Wordtravels

Wordtravels

Newtown Cultural Precinct

The Market Theatre, Newtown © Bobbyshabangu
The Market Theatre, Newtown © Bobbyshabangu

Located in the city centre, this complex of buildings has been upgraded and restored as part of the city fathers' urban renewal policy and includes several attractions. For instance, the Market Theatre and Museum Africa are housed in a Victorian building in Bree Street - originally Johannesburg's fresh produce market. The Museum of Africa is particularly worth a visit, as its exhibits tell the city's story from its beginnings to the present day. The display includes an interesting section about the Treason Trial of the 1950s, in which Nelson Mandela and other activists were accused of plotting against the state. The same building houses a photography museum and the Museum of South African Rock Art. At its eastern end is the Market Theatre, famed for being the venue for many protest theatre productions in the apartheid era. Also in the area is the South African Breweries Centre, which offers a tour detailing brewing history through some reconstructed gold-rush pubs and shebeens (township bars). Along Jeppe Street is the Oriental Plaza, the commercial centre for the Indian community.

Newtown is also renowned for its nightlife, with wonderful restaurants, jazz establishments, and clubs that stay open until the early hours.

Website: www.newtown.co.za