The Newtown Cultural Precinct is the heart and soul of Johannesburg's cultural landscape, a place where the creative arts are nurtured and celebrated. It has become  the new buzz area to visit.

Previously rundown, the Johannesburg Metropolitan put a fantastic programme in place (Igoli 2000) resulting in huge improvements and revival.

Centred on Mary Fitzgerald Square, Newtown is home to three theatres,  art galleries, craft workshops, dance studios, live music venues, nightclubs, bars and restaurants. Among Newtown Cultural Precinct's more famous landmarks are Museum Africa, the Market Theatre and Gramadoelas restaurant.

How to get here

The Newtown Cultural Precinct is in downtown Johannesburg.

How to get around

The Newtown Cultural Precinct is easily accessible by taxi, bus or car, and there is plenty of parking available. You can also visit Newtown as part of an organised tour of Johannesburg.

What's happening

Newtown hosts some of the Johannesburg's biggest events including the Joy of Jazz Festival, the Newtown Diwali Festival, Arts Alive, SA Fashion Week, the Africa Day concert and the Dance Umbrella.

 

Other spots of interest are Horror Café (street poetry and music), Songwriter’s Club, Carfax and the Bassline. South African Breweries offers beer tours from Tuesdays through to Saturdays.

 

In Newtown, you can also explore the Sci-Bono Discovery Centre, browse alternative bookshops or shop for local art and crafts at numerous galleries. Nearby is the Oriental Plaza, a famous – and cheap – shopping destination.

Tours to do

For a quintessential Johannesburg night out, look no further than Newtown. Drop in at Kaldi’s Coffee for a pick-me-up brew from Ethiopia, Tanzania or Kenya; watch the sun slip down over the City of Gold from a trendy café overlooking the square; take in a show or an art exhibition before a night of clubbing or grooving to live jazz. Creative Newtown will keep you endlessly entertained

Who to contact

Newtown Cultural Precinct 

Tel: +27 (0)11 688 7890

Web: www.newtown.co.za

What to eat

Newtown has a number of popular restaurants catering to all tastes. For an African-inspired meal try Moyo (pan-African cuisine) or Gramadoelas (traditional South African cuisine).

Perhaps because of its politically turbulent past, Newtown Cultural Precinct remains resolutely colour-blind. Since the mid 1900s, musicians, artists, poets and dancers, irrespective of race, gathered here, seeking relief from life under apartheid through creative expression. This vein of defiance still keeps Newtown's creative pulse throbbing, so if cutting-edge, controversial and boundary-breaking creative expression inspires you, you'll find it here.

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