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Ideal duration: 2 days

Best Time: August to October (spring) Read More

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"The City of the Purple Blossoms"

Pretoria Tourism

The administrative capital of South Africa, Pretoria is one of Gauteng's most important cities. It is the executive seat of the government of South Africa and one of the three capital cities (along with Cape Town and Bloemfontein). Pretoria is popularly known as the Jacaranda City due to more than 70,000 Jacaranda trees which colour the city purple in October-November each year.

Pretoria was named after Andries Pretorius, the famous Voortrekker leader who led the clan to victory at the Battle of the Blood River. The city has been the administrative capital of South Africa since 1855, when it was founded. Owing to its history, Pretoria is home to numerous historical buildings, museums and monuments. It is also home to many game reserves, parks, and South Africa's national zoo. An important attraction in Pretoria is the Voortrekker Monument, which honours the great legacy of the Voortrekkers.

Situated just 55kms from Johannesburg, Pretoria is comparatively a simple and quiet city lying in the foothills of the Magaliesberg mountains, straddled by the Apies River. The slow pace of life and the beauty of Pretoria is what attract tourists the most.

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Currency in Pretoria

The South African rand is the only currency accepted and all major credit and debit cards are accepted in the well established places. ATMs are placed throughout the city.

Shopping in Pretoria

Pretoria is home to numerous shopping malls, local shopping centres, and small stores. The Menlyn Shopping Centre is a huge shopping mall with over 300 stores, one of the largest in the entire continent, from international and local brands. The same goes for the Kolonnade Centre, with a great collection of brands and restaurants. The Brooklyn Mall is another popular place to shop and eat, home to around 150 stores of various interests. Also, check out the Hazel Food Market. It is a vibrant and lively food market where you will find all sorts of local produce, food trucks, and street foods. 

Nightlife in Pretoria

Pretoria has decent nightlife options. Although it's not the kind of party city you would hope for, it's still got many great bars and clubs. Hatfield Square is a popular nightlife neighbourhood, and since it's close to the university of Pretoria, the crowd is a wonderful mix of the young and the old. It is the first place you should head for. Burnett and Duncan streets are dotted with many popular nightclubs and bars, and the parties usually go on till 02:00 in the night.

History of Pretoria

Pretoria was founded in 1855 by Marthinus Pretorius, a Voortrekker leader. The city was named after his father, the hero of the Battle of Blood River, Andries Pretorius. Pretoria was founded to be the new capital of the South African Republic, and it became so in 1955. After the Second Boer War in 1900, Pretoria surrendered to the British. Afterwards, the Republics of ZAR and Orange River Colony, along with the Cape Colony and Natal Colony, became the Union of South Africa in 1910, of which Pretoria was made the administrative capital. It has continued to hold that position since then, even after South Africa became a republic in 1961.

Language of Pretoria

Many African languages are spoken in Pretoria, the largest of which is Afrikaans. However, there are many English speakers in the city as well, so you shouldn't have any problems on your travels.

Pretoria Customs

  • General rules of courtesy and politeness thrive in the South African culture and here in Pretoria as well. The community, however, places a strong emphasis on social positions, such as being respectful to elders. The more modern and Western Africans are a little more casual in their demeanour.
  • Tipping is customary in South Africa. In restaurants and bars with service, 10% of the bill is enough, and a few rands at petrol stations, parking lots and security guards are sufficient. Tipping guides and drivers in the region of ZAR 10 - 20 per day per person is also enough.

Religion of Pretoria


Daily Budget for Pretoria

Daily expenses in Pretoria are not too many, mostly because the currency has favourable exchange rates to most currencies. Depending on where you eat, attractions you visit, how you get around, how you shop etc daily expenses can be expected as follows Budget trip : ZAR 400 - 800 Comfortable trip : ZAR 1000 - 1500 Luxury trip : ZAR 1800 - 2300

Exchanging Money in Pretoria

Currency exchange booths are easily found in Pretoria. There are several offices in commercial areas such as the Menlyn Centre and other malls. There are several bureau de exchanges, banks and many international ATMs that also make it very easy to withdraw currency. Carrying your passport is necessary while exchanging currency, and also make sure you're exchanging at authorised dealers.

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Pretoria Photos

Pretoria, South-Africa
The Palace of Justice
Old Counsel Chambers or the Raadsaal of the ZAR
The Central Business District

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FAQs on Pretoria

What is the best time to visit Pretoria?

Pretoria is a charming city during spring. It's several tens of thousands of Jacaranda trees start blooming, and the several parks and gardens throughout the city become an eclectic combination of colours and odours. Temperatures in the Pretoria during this time are very pleasant, ranging from 15 degree to 28 degrees Celsius.
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What are the places near Pretoria?

The top places near to Pretoria are Johannesburg which is 53 km from Pretoria, Durban which is located 533 km from Pretoria, Cape town which is located 1310 km from Pretoria, Knysna which is located 1048 km from Pretoria, London which is located 9029 km from Pretoria

What are the things to do in Pretoria?

The top things to do in Pretoria are Voortrekker Monument, Rietvlei Nature Reserve, Union Buildings, Pretoria National Botanical Garden, Kruger House Museum, Loftus Versfeld Stadium. You can see all the places to visit in Pretoria here

What are the top hotels in Pretoria?

There are 519 in Pretoria which can be booked through Holidify. The most popular hotels in Pretoria are Touch of Class Guest House, Sekelbos Guesthouse, Burkea Park Villa, LeoZet Self catering apartment, Roux's Res, Grace. You can see all the hotels in Pretoria here

What is the local food in Pretoria?

Pretoria being a major city has a great choice of cuisines and restaurants. Fast food joints can be found in several places, and the international joints like KFC, Domino's, Pizza Hut etc have many branches in Pretoria. As far as restaurants go, La Pentola is a top class international restaurants. It has a huge variety of cuisines on offer as well. Kream is another very popular restaurant, with a brilliant menu and sophisticated atmosphere. Also, Mosaic is a fantastic restaurant, with reputed chef Chantel Dartnall handling the kitchen and sending out some delectable dishes. Other great restaurants include Crawdaddy's, Zest Bistro, Hemingway's, and also Burger Bistro.
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