Eyewitness Johannesburg: Barry Tanner from Bazzlewazzle’s Travels

Barry Tanner is a passionate full time travel blogger from Johannesburg in South Africa and the founder of Bazzlewazzle’s Travels. He loves to play tour guide, and sharing all these exciting facts and stories about his country. Here he was so very sweet to tell us a bit about his hometown.

THE TOURISTIN: Three words that characterize Johannesburg?

Barry Tanner: Diverse. Vibrant. Friendly.

THE TOURISTIN: How do you get around Johannesburg?

Barry Tanner: The majority of the time I drive but I also use The Gautrain fairly regularly and lately I've also been using Uber.

THE TOURISTIN: What is the best kept secret about Johannesburg?

Barry Tanner: The Rose Garden section of the Emmarentia Botanical Gardens, it's a fantastic spot for a Sunday picnic surrounded by lawns, fountains and some nice shade trees.

THE TOURISTIN: What is your favourite borough/suburb/area in Johannesburg and why?

Barry Tanner: Melrose, it's super convenient, being very central. The streets are lined with stunning jacaranda trees which are all flowering at this time of year. It's within walking distance of Rosebank Mall and Gautrain Station as well as a variety of pubs and restaurants in the adjacent Illovo.

THE TOURISTIN: The best place for a hot chocolate or coffee in Johannesburg?

Barry Tanner: How about a milkshake? In which case definitely The Fire and Ice Hotel in Melrose Arch. For Coffee I really like small street side places like Wolves in Illovo or Voodoo Lilly in Birdhaven.

THE TOURISTIN: What is one restaurant we must try out while in Johannesburg?

Barry Tanner: Wow, just one is tough. Eating, drinking and being merry is what we do best in Jozi so there are lots of options! For something with a local flavour though I would recommend Moyo, there's one at Melrose Arch and one at Zoo Lake.

THE TOURISTIN: Where would we meet you on weekends?

THE TOURISTIN: Do you have a favourite museum/gallery we all have to visit when in Johannesburg?

Barry Tanner: I think the cradle of humankind is definitely worth a visit and for those interested in South Africa's political history the apartheid museum as well.

THE TOURISTIN: What are some of your favourite places to shop for A) groceries and B) clothes in Johannesburg?

Barry Tanner: Shopping for either are not high on my agenda so you'll only find me in the shops when I absolutely have to be :-)

THE TOURISTIN: What souvenir shall we bring back from Johannesburg?

Barry Tanner: You'll find a lot of locals who make and sell a variety of arts and crafts made from all sorts of unusual materials, anything from old car tyres or tin cans to more traditional wood carvings. Browse the craft markets and find something that strikes your particular taste. If it is something made from natural materials like wood or stone please just make sure it's from a sustainable source and not taken from one of our many protected areas.

THE TOURISTIN: Barry, thank you so very much for your time. Safe travels.

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From Berlin with love

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Greetings stranger. I always try to be myself and to be a tourist as often as I can. I would love to get in contact with lots of hard travelling tourists who love to be out and about as much as I do. I am looking forward to all your comments. Thanks so much in advance.