Among Jo'burgers Johannesburg is known as the "City of Gold".
The main commercial hub of South Africa, Johannesburg is all about making money. Fate has blessed the city with a profitable setting at the center of the Gauteng province being home to the world's largest gold mines. These have made Johannesburg a city of big fortunes and luxury hotels.
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As a prosperous destination Johannesburg causes various associations. Locals like their hometown for spectacular sunsets and jasmine in bloom brought to the city in spring. Tourists packed the city as it hosted the 2010 FIFA World Cup, while businessmen flock for big money. But all travelers cannot escape the fact Johannesburg grew from rocky land to busy metropolis in little more than 100 years.
Johannesburg began in 1886 when gold was found by the gold prospector George Harrison. It attracted gold hunters from throughout the world to relocate to the city. As a result of the gold rush, it took Johannesburg only three years to become the largest settlement in South Africa. Afterwards, the city was monopolized by several mining companies earning huge fortunes. Big money within the city led to the tensions between the oligarchs, the newcomers for gold to the area and the local government. This ended in the Anglo-Boer War and the area was taken over by the British.
Foreign presence in the city of Johannesburg is still reflected in its cityscape. Attractions include;
- Johannesburg Art Gallery, the biggest gallery in Africa
- The Apartheid Museum will take you a day to trace the city's past and present
- Origins Centre - The South African Museum of Rock Art offers excellent multimedia display of the rock art
- Johannesburg Planetarium, a location for unforgettable shows and displays
The British established influence and security of the area through racial segregation relocating the blacks to the outskirts. This resulted into a great backlash in the 1930s and 1940s, but the African population doubled in post war time because of job opportunities in Johannesburg.
Today the city's population of 8 million people, including Soweto, Lenasia and the West Rand areas, is big even by world standards. People in Johannesburg see beyond its industrial reputation toward the architecture of the Newtown Cultural District and Dolly Rathebe Street named to glorify the legend of South Africa's jazz.
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