Jacaranda trees line the streets of Bryanston, an upmarket residential suburb in the north of Sandton, Johannesburg. Their purple flowers are just one example of a neighbourhood that always looks pleasing on the eye. With broad boulevards and rolling gardens, Bryanston has managed to retain its rural village-like atmosphere, despite being surrounded by the developments of modern Johannesburg.
Bryanston is mostly a residential area, but it does have easy links to various attractions in north-west Johannesburg. The entertainment and casino complexes of Fourways are a few kilometres north, while the restaurants and bars of central Sandton lie to the south. In recent years, Bryanston has developed into a corporate business area, which rivals the one in central Sandton. Microsoft and Google both have their African headquarters in Bryanston, at a development called The Campus.
The suburb is connected by the N1 Western Bypass, which divides it from Fourways. Sandton is the closest train station, around five kilometres south. When coming from O.R. Tambo International Airport, the quickest transfer would be to use the Gautrain to Sandton, then take a private taxi. Lanseria International Airport is a good alternative when flying into the city. Like most places in Johannesburg, public transport is in the form of shared minibus taxis, and they’re simply known as taxis, although they are also called “African taxis” to distinguish between private taxis.
Bryanston has evolved into one of Africa’s most affluent suburbs, after previously playing a defining role in the development of South Africa. Nelson Mandela and other members of the ANC were arrested at Liliesleaf Farm in 1963. The farm is now open to the public and contains many original documents from when the ANC had their headquarters here, including a signed copy of the demands they presented to the apartheid government.