Hotels in Pretoria, South Africa
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It’s all in the name; in Tshwane and Pretoria, SA
The city of Pretoria was re-named Tshwane in 2005. This was seen as a brave move on the part of the ANC and the start of a new dawn for the city. Life is never simple though and the feeling against the move was so strong that many still call it Pretoria. Monuments and buildings underline Tshwane’s role as one of three capital cities in South Africa; as do the many government buildings. Commerce is a further vital facet and the city’s numerous sporting and entertainment events encourage a healthy tourism market. Outstandingly beautiful are the many purple-flowered jacaranda trees; leading to Tshwane’s third name, Jacaranda City.
Tshwane -Pretoria is a sightseer’s delight
Dominating the city’s Church Square is a bronze statue of Oom Paul who, in the 1800s, was regarded as the Father of Afrikanerdom. From Union Buildings at Meintjes Kop, there are panoramic views of the city, a Garden of Remembrance and war memorial. The African Window Museum is a top tourist haunt with exhibitions ranging from South African Heritage to Rock Art. Political leader, Paul Kruger’s house retains some of his personal belongings from the 1800s although Kruger National Park is probably his most famous legacy. Then, Mapoch Ndebele Village houses examples the architecture and art of the Ndebele people. Tshwane –Pretoria’s many specialist museums provide a further insight into life as it used to be in this Gauteng Province. Accommodation choices for visitors are equally varied and include hotels ranging from budget to the finest possible star rating. These are to be found in the centre of the city and in the attractive suburbs such as Arcadia, Lynnwood and Silver Lakes. The Burgers Park area hotels are most conveniently located for access to Pretoria’s business district.
Join in Pretoria’s fairs and fun events
There always seems to be something happening in Tshwane – Pretoria, including and of special interest to the city’s many tourists; antique and craft fairs. If looking for an authentic reminder of your visit here, or maybe even an unexpected antique bargain; these are the places to visit. The physically more inclined will want to join in the Springbok Vasbyt race. During the August and September period, the annual Pretoria Show also draws crowds of hotel-staying visitors. There is an agricultural theme here and the show is staged at the Events Centre. The Formula 1 Powerboat Grand Prix takes place annually, just north of Pretoria and every three months sees - and hears - the Jazz Indaba Festival. The Jacaranda Festival is staged in October when the estimated 50,000 trees are gloriously in full bloom. With the Jacaranda being such a prominent and attractive feature; it’s strange that they didn’t just change Pretoria’s name to the attractive Jacaranda City.
A potted history of Tshwane – Pretoria
Long before the Tshwane element of the city’s current name was thought of and in 1855, Pretoria was founded by one Marthinus Pretorius who was a leader of the Voortrekkers. He named it after his father who scored a famous victory over the Zulus in the gloriously gory Battle of Blood River. Annually, in December, there is a national holiday and a Day of Reconciliation to mark the 1838 Zulu/Boer war. Tshwane – Pretoria is strategically situated to the northern end of Gauteng Province; part of the old Transvaal. This is the smallest province in South Africa, but mind-blowingly rich and very highly populated. It comes as no great surprise to learn that, in the Sotho language, Gauteng means Place of Gold. Certainly, golden memories are waiting to be discovered by visiting tourists as they explore this vibrant city.
Diverse dining choices … or chips with everything
French and Indian cuisine is very popular and there’s a re-assuring supply of chips on many menus. Venturing into the more adventurous, you might find items such as Tilapia and Kinklip . These are among some of the region’s fish dishes and may not be familiar to visiting tourists. Chicken, beef and steak dishes also appear on menus, but those featuring goat and antelope may be more difficult to digest. Vegetable selections might include plantain, cassava leaves and green banana cooked in sauce. Droëwors is a type of dried sausage and there isn’t the space to begin describing Bunny Chow . There are different flavours to savour, but you are in a different country; so … in for a penny. One traditional favourite which has a universal appeal, is Bobotie . This consists of spicy mince with an egg topping. In this cosmopolitan city of Tshwane – Pretoria, there are, of course, restaurants catering for every cuisine preference. Hotels too; offer varied menus. These are designed to appeal to the many nationalities that descend on the city in search of sometimes new experiences.