The Johannesburg Botanical Gardens are a popular escape from the busy city, and the adjacent reservoir created by the Emmarentia Dam provides an additional space for outdoor recreation.
The Emmarentia Dam opened in 1912, and its reservoir is used for boating and fishing. On its western shore, the Johannesburg Botanical Gardens cover more than 308 acres and include an herb garden, a succulent garden, and the rose garden from which the rest of the property grew. The rose garden was started in 1964.
The eastern side of the Emmarantia Dam is also good for picnics, barbecues, and outdoor recreation, primarily consisting of woods and grassy meadows.
The Johannesburg Botanical Gardens are just over 3.7 miles from the city center, and a popular spot for weekend picnics when the weather is nice. The grounds are open year-round from sunrise until sunset, and entry is free.