The Las Vegas of South Africa, so to speak, awaits you, once you decide to use your car hire Johannesburg for a trip to Sun City, which lies around 150 kilometers in the northwesterly direction of Gauteng’s bustling capital. In the middle of the grass and bushland of the Highvelds, in close proximity to the Pilanesberg National Park, you find an oasis of entertainment venues, luxury hotels, artificial water compositions and countless sports facilities. Although the term oasis would not always have been signed by everyone: Protests were not lacking when the leisure complex Sun City was opened in 1979.
Let’s take a quick look back …
The name Sun City for the well-known resort did not derive from its location under the hot sun of South Africa – rather the owner of the South African Southern Sun hotel chain decided on adding a leisure complex to its business, bearing the same name. And there was a reason behind the implementation of an holiday destination in what was then the homeland of Bophuthatswana: Until 1994 this place was the only one in the country where gambling was not prohibited; the nickname “Sin City” was born.
But there was not only gambling, but also rocking: Well-known artists such as Frank Sinatra and Rod Stewart performed here, and not only a few local singers demonstrated their skills with successful debuts on the stage in Sun City. With the end of apartheid, construction work finally began again: The existing Sun City hotel with its casino, a golf course and a theater were joined by other accommodations, gaming centers and sports facilities, furthermore an amusement park with restaurants, conference rooms and event locations.
… and a more detailed one ahead
And now we finally get to the main point: To all the excitement that you can experience and enjoy once you decide to drive your car hire Johannesburg vehicle to this most popular tourist destination. To begin with, a recommendation: Don’t hesitate but book a room in one of the five luxurious hotels for at least one night. There is too much to see and do to squeeze it in one day!
How about a round of golf, for example? Beginners are as welcome here as professionals. If you are more of a sports fan than an active participant, simply look for one of the official tournaments in the annual event calendar and cheer on the world’s top golfers.
Other events are of course also waiting for you – whenever you peer into the large entertainment center, have a look at the many different stages that are spread over the entire resort, you will be rewarded with live music, cabaret and more.
And something else is worthwhile: A visit to the sunken city, with figures carved in stone, transporting you to the bygone days of African cultures that have now disappeared. As an alternative or add-on, walk through the artificial tropical forest with its exactly 1.6 million trees, have fun in water ponds and go for lots of other non-stop action.
Looking for action with adrenaline? Try and cross the Bridge of Times or the Lava Path – but be warned: It is quite possible that an earthquake or a volcano might break out while you are following the paths …
But don’t worry: Your safety is taken care of. The same as for your stomach: There is no shortage of restaurants with extensive menus full of culinary delicacies – no matter what you feel like – a family-friendly establishment with children’s dishes or exquisite menu sequences for gourmets. In detail …
Rushing waves in the middle of the inland
Park your car from your car hire Johannesburg in front of the Valley of Waves and you will almost fall into a tropical paradise in the middle of South Africa. A palm-fringed beach, lapped by crystal clear water, with sun loungers that you don’t have to reserve in the earliest morning hours … Take a break from city life and instead face the legendary Roaring Lagoon, the undisputed main attraction in the famous water park. In no longer intervals than every 90 seconds, waves up to heights of two metres soar into the air – surf safely on land and reward yourself with an island cocktail at the beach bar before ending your day with looks onto a mesmerizing sunset over the valley, and the mixing sounds of the waves and some live music.
Are you brave like a lion …
No, you won’t see lions here, and cats have not been sighted either. But you might have to be as strong as the king of the jungles to enter the Temple of Courage: The exciting slide runs almost vertically down for about 70 meters, passing underneath a bridge and finally extending into a small pool. Might that be a bit much of adrenaline, try the Tarantula and Scorpion slides or the Viper or Mamba. Just don’t let yourself be stung!
… or curious like a cat?
You can also enjoy the water paradise without getting wet, for example with a boat trip on the Lazy River, by relaxing in the Royal Baths or walking through the tropical forests over the Spider Web Sway Bridge, along hidden cave waterfalls, rare and beautiful types of plants always in view. There is something for everyone!
Please note: If your car hire Johannesburg car rental is about to start, follow the following attractions in Sun City, as “The Valley of Waves” will not be operational until July 8th this year due to maintenance work.
Are you lucky in the game?
You don’t have to be a gambler to indulge in the legendary glitz and glamor of Sun City Casino. Just the sight of the countless jingling slot machines and more than 40 popular table games such as blackjack, bacarat and roulette is worth a visit. And who knows? Maybe you will get the gamer fever after all, bet on the correct number – and your car hire Johannesburg is free, so to speak! Of course, you can also just relax with a cocktail, treat yourself to some delicious tapas and soak up the atmosphere in the ultra-modern casino with a drink in your hand.
