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As the largest and busiest airport in Africa, the Johannesburg Airport is a popular hub for those traveling in and out of the city. Formally called OR Tambo Airport, this complex is 14 miles northwest of the center of the city. This busy airport is the gateway to many sub-Saharan countries. Travelers who have a long layover will have no problem finding something to keep them busy while they are waiting for their flight. In fact, you’ll find approximately 100 retail shops and 14 lounges to peruse and enjoy. The airport even has a dry cleaner, several banks, a pharmacy, and a spa. And if you need medical assistance while you are there, they have a travel clinic that is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. It is almost like an indoor city.
The airport is located in Johannesburg, which is the largest city in South Africa. The city’s nickname is the city of gold because a gold reef was found in 1884 that brought on the Witwatersrand Gold Rush. After the finding, the population of Johannesburg went from a few to 100,000 people in 10 years. In the eastern section of South Africa, the city has a subtropical highland climate with an average high of 71 degrees and an average low of 50 degrees, making it a great place to visit all year long.
Fun Fact: The City of Johannesburg is home to the world’s largest man-made forest with 10 million trees and a plethora of wildlife.
If you have a long wait for your flight, take advantage of the time you have to look around. Get up and explore. Even if you are a local, with about 100 shops, restaurants, and a variety of services, there is a good chance you have not been to them all. The Johannesburg Airport really is like an indoor community with just about everything you need and then some. They even have 20 boutiques just for clothing, 11 jewelry stores, and six souvenir shops. Here are some things recommended by Bounce you should not miss while you are waiting for your flight at Johannesburg Airport.
Grab a slice at Piece a Pizza. They have two locations to choose from. One is in the International Landside area, and the other is in the Duty Free Mall. You can get any kind of pizza you want here and some that you have never heard of.
If you want to be waited on hand and foot, stop by Cappello. They have everything from T-bone steaks to cheeseburgers here, and with an elegant but laid-back atmosphere, you may not want to leave.
For a sweet treat, head to Cosmic Candy. They have locations in the Domestic Airside area and the Central Terminal Building. Delicious chocolates and snacks.
Visit Constitution Hill, a former prison that was still in use in 1987 but is now a museum.
Head to the mall at Rosebank and do some shopping.
Stop in at the Out of Africa gallery in the airport and shop where you can see a great variety of crafts and artwork made by locals. From wooden masks to handwoven clothing, these unique items make perfect souvenirs.
Another way to relax is by getting a massage, facial, or a mani-pedi at Letsema Xpress Spa.
Listen to some tunes at Music Moods, located in the Duty Free Mall. They have all sorts of local voices like Johnny Clegg, Freshly Ground, and Ladysmith Black Mambazo.
Airport Link Shuttle
Whether you are on a layover, returning home from a vacation, or arriving here for a holiday, you will want to get on the move soon after touching down. The airport has a great variety of things to keep you busy, but Johannesburg has much more! If your accommodation is not quite ready, store your stuff with Bounce in the city before looking around. Bounce recommends these intriguing spots.
Apartheid Museum: Just a few minutes from the airport, the Apartheid Museum has everything you want to know about the apartheid story. The museum has a plethora of artifacts, exhibits, photos, and even film footage. Located on Gold Reef Road and Northern Park Way, make sure you drop off your luggage at a Bounce spot on your way because they do not allow bags inside.
Museum Africa: This museum is perfect for learning about the African culture as well as flora and fauna in the area. You can see historic and archaeological items, rock art, and paintings from hundreds of years ago. Right next door is the Workers’ Museum, where you can learn the story of migrant labor in Africa. Do make sure to leave your suitcases with a Bounce partner first because they are not allowed.
Melville Koppies Nature Reserve: The geology here goes back three billion years. You can see tools from the Stone Age, the Iron Age, and even an old iron-smelting furnace. The botanical garden here is a must-see as well.
City Sightseeing: If you want to take a tour of the city and learn more about it firsthand, this tour company will take you on a trip. Over 16 stops around town highlight the main attractions. Leave your bags with a Bounce partner first, so you don’t have to worry about them while you explore.
Gold Reef City: If you have more than a few hours and the kids are with you, it's worthwhile to visit this large theme park. In fact, you don’t even need the kids. There is plenty for adults to do here too. They have 10 thrill rides just for teens and adults like the Tower of Terror, Runaway Train, and Raging River Rapids.
Rondebult Bird Sanctuary: Don’t miss the 235-acre Rondebult Bird Sanctuary while you are here. They have over 190 types of birds with many that you cannot see anywhere else. Leave your bags with Bounce, but grab the camera first to capture these beautiful creatures to share on your favorite social media sites. Look for other wildlife like the slender mongoose, reedbuck, or springbok.
Montecasino: Are you feeling lucky? Try your luck at the Montecasino. Play some slots, hit the tables, eat some food, and watch a movie at this giant complex. If you still need some souvenirs or some retail therapy, they also have over a dozen shops from bookstores to unique gift boutiques.
Convenient to the Met, which does not allow luggage at coat check. Very easy check in and check out process, with lovely people at the front!
This was so cool!!!! Great service, extremely easy to use, and totally affordable! I didn't know where I'd leave my luggage while we explored San Fran, so I easily Googled luggage storage and found this company. At first it was a little odd dropping my bag off at a chocolate store, but the lady at the register was able to immediately pull up my reservation without any problems and then she put a lock on my suitcase and gave me a card to get it back with. She pushed the bag to the back of their storage room and I came back about 6 hours later to pick it up. Great service, I will definitely be using this again when I travel!
Can’t believe I haven’t used this service until now. So easy & convenient. I 100% recommend.
The price for luggage storage near Johannesburg Airport is just $5.90/bag for the entire day.
Yes. Every bag is tagged with a security seal and comes with the $10,000 Bounce Guarantee. Every location is required to uphold tight security precautions. You may be asked to show ID and you will be required to use a credit card to book through Bounce in advance. With hundreds of thousands of bags stored, you can count on Bounce to handle your baggage near Johannesburg Airport.
Yes, there are storage lockers and many other luggage drop off points in the Johannesburg Airport area. Bounce has multiple luggage storage locations nearby Johannesburg Airport and in the broader Johannesburg area where you can conveniently store your luggage with full security and the $10,000 safekeeping gurantee.
The most popular restaurants to visit when near Johannesburg Airport are Capello, Ocean Basket, and Piecea.