10 Best Non-Touristy Things To Do In Johannesburg, South Africa - Updated 2023

non touristy things to do in johannesburg
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An erstwhile gold mining settlement, Johannesburg is today South Africa’s largest city. This bustling city is steeped in history and was the home of stalwarts such as Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu. Nicknamed Jo’burg, this rapidly changing city also encompasses Soweto which was a separate city during the days of apartheid. Urban renewal is ongoing at a fast pace and the city is home to several of the tallest structures in Africa. Despite this, Johannesburg continues to be among one of the greenest cities in the world given the number of parks and cities it has. With one international airport and three domestic airports, the city offers good connectivity within South Africa and major cities across the world. Minibus taxis and metered taxis are popular ways of getting around the city while a commuter rail system connects the metropolis to Pretoria, Soweto, and other satellite towns. Here are some of the best non-touristy things to do in Johannesburg.

1. Exhilarating scuba diving adventure from Johannesburg

Join this thrilling five-day scuba diving adventure that sets off from Johannesburg. Head over to Sodwana, a World Heritage site and marine sanctuary. The pristine reef is the ideal place to spot a range of marine species big and small, including sharks and dolphins. Only certified divers can participate in this tour.

SCUBA Diving tour from Johannesburg

Duration: 5 days

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2. Make the perfect cup of coffee (from USD 93.0)

Turn into a barista with this fascinating course that introduces you to the art of making a cup of coffee just the right way. Spend the day learning about the precise way of boiling milk for a latte and how to pour an espresso. Learn the basics of brewing a cappuccino and other types of coffee, irrespective of whether you want to pursue a career in this field or simply want to master a new skill.

Professional Barista Course - Johannesburg

Duration: 1 day

3. Check out an interesting arts exhibition at Wits Art Museum

Posted by Wits Art Museum on Monday, 26 February 2018

Situated in Braamfontein, this museum is home to more than 12,500 artifacts that have been collected over eight decades. It is home to some fine examples of native African art such as beadwork, wood sculptures and other handicrafts as well as displays of traditional musical instruments and masks. The museum frequently conducts workshops and seminars for children and adults as well as hosting art exhibitions by famous and upcoming artists alike.

Wits Art Museum

Address: University Corner, Corner of Bertha and Jorissen Streets, Braamfontein 2050

Website: Wits Art Museum

Opening hours: Tue - Sat: 10am - 4pm (closed on Sun & Mon)

Price: Free

4. Catch a riveting performance at the Market Theater

This March 'ONE SPIRIT a dance festival that will featuring a seamless synergy of cultures, will perform on Thursday,...

Posted by The Market Theatre on Thursday, 7 March 2019

Founded in 1976, this iconic center for the performing arts continues to enthrall locals and visitors to Johannesburg alike. It is the ideal spot to see some of the country’s best performers in action and to pursue courses in dance, performance art, and photography. International artists are also regularly featured at the Market Theater.

The Market Theater

Address: 56 Margaret Mcingana Str Newtown Johannesburg 2001

Website: The Market Theater

Opening hours: Tue - Fri: 8am - 10pm; Sat: 11am - 10pm; Sun: 12pm - 5pm; Mon: 8am - 4pm

Price: Varies

5. Hop aboard a Red Bus for a city tour

Posted by City Sightseeing South Africa on Thursday, 28 February 2019

Hop on, hop off buses are a great way to get across some of the big cities across the world and Johannesburg is no exception. The red-colored buses are a common sight on the city roads and stop at most of the popular attractions. The open-top seats are a favorite with everyone, and it might not be possible to sit up all the time.

