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Johannesburg Sights

Union Buildings

  • Garden/Arboretum

Updated 11/12/2014

Fodor's Review

Built in 1901, this impressive cream-sandstone complex—home to the administrative branch of government—was designed by Sir Herbert Baker, one of South Africa's most revered architects. It is his masterpiece and closely resembles the Parliament Buildings in New Delhi, where he went on to work. The complex incorporates a hodgepodge of styles—an Italian tile roof, wooden shutters inspired by Cape Dutch architecture, and Renaissance columns—that somehow works beautifully.

Expansive formal gardens step down the hillside in terraces, which are dotted with war memorials and statues of former prime ministers. There's no public access to the building, but the gardens are perfect for a picnic lunch.

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Sight Information


Off Church St., Pretoria, 0002, South Africa

Sight Details:

  • Gardens open 24 hrs

Updated 11/12/2014


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