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Benoni, meaning ‘son of my sorrow’ in Hebrew, is situated just 45kms from the vast city of Johannesburg. Benoni is far less urban than the ‘city of gold’, while still providing easy access to Johannesburg’s multitudinous attractions. Mostly however, it is a prime example of prosperous urban middle class South Africa.
The area encompasses over 30 parks with scenic nature trails and superb birdlife. The Korsman Bird Sanctuary is a vast nature reserve that is home to some mammals and approximately 250 species of birds, including the goliath heron, the glossy ibis, the African spoonbill and the black egret. The Bullfrog Pan is home and breeding ground to the endangered bullfrog, and the Bunny Park, with its numerous rabbits and farm animals, provides a fun outing for the whole family.
Rynfield Dam is another of Benoni’s highlights, and is popular with anglers and campers. Motor racing, drawing crowds of competitors and onlookers, is a frequent occurrence here. Benoni also offers two golf clubs, a tennis club and a sports club to keep active visitors satisfied. Alternatively Homestead dam is smaller and good for picnicking and windsurfing, conveniently located off the N4 east.
There is a small selection of restaurants to choose from, most of which are cosy, pub-style eateries. Shopping opportunities abound in the nearby areas, with East Rand Mall and Lakeside Mall just nearby, and flea markets at East Rand Mall and Bruma Lake.
Benoni is situated in close proximity to a plethora of tourist drawcards. There are two casinos nearby, Caesar’s Casino and the Carnival City Casino, and the city of Johannesburg is permeated with upmarket malls, fashionable boutiques and fine restaurants. In stark contrast to these glitzy attractions is the renowned township of Soweto, a focal point in South Africa’s apartheid history and the country’s transition to democracy.
Situated 45kms outside of Johannesburg, Benoni is easily accessible by car via the Atlas Road/Benoni exit off the N12 highway. Alternatively, trains and buses provide transport to the town, and Johannesburg International Airport is only 10kms away.