City Sightseeing South Africa

Address: Oxford Rd, Rosebank, Johannesburg, 2196, South Africa

Website: City Sightseeing South Africa

Opening hours: 8.30am - 5pm (daily)

Price: 15 USD

6. Sample the wares offered on food trucks at Locrate Market

Good morning family ☀️ Hope to see you on 5 May! #letsbuildbrands

Posted by The Locrate Market on Thursday, 18 April 2019

Termed a “lifestyle” market, this is a place where young entrepreneurs get to market and showcase their products and network to expand their businesses. Besides getting to sample delicious snacks at the food stalls and food trucks, you can also find plenty of fashion products, local artwork, and accessories to stock up on. Entertainment options include kids'’ activities and live band performances.

Locrate Market

Address: Lebo’s Soweto Backpackers, 10823A Pooe Street, Orlando West, Johannesburg 1804

Website: Locrate Market

Opening hours: 10am - 5pm (First Sunday of every month Feb-Nov)

Price: Free entry

7. Go slam dunk with Bounce

Hi BOUNCE Family! Please note that our Fourways venue will be closed until 16:00 today due to a private function. We...

Posted by BOUNCEinc on Friday, 30 November 2018

This sprawling indoor trampoline park is perfect for when you want an adrenaline rush without the extreme sports! Kids and adults alike will have tons of fun at this place where you simply can’t seem to stop. Indulge in wall running, free jumping, dodge ball, and slam dunking to your heart’s content at Bounce, where you can book a slot in advance so you do not end up disappointed when in the mood for some fun.


Address: Cnr Waterfall Drive & Country Drive, Midrand, Johannesburg, 1682

Website: Bounce

Opening hours: Sun: 9am - 6pm; Mon - Fri: 12pm - 7pm; Sat: 9am - 7pm; Mon - Fri: 9am - 7pm; (School and public holidays)

Price: 6 USD

8. Enjoy a fun game at Momentum World of Golf

Posted by World of Golf on Tuesday, 1 November 2016

This leisure park that has golf as its theme, sprawls over 18 hectares (44 acres) at the heart of the city. You can seek help from the professionals to fine-tune game here while advanced golfers can enjoy a few rounds with or without assistance. There is a café and a spa on the property to help you make a day of it with the family along.

Momentum World of Golf

Address: Corner Woodmead Drive and Maxwell Drive, Johannesburg, Gauteng, 2148

Website: Momentum World of Golf

Opening hours: 6am - 9pm (daily)

Price: 71 USD

9. Feed the ducks at Zoo Lake

Zoo Lake, Johannesburg 1
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Dyltong used under CC BY-SA 4.0

Located opposite Johannesburg, this is a popular public park and lake in the city. perfect for a leisurely picnic, you can also go for a boat ride on the lake when you are done feeding the birds. A restaurant serving authentic local cuisines and live events such as concerts make it a great place to hang out all day, for the entire family.

Zoo Lake

Address: Cnr Jan Smuts Avenue and Westwold Way, Parktown

Website: Zoo Lake

Opening hours: All day (daily)

Price: Free entry

10. Have a hearty laugh at Kitchener’s Comedy Night

COMEDY TUESDAYS is back, hosted by Lazola Gola, Mo Mothebe, Mojakisane Lehoko, Robby Collins + friends! Starts at 8pm...

Posted by Kitcheners on Monday, 12 November 2018

One of the oldest bars in Johannesburg and with a dance floor thrown in, there’s no better place to while away the night. Tuesdays are comedy night at this happening place and you are sure to laugh till your sides split at the excellent artists. The DJ stays around before and after the comedy show in case you want to hang out some more!


Address: Corner Juta and De Beer St, Braamfontein, Johannesburg 2001

Website: Kitchener's

Opening hours: Tuesdays: 8pm - 10pm

Price: 3 USD

Experience the non-touristy side of Johannesburg

Visiting a city is what most tourists end up doing. However, experiencing a city should be the true purpose of traveling. Pursuing non-touristy things to do in Johannesburg is one way of going about this. With our list above, you have lots of activities to keep you busy while in Johannesburg.

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.


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Chandana is a versatile writer with nearly two decades of experience in media, spanning clients across the globe. An avid traveler, she enjoys experiencing every new place to the fullest. Having...Read more

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