The South African city of Johannesburg, sometimes referred to colloquially as “Joburg,” “Jozi,” or “eGoli” in Zulu, is the most populous city in the country and the capital of the Gauteng province. The city harbors a complex history, not only for its tensions surrounding race and mineral wealth, but as an important archaeological site teeming with hominid fossils. Today, sprawling Johannesburg is an economic, educational, and cultural hub. Tourists visit the city for its museums and proximity to wildlife viewing parks. While running in Johannesburg can be somewhat challenging due to the city’s high traffic volume and lack of pedestrian walkways, there are some choice spots in city parks, nature reserves, affluent neighborhoods, and a few unique venues which welcome joggers.
Among best places to run in Johannesburg is the Emmarentia Dam and Botanical Gardens, which are connected to Delta Park and points north via the Braamfontein Spruit Trail. The Parkview neighborhood has nice running at Zoo Lake and the iconic Westcliff Stairs, while trail runners can go on for miles at the Kings Kloof Trail Centre, the Klipriviersberg Nature Reserve, and the PwC Bike Park. Runners can also access the Randpark Golf Club trails during non-golf hours, or explore the many paths and roads surrounding the Cradle of Humankind historic site.
Wherever you run in Johannesburg, know that getting around can be somewhat confusing, since some of our furthest routes are only accessible by car and the public transportation system leaves something to be desired. There is a Gautrain rapid rail connecting Sandton, Rosebank, Park Station, and the airport, as well as the Rea Vaya bus which links the city center to Soweto and the western suburbs. Most locals depend on an informal minibus taxi system (which comes complete with a set of secret hand signals). Tourists therefore may find Uber the best way to get around between runs.