After a much needed night of rest, we boarded the bus for our excursion to the Maboneng Precinct.
First, we stopped at Carlton Center, a 50-story skyscraper which once stood as the tallest building in all of Africa. From the top story, we were able to see all of Johannesburg, including Maboneng.
As we learned, Maboneng is an area full of artwork, restaurants, and shops. Our tour guide, a Johannesburg native, told us that Maboneng means a place of light. We made stops on our walking tour to view murals and learn about Maboneng’s history. Our tour guide made a point to tell us about how people should live, work, and have fun in the same place. Maboneng seems like the perfect place to find all of those things.
One of our favorite murals depicted Nelson Mandela boxing, which the tour guide told us was one of Mandela’s hobbies. “That’s how he survived in prison so long and still was able to run the country!” he joked.
After the tour, we had lunch at a marketplace. Many different cuisines were offered including Lebanese, Chinese, South African vegan, and South African American fusion. We enjoyed a vegan coconut fried rice meal served in a lettuce bowl and a chicken burger with vegetables and South African sauces.
There were also boutique shops in the marketplace, which sold traditional South African clothing and home goods.
Overall it was a very enjoyable and interesting day. We had a lot of fun getting closer with both our individual chommies and other peoples’ chommies.
We all look forward to visiting the Apartheid museum tomorrow. That’s all for now – Ali & Julia C.