Discover Johannesburg

Johannesburg, sometimes known as Egoli, the city of gold, gets its name from its history as South Africa’s biggest gold mining town. “Joburg,” as most locals call it, is located in South Africa's Gauteng province and is not only the largest and wealthiest city in South Africa, but also one of the major economic powerhouses on the African continent. 

As the economic capital of South Africa, Johannesburg remains a bustling, diverse city steeped in a rich cultural history and bursting with forward-focused creativity. The Central Business District, or CBD, is at the city’s core, but was abandoned in the 1990’s by corporations, government and people with means to leave.

However, over the last several years, the area has experienced a dynamic cultural renaissance that continues to this day. The Maboneng precinct epitomizes this urban renewal and revival. The area now boasts an incredible mix of restaurants, coffee shops, clothing boutiques, art galleries, and more, including an open air market on Sundays.

As in all major cities, taking simple precautions is best, : know where you’re going, and don’t flash valuables around. All GSP excursions are planned with safety in mind, but it’s important to know that personal safety measures are really no different than those you would use in New York City, London, or Tokyo! 

Surrounding the Central Business District area are diverse, green, quiet suburbs extending in all directions to rural areas replete with farms, wildlife sanctuaries, and parks. To the South of the city lies Soweto, South Africa’s largest township that was home to some of the first youth movements against apartheid.

Johannesburg continues to be a centre of social justice progress for the city. To the north lies Sandton, the wealthiest “zip code” on the continent, and home to the Johannesburg Stock Exchange, where some of the biggest South African and international corporations are represented. 

While at GSP, participants will have the opportunity to experience the unique vibes of Johannesburg on excursions to historic sites, museums and neighborhoods.

Visits to the Apartheid Museum, the Lion & Safari Park, the Mandela House, local shops, and more are a much-loved piece of the GSP experience. Students will get first hand knowledge of what’s on-trend through the eyes of local entrepreneurs and social innovators during service learning projects. Global Scholars Program is your chance to experience one of Africa’s — and the world’s — most exciting cities!

Did you Know?

Johannesburg is dotted with 150 heritage sites, half of which are national monuments.
Over 10 million trees can be found throughout Johannesburg, making it the largest man-made forest in the world.
Johannesburg is the world's largest city that has not been built on a coastline or beside a river or lake.
The Constitutional Court, the highest court of South Africa, is located in Johannesburg
40% of the world's human ancestor fossils were discovered in Johannesburg.
Johannesburg has become known as the most powerful commercial centre on the African continent

Download our brochure to learn more about this transformative opportunity!