The coast is a favourite getaway destination for inland city slickers, especially during summer and the festive season.
When December arrives, many Joburgers pack their bags and head for the beach, leaving behind a city buzzing with festive spirit.
However, there are plenty of reasons to be in Johannesburg these holidays.
Radisson RED Rosebank curator Michael Delaney has provided the following reasons to consider ‘The City of God’ for a memorable Christmas staycation.
Unique festive markets
Joburg has some of the best festive markets where you can experience the joy of Christmas shopping Joburg has to offer, Delaney explained.
“Bryanston Organic Market, Fourways Farmers Market, Rosebank Sunday Market and the Neighbourgoods Market are just a few of the top spots that transform into a winter wonderland with festive decorations, artisanal gifts, and mouthwatering food stalls.”
He added that you can shop for hand-made crafts, locally designed fashion, and one-of-a-kind gifts - all while enjoying live music and the festive atmosphere.
It's an ideal place to find special presents for your loved ones. You can also enjoy the holiday spirit while supporting local artisans and vendors – “a true win-win,” he said.
Spectacular light displays
The Radisson RED Rosebank curator highlighted that while Joburg may not have the ocean to set the backdrop, it more than makes up for it with its dazzling light displays.
“The city streets, malls and neighbourhoods come alive with enchanting illuminations, transforming the city into a Christmas wonderland.”
Delaney added that Melrose Arch and Sandton City are especially known for their extravagant displays.
“The dazzling Christmas trees and colourful ornaments create a magical, fairy-tale atmosphere that serve as the perfect backdrop for memorable holiday selfies and family photos,” he said.
Christmas is a time for feasting, and you can’t go wrong with Joburg’s incredible culinary scene.
Delaney explained many restaurants in the city offer special Christmas menus that showcase the diverse flavours of South Africa.
“From traditional braais to gourmet fine dining experiences, there's something for every taste.”
“Radisson RED Rosebank, for example, will be hosting a Christmas lunch that’s perfect for the whole family.”
He said that for R795 per person, you can enjoy a welcome drink on arrival, a buffet, live entertainment, and a kids' play area.
While the coastal cities might offer beachfront relaxation, Joburg has its own unique outdoor adventures to offer.
Delaney recommended taking a day trip to the Walter Sisulu National Botanical Garden where you can start your day with a hike, followed by a picnic.
“For those who crave more adventure, take a sho’t left into Soweto and get your adrenaline pumping with either bungee jumping or rock climbing at Soweto Towers,” he said.
“Continue the fun with a quad-biking adventure tour to Vilakazi Street.”
He added that Joburg's proximity to various outdoor attractions means “you can have an action-packed and memorable Christmas”.
Less congestion, more relaxation
One of the biggest advantages of celebrating Christmas in Joburg is the significantly reduced congestion compared to coastal cities.
“While Durban and Cape Town are inundated with holidaymakers, Joburg remains relatively peaceful and stress-free,” Delaney highlighted.
“You won't have to endure endless traffic jams or crowded beaches, which means more relaxation and less hassle.”
The hotel curator added that this provides the perfect opportunity to enjoy the city's attractions without the overwhelming crowds.
“So, this Christmas season don't be quick to hop on a plane to the coast,” he suggested.
“The City of Gold offers a unique and exciting Christmas experience”.