Exciting entertainment for the whole family
Whether a music concert or a beach party, whether a children’s film or a bowling match: there is no lack of entertainment in South Africa’s popular leisure resort. Exciting indoor and outdoor activities can be undertaken in any weather. How about digging for gold in the mining store and looking for treasures in the scratch patch? You can also put a smile on your child’s face with a train adventure around the Waterworld Lake on the Stimela Train, a ride in a mini quad or a visit to real crocodiles.
Be sure to think of the thread
Do you know Greek mythology? It was only thanks to Ariadne’s thread that Theseus found his way out of the Minotaur’s labyrinth. It is up to you now to get out of the labyrinth of the lost city. And don’t regard it easy: After all, you have to do so without a GPS like the one in your car hire Johannesburg …
It is considered the largest permanent labyrinth in the southern hemisphere, made of artificial stone and wood and creates the illusion of an ancient archaeological discovery site. Since September 2012, school classes and company managers alike have been trying to find their way through the maze. Once you’ve made it, walk back to the entertainment center via the 100-meter-long suspension bridge. But don’t go too fast: Stop and take in the spectacular views of the resort, the Palace of the Lost City, and the Gary Player Golf Course. And if you should forget about the time, don’t worry: As soon as night falls, burning torches light up the paths in the chambers.
Play golf instead of roulette?
Speaking of the golf course: Not only water fun, not only exciting card games, not only films, live music and the like are on the program at the Sun City Resort. Driving there with your car hire Johannesburg vehicle, you get to one of the most famous golf destinations in the entire country at the same time – with two courses that were each designed by none other than the South African golf legend Gary Player himself.
The Gary Player Country Club takes you to a journey from the tropical forest to the desert. The 18-hole golf course was created with ancient style rock formations and weathered depressions, ii is considered one of the leading championship courses in South Africa. If you prefer to go jogging, use the five-kilometer running path along the course and, with a bit of luck, watch the skills of professional golfers on your way.
The Lost City Golf Course was built on hilly and rocky terrain. Also designed as an 18-hole 72-par course, while teeing off you enjoy impressive views over the bush field, 28,000 square meters of variable water features and almost forty Nile crocodiles, each one of them up to two meters long, in a pond in the form of the African continent.
Running, swimming, cycling
From trail runs to swimming and mountain biking, Sun City offers a range of outdoor sporting events all year round. Use your car hire Johannesburg and plan a sports vacation in Sun City or a fitness weekend with your family; get active yourself or take a look at the annual events calendar. The Citizen Trail Run is just as challenging for newcomers as experienced runners, the Mountain Bike Classic takes you to the neighboring Letsatsing Game Park, an unforgettable nature experience!
Spend the night like in paradise
Cascades Hotel: Before you get back in your car hire Johannesburg vehicle, book a night the Cascades Hotel. Like an Aztec temple, its tiered silhouette rises from the tropical surroundings, water cascades are reminiscent of hidden kingdoms. Despite its luxury, it is the cheapest hotel in Sun City and an ideal place for trendsetters and young families. Enjoy the cheerful and informal atmosphere and the colorful decor and treat your children to adventurous hours in the hotel’s own playground or with the tame farm animals.
Soho Hotel: Just a short walk from the popular Gary Player Country Club, the Soho Hotel continues with sport and luxury: work out in the gym, pamper yourself in the spa or enjoy culinary delights in the restaurant.
Palace of the Lost City: Inspired by the myth of a lost African kingdom, the hotel is located on the highest level of Sun City and attracts admiring glances from afar with its grand proportions, graceful towers, mosaics, frescoes and fountains.
With all this, please keep in mind that due to the current situation, tickets are only available in limited quantities and must be ordered in advance. Inquire about which events are currently taking place and what else you need to consider for carefree fun in the popular leisure resort.
At the end an eventful safari
If you would like to end your trip just as spectacular, but in the midst of nature and not in the midst of imposing buildings, make a detour to the nearby, malaria-free Pilanesberg National Reserve before you drive your car hire Johannesburg back to Jozi. With around 55,000 hectares the fourth largest safari park in South Africa, you can observe elephants, rhinos, lions and antelopes up close and listen to countless bird calls.
Don’t be surprised if you come across Stone Age and Iron Age remains during your trip with your car hire Johannesburg vehicle: The park is located on a volcanic crater that is said to have erupted a good 1,300 million years ago.
Since 1979, numerous actions have been taken to protect the local wildlife in particular. A total of around 7,000 mammals, reptiles and amphibians live in the reserve by now, and approximately 360 species of birds.
Be sure to drive your car hire Johannesburg car to the largest body of water in the game reserve in order to watch wildebeest, zebra or impala refreshing themselves on the dam or resting on the grassland nearby. Also try to catch a glimpse of kingfishers and cormorants – and in all that, don’t forget to take some photos of your very special car hire Johannesburg trip home with you!