So I keep getting people asking me for tips on where to go and what to do with their kids. I’ve been trying to sit down and write a list for a while now but as any multi-tasking, working mum would know every day seems to escape me and my to do list just keeps getting longer.
Firstly I have to pay homage to the Adventure Clubs app. What an absolute life changer that was for me.
After our move back to Johannesburg from Cape Town I was at a loss of what to do with my boys in a big city and struggled to find a mums group like I had in Cape Town. In Johannesburg I find most mums have less flexibility with their working hours …. Until a friend suggested a download the adventure clubs app and our lives changed forever 🙂 It’s opened up my eyes to a whole new Johannesburg, discovering hidden gems and unique places to take my boys. So thank you thank you thank you!
That being said, here’s my list, together with some of the places we have discovered with Adventure Clubs, of fun things to do, with your kids in the big city:
Lion and Rhino Safari Park (Lanseria Side) – New and improved, the recently re-opened Lion and Rhino park is bigger, better and has a lot more interaction for kids.
Crocodile City (Just before Lanseria) – We had such a good time at our outing to Croc City. They boys got an educational talk on crocs, on how thick their skin is and got to hold and observe their eggs. They also house a number of reptiles and much to my horror my boys lined up to hold the snakes L.. After a tour of the croc park the kids ran around counting and feeding as many tortoises as they could. The play area of course provided hours of entertainment.
Old MacDonald’s Farm Yard (Lanseria Side) – This is a true hidden gem. Home to the Fat Olive restaurant and a Beach bar, Old MacDonald’s has free roaming Zebras, geese, duck and a whole mini farmyard for kids to feed/interact with. It doubles up as a party venue as well as a restaurant. Theres even canoes to take out on a paddle on the small lake.
Crazy Kids Farmyard (Randburg) – A diamond in the middle of a bustling city. Crazy Kids has also recently had a bit of a refresh with some new animals (including another pony and a friendly pig), Crazy Kids is literally smack bang in the middle of a residential area in Randburg. It has a huge variety of play equipment for kids, a ton of bikes to ride around and an epic sandpit. This is a winner, everyday of the week.
Clay Café (Irene) – About twenty minutes out of Johannesburg Clay Café is opposite the iconic Red Barn in Irene. Kids can choose from a large variety of ceramics to paint with lots of accessories to add patterns/ shapes to their masterpieces.
Pappachinos (of course – Broadacres seems like the biggest, Clearwater mall also has a bike track)
Lori Park Zoo (Midrand) – Holds a nice variety of crocodiles, predator birds and of course lions/ leopards – though I do feel for the bigger cats as their enclosures are very, very small.
The Johannesburg Zoo – A timeless classic and always good for a family day out.
Delta Park – Probably holds the best play area out of all Joburg parks. It also has glorious walking paths with gigantic trees shading them.
Lonehill Park – Between Lonehill Park and Angelo’s Restaurant you are guaranteed a good time with the kids. Lonehill Park has a beautiful enclosed play area for kids and Angelo’s Kitchen borders onto the park with additional jungle gyms, bike tracks and games for kids
Raspberry Picking at Fieldberry Farm (When in Season) – A morning spent in the fields at Fieldberry farm is a morning well spent. A beautiful day out for the entire family, kids will have an amazing time selecting and picking the juiciest berries to pick. After all their hard work mum and dad can relax on hay bales around the play area while sipping on a handmade smoothie. SO much fun. Raspberry season typically ends around April.
Alliepad Alpakkas – A bit of a drive out of Johannesburg, Alliepad Alpakkas is just before Magaliesburg and has the most adorable fluffy Alpacas to go crazy over. Make it a weekend drive or wait for one of their festival days when you can get a tour around the farm, learn more about how they get wool and feed the Alpacas.
Willow Feather Farm (Pretoria) – Originally started off as an Indigenous tree farm, Willow Feather now hosts a nursery, tea garden and awesome Farmyard for kids. They have a number of interactive activities for kids and the number of animals in the Farmyard is exceptional. Alpacas, pigs, bunnies, cows. Kids can get up close and personal to the animals and of course participate in feeding. There’s also a wonderful kiddies play area to keep little ones busy while mums can enjoy hot tea and scones.
If its rainy (or sunny) – Yeesh for Kids in Woodmead is a firm favourite of ours. With a huge soft kids play area, Yeesh goes the extra mile by hosting cupcake/cookie decorating sessions, as well as an art corner where kids can paint a range of items ranging from t-shirts to canvas to ceramic ornaments.
Tres Jolie (Ruimsig) – Traditionally thought of as more of a wedding venue, Tres Jolie actually is a littler wonder world for kids. They offer a touch and feel farmyard, giant sand pit, pony and camel rides, and a big jungle gym. You can bring your own food to feed the animals or buy packets at the Kiosk.
These are just some of the places I’ve explored with my boys and I know there are probably hundreds of more hidden gems waiting to be discovered. Where are some of your favourite places to go?