morning indoors. But we've all been there -- after 20 minutes of arguing over where to go and weighing up "how far is it" or "is it safe" you give up, get brunch at the mall and collapse in front of the tv with a food baby for the rest of the day. Here's a list that will hopefully help you avoid spending another Sunday morning in the mall;


1. Delta Park & Cafe

A cult favourite! Whether you're joining a park run, taking the dogs for a walk or just looking for a cute picnic spot- Delta park is a solid go-to. The park has plenty space to wander around with a beautiful nursery and shome small shops. When we visited we had breakfast at the no frills Delta Cafe- a family and pet friendly outside spot that's good for quick breakfasts or a well deserved post-cycle pizza.

Click here for more info on the park.

Click here for more info on the cafe.

Click here for the location.


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2. Monte Casino Bird Garden

The Bird Garden is tucked away in the corner of Monte Casino - right opposite the entrance of the main parkade. Yes, it's a good day out for families with kids but it's also a perfect place for a cute date or a fun group activity with friends. Make sure not to miss the free bird show! We always catch it at 11am and then head next door to Monte Casino or the Sunday Fourways Market for lunch.

Click here for more info on the park's opening hours.

Click here for the location.



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3. Joburg Zoo

Now, for obvious reasons, I have my reservations over zoos and animals being kept in captivity for our entertainment. But with that being said the Joburg Zoo has pretty well kept, open and spacious enclosures with friendly and helpful staff you really get the understanding that it's sole purpose is to educate and create awareness in the community. It might sound strange but this was one of the first places Alex and I visited together in Joburg less than a year after we met and we've been back numerous times since moving here. It's our go to if we're looking for a quiet few hours to stroll around in the middle of the city. And to make things better - we learn something new every time we visit. Did you know that the collective noun for a group of Owls is a parliament?

Click here for more info on the zoo.

Click here for the location.



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4.The Wilds (Municipal Nature Reserve)

This was recommended to us by a group of friends and we're so happy we tried it out! The location is great, a small sanctuary hidden right in plain sight, with multiple walking routes to explore or shady spots to chill out in. I don't think it's had a great reputation in the past, pretty run down and unsafe. But I believe there's been a big effort in recent years to revamp it, spruce it up and increase safety! We picnicked and played board games all afternoon, the park was buzzing with groups just like ours soaking up another beautiful Joburg Winter's day. Absolute bliss.

Click here for more info on the park.

Click here for the location.



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5. Zoo Lake followed by Cocktails at Moyo (Now Zulas)

This was an accidental find but also a favourite! Get your steps up or take the dogs for a wander around the lake and then make sure to treat yourself at Moyo Restaurant and Bar. We had an AMAZING lunch downstairs at a lably under the leaf green trees and then later headed upstairs and discovered these super comfy sofas on the roof deck and chilled out with pina coladas until sunset. Talk about improvising on a staycation!


Click here for more info on the park.

Click here for more info on Zulas

Click here for the location.


* I just found out it's recently changed to Zulas Food Emporium. I can't comment on this as we haven't been yet but let me know your thoughts if you've tried it!


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6. Walter Sisulu Botanical Gardens

I've left the best for last. WOW. I know this is a bit further out of the city but it should be on everybody's list. This one stop location honestly offers anything you could need for a happy weekend. Want to get your hiking boots on? Tackle one of their many walking routes. Keen for a spot to chill out for a few hours with friends? Pack a blanket and frisbee for a fun afternoon. Looking for a good bite to eat in a nice setting? Eagles Fare Restaurant in the heart of the gardens offers both. Whatever you end up doing while there make sure you take a wander down to the waterfall and snatch a couple of Insta worthy snaps. I promise it will help you forget you were ever in the city- even if only for the day.


Click here for more info on the gardens.

Click here for the location.

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Let me know if you have any other nature escapes you think I should be including in this list. Until then, enjoy exploring!

xXx


Here's my full Joburg Beginners Guide: