16 Best Suburbs To Live in Johannesburg: A Comprehensive Guide

Johannesburg is the largest city in South Africa and a vibrant economic hub. It is home to a diverse range of neighborhoods and suburbs, each with its unique character and charm. Choosing the right suburb to live in can be a daunting task, especially for newcomers to the city. To help make the decision easier, we have compiled a list of the 16 best suburbs to live in Johannesburg.

The suburbs on our list offer a wide range of lifestyles and budgets, from trendy and upmarket to family-friendly and affordable. Our selection is based on factors such as safety, proximity to amenities, schools, and public transport, as well as the overall quality of life. Whether you are a young professional looking for a bustling nightlife or a family seeking a peaceful retreat, there is a suburb on our list that will suit your needs. So, without further ado, let’s dive into the 16 best suburbs to live in Johannesburg.

Understanding Johannesburg

Johannesburg, also known as Jozi or Joburg, is the largest city in South Africa and the provincial capital of Gauteng. It is a vibrant and bustling city that attracts people from all over the world. Johannesburg is a melting pot of cultures and offers a unique blend of modern and traditional lifestyles. In this section, we will explore the geography, climate, and culture of Johannesburg.

Geography

Johannesburg is located in the eastern part of South Africa, on the Highveld plateau, at an elevation of 1,753 meters above sea level. The city covers an area of 1,645 square kilometers and is surrounded by hills and ridges. The city is divided into several regions, including the Central Business District (CBD), Sandton, and Soweto. The CBD is the commercial and financial center of the city, while Sandton is the premier business and shopping district. Soweto is a large township located southwest of the city and is known for its rich history and vibrant culture.

Climate

Johannesburg has a subtropical highland climate, with warm summers and cool, dry winters. The city is known for its sunny weather, with an average of 8 hours of sunshine per day. The summer months, from November to March, are hot and humid, with temperatures ranging from 15°C to 30°C.

The winter months, from June to August, are cool and dry, with temperatures ranging from 4°C to 20°C. Johannesburg receives most of its rainfall during the summer months, with an average of 600 mm of rain per year.

Culture

Johannesburg is a cosmopolitan city with a diverse population. The city is home to people from all over the world, including Africa, Europe, Asia, and the Americas. Johannesburg is known for its rich cultural heritage and vibrant arts scene.

The city is home to several museums, galleries, and theaters, including the Johannesburg Art Gallery, the Apartheid Museum, and the Market Theatre. The city is also known for its music scene, with a variety of genres, including jazz, hip hop, and kwaito. Johannesburg is a city that celebrates diversity and offers something for everyone.

Criteria for Selection

When selecting the best suburbs to live in Johannesburg, several factors were taken into consideration. These factors include safety, proximity to amenities, affordability, accessibility, and overall quality of life.

Safety is a top priority when choosing a suburb to live in. The selected suburbs have low crime rates and are known to be safe for residents. Proximity to amenities such as schools, hospitals, shopping centers, and recreational facilities was also considered. The suburbs selected are close to these amenities, making life easier for residents.

Affordability is another critical factor when choosing a suburb to live in. The suburbs selected have a range of homes available at different price points, making them accessible to a wide range of people.

Accessibility is also important, and the suburbs selected are well-connected to major highways and public transportation, making it easy for residents to commute to work or other destinations.

Finally, overall quality of life was taken into consideration when selecting the best suburbs to live in Johannesburg. The suburbs selected have a good standard of living, with well-maintained infrastructure, good schools, and a range of recreational activities available to residents.

Overall, the selected suburbs offer a well-rounded living experience, with a focus on safety, accessibility, affordability, and quality of life.

Transportation and Accessibility

Johannesburg has a well-developed transportation system that includes buses, taxis, trains, and ride-sharing services. The Gautrain, a rapid rail network, provides easy access to the city center and other major destinations. It is a fast, safe, and affordable way to travel around the city.

Most of the best suburbs in Johannesburg are well-connected to the Gautrain network, making it easy for residents to commute to work or travel to other parts of the city. Some of the suburbs that are located near Gautrain stations include Sandton, Rosebank, and Parktown.

Apart from the Gautrain, there are also several bus services that operate in Johannesburg, such as Rea Vaya and Metrobus. These buses run on dedicated bus lanes, which makes them faster and more reliable than regular buses. In addition, there are also numerous minibus taxis that operate throughout the city. However, these taxis are not always safe and reliable, and it is recommended that residents use them with caution.

For those who prefer to drive, Johannesburg has a well-developed road network that connects the city to other parts of the country. However, traffic congestion can be a problem during peak hours, especially on major highways such as the N1 and N3.

Overall, transportation and accessibility in Johannesburg are generally good, with a wide range of options available to residents. Whether you prefer to use public transport or drive your own car, there are plenty of ways to get around the city efficiently and safely.

Education and Schools

Johannesburg offers a wide range of education options for families with children. There are many government-run public schools of varying quality, independent private schools, as well as international schools, making it easy for parents to find a school that suits their children’s needs.

Public Schools

Public schools in Johannesburg are run by the government and are free for all South African citizens. However, the quality of education can vary greatly depending on the school. Some of the top-performing public schools in Johannesburg include Jeppe High School for Boys, Jeppe High School for Girls, and Holy Rosary School.

Private Schools

Independent private schools offer an alternative to public schools and often provide a higher quality of education. Some of the top private schools in Johannesburg include St. Andrews School for Girls, St. Benedicts College, and Saheti School.

International Schools

For families who are relocating to Johannesburg from abroad, international schools offer a familiar curriculum and language of instruction. Some of the top international schools in Johannesburg include the American International School of Johannesburg, the British International College, and the Deutsche Internationale Schule Johannesburg.

Parents should research and visit schools before deciding on the best option for their children. It is also important to note that private and international schools can be expensive, so parents should consider their budget when making a decision.

Healthcare Facilities

Johannesburg is home to some of the best healthcare facilities in the country, with world-class hospitals and clinics located in various suburbs. Here are some of the best healthcare facilities located in the top suburbs to live in Johannesburg:

Sandton

Sandton is known for its luxurious lifestyle and high-end shopping centers, but it is also home to some of the best healthcare facilities in the city. The Netcare Sandton Hospital is a world-renowned facility that offers a wide range of medical services, including emergency care, oncology, and cardiology. The hospital has state-of-the-art equipment and highly trained medical staff, making it one of the best hospitals in the country.

Fourways

Fourways is a popular suburb located in the northern part of Johannesburg, and it is home to the Life Fourways Hospital. This hospital is known for its excellent facilities and highly trained medical staff. The hospital offers a wide range of medical services, including emergency care, maternity services, and a specialized breast care center.

Bryanston

Bryanston is a leafy suburb located in the northern part of Johannesburg, and it is home to the Mediclinic Sandton. This hospital is part of the Mediclinic group, which is known for its excellent healthcare facilities across the country. The hospital offers a wide range of medical services, including emergency care, maternity services, and a specialized cardiac unit.

Rosebank

Rosebank is a trendy suburb located in the northern part of Johannesburg, and it is home to the Netcare Rosebank Hospital. This hospital is known for its excellent facilities and highly trained medical staff. The hospital offers a wide range of medical services, including emergency care, oncology, and cardiology.

Randburg

Randburg is a popular suburb located in the northern part of Johannesburg, and it is home to the Wilgeheuwel Hospital. This hospital is known for its excellent facilities and highly trained medical staff. The hospital offers a wide range of medical services, including emergency care, maternity services, and a specialized cardiac unit.

Other Suburbs

Other suburbs in Johannesburg also have excellent healthcare facilities, including the Netcare Sunninghill Hospital in Sunninghill, the Life Wilgers Hospital in Pretoria East, and the Netcare Waterfall City Hospital in Waterfall City.

Neighborhood Safety

When it comes to choosing a suburb to live in Johannesburg, safety is a top priority for many people. Fortunately, there are several suburbs in Johannesburg that are considered safe and secure.

One of the safest suburbs in Johannesburg is Sandton, which is known for its high-end shopping malls, luxury hotels, and business district. The suburb has a low crime rate and is patrolled by private security companies. Other safe suburbs in Johannesburg include Parkhurst, Rosebank, and Westcliff.

Another safe suburb in Johannesburg is Kyalami Estate, which is a gated community with 24-hour security. The estate is known for its large properties, beautiful gardens, and outdoor activities such as horse riding and golf.

Sunninghill, Lonehill, and Fourways are also considered safe suburbs in Johannesburg. These areas are known for their security estates and large expat communities. They offer a host of shopping, entertainment, healthcare, and recreational options.

It is important to note that while these suburbs are generally safe, it is still important to take precautions and be aware of your surroundings. It is recommended to avoid walking alone at night, keep car doors locked, and not to display valuable items in public. By taking these precautions, residents can enjoy a safe and secure lifestyle in some of the best suburbs in Johannesburg.

Sandton

Sandton is a wealthy suburb located in the northern part of Johannesburg. It is considered the business hub of the city and is home to a number of large corporations, banks, and hotels. As a result, the area is bustling with activity and offers plenty of opportunities for those looking to work in the corporate world.

Housing in Sandton is generally more expensive than other suburbs in Johannesburg, but it is also more luxurious and offers a higher standard of living. The closer one gets to the Sandton CBD, the more expensive the housing becomes. However, there are still some pockets of the suburb that offer more affordable options.

Sandton is also home to a number of shopping centers, including Sandton City, which is one of the largest malls in Africa. The mall offers a wide range of shopping and dining options, as well as entertainment such as movies and live performances.

For those who enjoy the outdoors, Sandton offers a number of parks and nature reserves, including the Sandspruit River Trail and the Braamfontein Spruit Trail. These trails are popular among joggers and cyclists and offer a peaceful escape from the busy city.

Overall, Sandton is a great suburb for those who are looking for a luxurious lifestyle in a bustling business hub. While it may be more expensive than other suburbs in Johannesburg, it offers a high standard of living and plenty of opportunities for work and play.

Randburg

Randburg is a popular suburb in Johannesburg, known for its diverse and vibrant community. It is located in the northwestern part of the city and is home to a variety of residential areas, commercial centers, and entertainment venues.

Residential Areas

Randburg has a range of residential areas that cater to different lifestyles and budgets. Some of the popular residential areas in Randburg are:

  • Northcliff: This suburb is located on a hill overlooking Randburg and offers stunning views of the city. It is known for its high-end homes and apartments and peaceful atmosphere.
  • Ferndale: Ferndale is a well-established suburb that offers a mix of apartments, townhouses, and free-standing homes. It is located close to major highways and is home to a variety of shops, restaurants, and entertainment venues.
  • Blairgowrie: Blairgowrie is a leafy suburb that is home to a mix of older and newer homes. It is known for its beautiful parks and gardens and is a popular choice for families.

Commercial Centers

Randburg is home to a variety of commercial centers that offer a range of services and products. Some of the popular commercial centers in Randburg are:

  • Randburg Square: Randburg Square is a popular shopping center that offers a range of shops, restaurants, and entertainment venues. It is located in the heart of Randburg and is easily accessible by public transport.
  • Brightwater Commons: Brightwater Commons is a popular entertainment center that offers a range of activities for the whole family. It is home to a variety of shops, restaurants, and entertainment venues, including a cinema and a bowling alley.

Entertainment Venues

Randburg is known for its vibrant nightlife and entertainment scene. Some of the popular entertainment venues in Randburg are:

  • The Barnyard Theatre: The Barnyard Theatre is a popular entertainment venue that offers live music, comedy shows, and theater performances. It is located in Cresta and is a popular choice for a night out with friends or family.
  • The Rand Club: The Rand Club is a historic club that dates back to the early 1900s. It is located in the heart of Randburg and offers a range of events and activities for its members.

Overall, Randburg is a diverse and vibrant suburb that offers a range of residential areas, commercial centers, and entertainment venues. Whether you are looking for a peaceful residential area or a lively entertainment venue, Randburg has something to offer.

Midrand

Midrand is a young, vibrant city located about 25km from Johannesburg. It is known as the Hub of Gauteng and is highly sought after by both Johannesburg and Pretoria residents alike. Midrand is an up and coming area with large plots, lots of horses, and good schools. It is perfect for families who prefer to live in the countryside.

Property Options

Property options in Midrand are attractive and affordable. The average price of a 3 bedroom apartment in Noordwyk is around R800,000. There are also many other options available, including townhouses, houses, and apartments.

Amenities

Midrand has a range of amenities that make it an excellent place to live. The city is home to the Gautrain station, which provides easy access to Johannesburg and Pretoria. There are also many shopping centers, schools, and recreational facilities in the area.

Suburbs

Midrand is made up of several suburbs, each with its own unique character. Some of the best suburbs to live in Midrand include:

  • Noordwyk: This suburb is known for its excellent schools and affordable property options.
  • Kyalami: Kyalami is a beautiful suburb that is home to the Kyalami Grand Prix Circuit and the Kyalami Country Club.
  • Carlswald: Carlswald is a peaceful suburb that is perfect for families. It has many parks and open spaces, as well as excellent schools.
  • Vorna Valley: Vorna Valley is a popular suburb that is close to many amenities, including the Mall of Africa and the Gautrain station.

Midrand is an excellent place to live, with affordable property options, excellent amenities, and a range of suburbs to choose from.

Rosebank

Rosebank is a bustling suburb located in the northern suburbs of Johannesburg. It is known for its vibrant atmosphere, trendy restaurants, and shopping malls.

One of the main attractions in Rosebank is the Rosebank Mall, which offers a wide range of shops, restaurants, and entertainment options. The mall is also home to a rooftop market that takes place every Sunday, where visitors can find a variety of handmade crafts, food, and live music.

For those interested in history, Rosebank has several historical sites and museums, such as the Boer War Memorial, dedicated to South African heroes of the past.

Rosebank is also a popular destination for business travelers, as it is home to several office buildings and commercial centers. The suburb is conveniently located near Sandton, Johannesburg’s business hub, making it an ideal location for young professionals.

Overall, Rosebank is a diverse and lively suburb that offers something for everyone. Its central location, vibrant atmosphere, and range of amenities make it one of the best suburbs to live in Johannesburg.

Pros Cons
Vibrant atmosphere Can be busy and crowded
Range of amenities Higher cost of living
Convenient location Traffic can be an issue
Historical sites and museums Noise levels can be high
Popular with young professionals Limited outdoor spaces

Fourways

Fourways is a well-established suburb located in the northern part of Johannesburg. It is characterized by large concentrations of security estates, upmarket shopping centers, and excellent schools. Many expats choose to live in Fourways due to its convenient location and high-quality lifestyle.

Housing

Fourways has a wide range of housing options, from spacious family homes to modern apartments. The suburb is known for its gated communities and security estates, which offer residents a safe and secure environment. The average price of a house in Fourways is around ZAR 2.5 million, while apartments can be found for around ZAR 1.5 million.

Shopping and Entertainment

Fourways is home to some of the best shopping and entertainment options in Johannesburg. The suburb is home to the popular Fourways Mall, which offers a wide range of stores, restaurants, and entertainment options. Other popular shopping centers in the area include Cedar Square, Broadacres Shopping Centre, and Monte Casino.

Education

Fourways is home to some of the best schools in Johannesburg. The suburb has a range of private and public schools, including Crawford Fourways, Fourways High School, and Bryanston High School. These schools offer excellent education and extracurricular activities for children of all ages.

Transportation

Fourways is well connected to the rest of Johannesburg via major highways and roads. The suburb is located close to the N1 and N14 highways, which provide easy access to other parts of the city. Public transportation options in Fourways include buses and taxis, although most residents prefer to drive their own cars.

Overall, Fourways is a great suburb to live in for those seeking a high-quality lifestyle in a safe and convenient location.

Bryanston

Bryanston is a suburb located in the heart of Fourways, Ferndale, Morningside, Woodmead, and Sunninghill. It is an affluent area that is popular for its wide range of amenities, convenient location, and lovely selection of properties.

The suburb offers visitors and residents plenty of retail destinations, top-notch restaurants, and entertainment activities. Some of the attractions in the area include the Bryanston Organic and Natural Market, Bryanston Shopping Centre, and Bryanston Country Club.

Bryanston is mostly known for its beautiful freestanding homes on tree-lined streets that explode in a purple sea of blooming jacarandas in late spring. The suburb also has stately homes as well as apartment complexes in Morningside, Sandown, and Hyde Park.

For those looking for proximity to Sandton while still possessing its own unique character, Bryanston is an ideal location. The suburb offers a strong selection of family homes, making it an excellent choice for families looking to settle down in Johannesburg.

In terms of property investment, Bryanston is a hotspot, and properties in the area are more expensive. However, they provide proximity to business hubs, restaurants, a vibrant nightlife, and other attractions, making it an ideal location for young single professionals.

Overall, Bryanston is a desirable residential area that grows on you, and once you live here, it’s impossible to leave.

Melville

Melville is a trendy and vibrant suburb located in the northwest of Johannesburg. It is known for its bohemian feel, tree-lined streets, and beautiful scenery. The suburb is home to many artists, writers, and musicians, and it has a lively nightlife scene.

One of the most significant attractions in Melville is the Melville Koppies Nature Reserve. The reserve is a popular spot for hiking, running, and cycling, and it offers stunning views of the Johannesburg skyline. The reserve is also home to a variety of wildlife, including baboons, dassies, and snakes.

Melville is also known for its diverse high street, which offers a range of restaurants, cafes, and shops. The suburb is particularly popular for its vintage clothing stores, which sell unique and one-of-a-kind pieces.

The suburb has a mix of residential properties, including old farmhouse-style homes and modern apartments. The properties in Melville are generally more affordable than those in Sandton, Johannesburg’s business hub, making it an attractive option for young professionals and families.

Melville is a safe and walkable suburb, and it has a strong sense of community. The suburb has a community policing forum, which works to keep the area safe and secure.

Overall, Melville is a great suburb for those looking for a vibrant and trendy neighborhood with a strong sense of community.

Parkhurst

Parkhurst is a small, trendy suburb located in the northern part of Johannesburg. It is mainly a residential area but is well-known for its vibrant street life, sidewalk cafes, and boutique shops.

The suburb is characterized by tree-lined streets, charming cottages, and a strong community spirit. It is a popular destination for young professionals, artists, and families who want to enjoy a relaxed lifestyle while still being close to the city’s business and entertainment hubs.

Parkhurst is also famous for its culinary scene, with a wide range of dining options available. From trendy cafes to gourmet restaurants, there is something to suit every taste and budget. Some of the popular eateries in the area include Nice on 4th, The Wolfpack, and Craft.

The suburb is also home to a number of parks and green spaces, including the Delta Park and the Johannesburg Botanical Gardens. These offer residents the opportunity to enjoy outdoor activities such as picnicking, jogging, and cycling.

In terms of property trends, Parkhurst has seen steady growth in recent years. According to Property24, the average listing price of properties currently for sale in Parkhurst ranges from R1,000,000 for a one-bedroom apartment to R4,000,000 for a five-bedroom house.

Overall, Parkhurst offers a unique blend of urban convenience and suburban charm, making it a great place to live for those who want to enjoy the best of both worlds.

Sunninghill

Sunninghill is a well-established suburb in Johannesburg that offers a high quality of life to its residents. It is located in the northern part of Johannesburg, close to Sandton, which is home to many large businesses and corporations.

