To celebrate Gauteng's jacaranda spring, Johannesburg In Your Pocket has teamed up with Gautrain – the best way to travel between two jacaranda cities. This past weekend (Oct 15, 2023) we curated an exciting and fun afternoon photowalk and invited more than 30 photographers to join us and explore a jacaranda route between Rosebank and Pretoria Central. This is just one in a series of jacaranda experiences we have curated that take place throughout October. To see all of our jacaranda experiences and book your spot to join us, go here.
These experiences also form part of our annual #jacarandainyourpocket photo competition, in which we celebrate the natural beauty of our cities, and encourage you to explore.
We kicked off our #JacarandaInYourPocket 2023 season with a photowalk to Pretoria, with partner Gautrain, and were generously hosted at stops at Rosebank Sunday Market, Southern Sun Pretoria and a residential apartment block with awe-inspiring views owned by City Property, the people behind 012 Central, a fun lifestyle space in Pretoria.
We met at Rosebank Mall and headed upstairs to explore the wonderful Rosebank Sunday Market and feast on an array of international food from Indonesian curries to Lebanese shawarma, chow mein and dumplings to fruity bubble tea, all at budget-friendly prices. From ceramics and quirky light fixtures to antiques, vintage and traditional African clothing and accessories, there's not much you can't find here if you enjoy browsing or are keen to shop.
We then took a short walk across the road to Rosebank Gautrain Station. It's an easy trip to Pretoria Central from here (just 31 minutes, we counted). To find out all you need to know about the Gautrain, read our article here. Long known as the 'Jacaranda City', Pretoria's trees are lush and glorious. Different to Joburg, you can find them in the city and the suburbs.
We disembarked at Pretoria Gautrain Station and from there headed out on a 10-km route to explore the purple streets from the city centre to the suburb of Arcadia. The mix of architectural styles added exciting dimensions to the walk, and the trees were in peak form. The purple canopy created a haze along the city streets, framing different sites in a spectacular fashion, including the Union Buildings.
Southern Sun Pretoria welcomed us warmly and hosted us for drinks and a delicious late lunch, a much-needed rest from the day's activities. We sat in the cosy garden of the hotel, where birdsong is the only sound you hear, and enjoyed noteworthy service from their team.
The last stop was at a residential building owned by City Property, who also own 012 Central, a fun lifestyle complex in the city. We were ushered into an empty apartment on one of the higher floors for a view to marvel at, and of course to get some last snaps before the sunset. Spotted throughout the city, Pretoria's jacarandas are really something to behold. If you didn't make it to our Pretoria photowalk not to worry, you can discover where to find the best jacaranda views and streets in Joburg and Pretoria with our guide here.
Our #JacarandaInYourPocket 2023 photo competition is in partnership with Gautrain, the best way to travel between two jacaranda cities.
See here for how to enter our #JacarandaInYourPocket 2023 photo competition and what you can win from our amazing partners.