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Soweto, heartbeat of the nation

Infused with the history of the struggle against apartheid and alive with the energy of the city of gold, Soweto is a must-see for tourists in search of more than sun, sea and the big five.
16 June 1976

16 June 1976: ‘This is our day’

It is a day violently etched on the South African collective conscience. Commemorated over 30 years later as Youth Day, an official holiday, it is the day that honours the deaths of hundreds of Soweto schoolchildren, a day that changed the course of the country's history: 16 June 1976.

Mandela left his mark on many homes

Born in a small village in Transkei, Nelson Mandela moved to Johannesburg as a young man. He called several places home over the years, from a backyard shack in Alexandra to an upmarket house in well-heeled Houghton. In his retirement, he divided his time between the city and his rural retreat in Qunu.

Soweto: from struggle to suburbia

Twenty years of freedom have transformed Soweto, once a sprawling dormitory dumping ground for Johannesburg's black workers, into a green and attractive city of its own, with housing, parks, shopping malls, efficient public transport and a vibrant tourist trade.

The women in Madiba’s life

Mandela was married three times, and had four daughters, one of whom died in infancy. All his wives have radiated a special warmth and power, from the young Evelyn Mase to the fiery Winnie Madikizela to the wise Graça Machel.

Nelson Mandela: a life in service

Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela eventually rose to prominence as SA's first black president; in his later years, he became a prominent global statesman. This week, the world mourns his passing with tributes, tears and gratitude for his lifelong fight against all forms of discrimination.

Pantsula: from Soweto to New York

Homegrown street jive pantsula will soon be making its international debut as fledgling dance duo Skeleton Pantsula hits the Big Apple. With agile acrobatics and fancy footwork, the twosome is sure to win appreciative fans.
South African music

Stopping in Vilakazi Street, Soweto

One of South Africa's most famous streets - the only one in the world to have housed two Nobel Prize winners - has long been a must-see tourist attraction. Now, the Vilakazi Street precinct has become fully visitor-friendly, with public art, memorials and benches picking out its historical sites.

A walk on vibey Vilakazi Street

Home to two Nobel Peace prize winners, vibrant restaurants with sumptuous food, a TV station, museum and spa, Vilakazi Street in Soweto is a must for any visitor to South Africa.

The Mandela Family Museum

Nelson Mandela's humble little house in Orlando West, Soweto, now known as the Mandela Family Museum, is an interesting stopover for those keen to imbibe a slice of authentic history on the world's most famous former prisoner.

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