Housing

Housing in Sunninghill is diverse, ranging from apartments to townhouses and large family homes. There are many secure complexes with access control and security patrols, making it a safe place to live. The average property sale price in Sunninghill is around R1.8 million, which is slightly higher than the Johannesburg average.

Amenities

Sunninghill is home to several shopping centers, including Sunninghill Village Shopping Center and The Square Shopping Center, which offer a variety of shops, restaurants, and entertainment options. The suburb is also home to several schools, including Reddam House Sunninghill and St. Peter’s College.

Connectivity

Sunninghill is well-connected to the rest of Johannesburg, with easy access to major highways such as the N1 and the M1. The suburb is also close to the Gautrain station in Sandton, which provides quick and easy access to the airport and other parts of Johannesburg.

Lifestyle

Sunninghill is a great place to live for those who enjoy an active lifestyle. The suburb is home to several parks, including the Sunninghill Park and the Norscot Koppies Nature Reserve, which offer hiking trails and picnic areas. There are also several gyms and fitness centers in the area, including Virgin Active Sunninghill and Planet Fitness.

Overall, Sunninghill is a great suburb to live in Johannesburg, offering a high quality of life, excellent amenities, and easy access to the rest of the city.

Final Thoughts

Choosing the right suburb to live in Johannesburg can be a daunting task, but it is crucial to find the perfect fit to ensure a happy and comfortable lifestyle. The 16 suburbs highlighted in this article offer a diverse range of options, from trendy and urban to peaceful and family-friendly.

Sandton is the most popular suburb for young professionals due to its proximity to restaurants, shopping centers, nightlife, and commercial centers. Bryanston is another popular choice for families with its spacious homes and large properties.

For those who prefer a more bohemian and artistic vibe, Melville is a great option with its trendy cafes, bars, and restaurants. Northcliff also offers a beautiful and established neighborhood with stunning scenery.

Other suburbs like Westcliff, The Parks, Hyde Park, Dunkeld, and Saxonwold offer a mix of old-world charm and modern amenities, making them great options for those who want the best of both worlds.

It is important to note that the cost of living can vary significantly depending on the suburb, with some being more affordable than others. However, all of the suburbs listed offer a high standard of living with top-notch amenities that cater to their residents’ needs.

Ultimately, the decision of which suburb to live in depends on personal preferences and lifestyle needs. By considering factors such as proximity to work, schools, and amenities, anyone can find the perfect suburb to call home in Johannesburg.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the top 10 suburbs to live in Johannesburg?

According to ooba.co.za, the top 10 suburbs to live in Johannesburg in 2022 are Sandton, Bryanston, Morningside, Fourways, Parkhurst, Parktown North, Houghton, Illovo, Hyde Park, and Melrose Arch.

What are the safest suburbs in Johannesburg?

Johannesburg has a reputation for being a dangerous city, but there are many safe suburbs to live in. According to expatica.com, some of the safest suburbs in Johannesburg are Sandton, Rosebank, Melrose Arch, Hyde Park, and Illovo.

Where is the best place to buy property in Johannesburg in 2023?

The best place to buy property in Johannesburg in 2023 depends on your budget and lifestyle. According to property24.com, some of the best places to buy property in Johannesburg are Blue Valley Golf & Country Estate, Fourways Gardens Residential Estate, Dainfern Golf Estate, and Waterfall Country Estate.

What are the most affordable suburbs in Johannesburg?

Johannesburg can be an expensive city to live in, but there are some affordable suburbs. According to expatarrivals.com, some of the most affordable suburbs in Johannesburg are Randburg, Roodepoort, and Kempton Park.

Which suburbs are the most popular among expats in Johannesburg?

According to expatica.com, some of the most popular suburbs among expats in Johannesburg are Sandton, Rosebank, Melrose Arch, and Hyde Park.

What are the most expensive suburbs in Gauteng?

Gauteng is the province that Johannesburg is located in. According to ooba.co.za, some of the most expensive suburbs in Gauteng in 2022 are Sandhurst, Hyde Park, Dunkeld, Illovo, and Westcliff.

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