Rolling green hills grace the panoramas in Roodepoort, an affluent suburb in the west of Johannesburg. It’s evolving into one of South Africa’s premier addresses, positioned within easy reach of the financial district of Sandton, yet retaining a quiet rural feel. Farms and country estates can be found on the suburb’s western outskirts, while the rapidly developing eastern streets are filled with new-build apartments and housing complexes.
Roodepoort is a large suburb, incorporating a number of areas that were formerly part of the West Rand. It’s more of a city than a suburb. Areas like Florida were built in the 1950s and 1960s, with cute single-story detached houses on sleepy lanes. Northgate and Fairland mostly date to the last ten years, while Roodekrans still feels like an old-world farming community. Exotic flowers and cacti rise across Walter Sisulu National Botanical Garden, just one example of where tranquillity reigns. Roodepoort’s size makes it a challenge to travel around without private transport, but private taxis and rental cars are readily available. Shared minivan taxis run throughout daylight hours.Using them can seem daunting to a first-time visitor, but they’re very safe and friendly. Roodepoort is on the western edge of Johannesburg, while O.R. Tambo International Airport is far to the east. A much quicker option when flying in is to arrive at Lanseria International Airport, which is just a few kilometres north of Roodepoort.
Like much of Johannesburg, the suburb has its history in gold, which was discovered on farmland in 1884. It’s easy to escape the city here, discovering farm shops and rustic stretches of uncultivated land. There’s also a real vibrancy, found in the bustling shopping malls and affluent new developments.