To 2.5 Km
Located approximately 55km from Johannesburg, Pretoria (which was founded in 1855) is one of South Africa’s three capital cities. Also called ‘Jacaranda City’ due to the thousands of bright purple trees scattered throughout the city and suburbs, Pretoria serves as the seat of the administrative branch of South Africa’s government.
The climate of Pretoria (or Tshwane) can be described as humid subtropical. Located approximately 1,339 m above sea level, the city's weather is synonymous with long hot rainy summers, yet short-but-mild winters.
One thing that stands out in Pretoria is the variety of different architectural buildings, influenced by the diverse cultures over the years. From the city centre to residential neighbourhoods, one can catch a glimpse of 19th century Dutch/British colonial architecture, post-modern designs, and neo-modern structures mixed with that distinctly South African style. The University of Pretoria (known to local students as ‘Tukkies’), which was established in 1908, can be regarded as one of the city’s most beautiful architectural designs.
In terms of tourism, Pretoria presents a charming mix of indoor- and outdoor entertainment for young and old. The Pretoria Zoo, for instance, is known as one of the top 8 animal sanctuaries in the world. And at Horseback Africa one can safely interact with baby lions, among others, while learning about South Africa's commitment to animal conservation.
But for those seeking entertainment in the form of retail therapy, the biggest problem will be which shopping centre to try first...
Among its many names and reputations, Pretoria is also regarded as a premier shopping destination. This is great news for the Pretoria population, which is estimated to be about 2.5 million. That means locals and guests should have no trouble navigating the city’s various malls and centres offering a variety of shopping options: from boutiques to bargain basements, and everything in between.
For a real shop-until-you-drop experience in Pretoria, Menlyn Park in Menlyn is a must. Considered the biggest shopping mall in South Africa, Menlyn Park has a floor space exceeding 177,000m² and over 500 stores (including Mr Price, Browns Jewellers, and Krispy Kreme). Over in Pretoria East, Woodlands Boulevard awaits with its collection of 150+ restaurants, cinemas, fashion- and beauty outlets, etc. (like Gadget Gallery and Dermalogica). For even more shopping options, plus discounts and special promotions, Brooklyn Mall in Brooklyn entices via Mugg & Bean and iStore, among others. With its open-air design, Irene Village Mall in Irene/Centurion sports a unique village-square vibe that places it above your average sleek shopping centre. But be sure to bring your credit card, for there are still over 90 ways to use it, including at Big Blue, Fego Caffe, Pringle of Scotland, and more. For those more interested in fresh food than fashion, consider The Hazel Food Market in the Greenlyn Village Centre in Menlo Park. Open every Saturday, this is where many of the local population flock for the best in freshly baked bread, organic vegetables, wines, desserts, flowers, and more.
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