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  • Address: Johannesburg, South Africa
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Formally known as the South West Township, Soweto has historically been synonymous with resistance to apartheid, South Africa’s former policy of racial segregation. In the 1970s and '80s, the sprawling district on the edge of Johannesburg was frequently in the news, especially as the Soweto Uprising of 1976, a series of protests led by black schoolchildren, produced one of the world’s most iconic news images: that of child Hector Pieterson, shot by police, dying in another protester’s arms. This complex history has shaped the township, where its cultural richness and important political significance now shine through in its moving museums, historical monuments, and strong traditions held by its some 3 million residents. Read on to learn how to visit Soweto, one of the largest black urban settlements in South Africa.


Best Ways to Visit Soweto

Take a guided tour to learn about the rich history, culture, food, and modern life in the township. For any Soweto tour, your tour guide will most likely meet you in central Johannesburg or Pretoria and provide roundtrip transportation by car; both full-day and half-day tours are available. A visit to the community can also be combined with a general Johannesburg city tour or a short Pretoria tour. Otherwise, it’s a 15-mile (25-km) drive along N17 to reach the South Western Township from downtown Johannesburg. While it’s possible to drive yourself, the township’s layout can be confusing.


What To See in Soweto

Johannesburg’s most famous district features a number of well-known tourist attractions, including the history-rich Apartheid Museum and the Hector Pieterson Museum, where Soweto Uprising victims are honored. The emotional Nelson Mandela House (Nelson Mandela National Museum), set on Vilakazi Street, is dedicated to the history and mission of the famous South African leader, while the former home of another Nobel Prize winner and social rights activist, Desmond Tutu, can be found just down the street. Visitors can learn about other local leaders through stops at buildings that honor their memories: the Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital in Diepkloof and the Regina Mundi Church, one of South Africa’s largest Roman Catholic churches.


Kliptown, the oldest settlement in Soweto and home to Walter Sisulu Square, is visited for the role it played as the site of the 1955 Congress of the People. This unprecedented meeting produced the Freedom Charter, one of the first documents of resistance during the apartheid era. Also of note is the FNB Soccer Stadium on the border of Soweto, where many South Africans spend their leisure time watching games; and the Orlando Towers, prominent Soweto landmarks that were once cooling towers for a coal-powered plant but are now popular bungee-jumping sites covered in murals by local artists.

Tours & Tickets

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Soweto Half-Day Sightseeing Tour, Johannesburg, null
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 3

Soweto Half-Day Sightseeing Tour

4.5 star rating: Recommended 27 Reviews

Gain insight into the history and culture of Soweto, the largest urban area of Johannesburg, on this 4-hour tour by coach or minivan. Hear about the role ...  Read more

Location: Johannesburg, South Africa
Duration: 4 hours (approx.)

From USD $62.39
Half-Day Tour of Soweto in Johannesburg, Johannesburg, Bus & Minivan Tours
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 3

Half-Day Tour of Soweto in Johannesburg

4 star rating: Recommended 2 Reviews

Soweto is a cluster of townships, on the south-western flank of Johannesburg and was created in the 1930s. It is the biggest black urban settlement in Africa ...  Read more

Location: Johannesburg, South Africa
Duration: 4 hours (approx.)

From USD $59.87
Johannesburg, Soweto and Apartheid Museum Guided Day Tour, Johannesburg, Half-day Tours
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 3

Johannesburg, Soweto and Apartheid Museum Guided Day Tour

This tour is the perfect tour for those who would like to know about the City of Gold in day. Discover the hidden history of Soweto where the famous world Icon ...  Read more

Location: Johannesburg, South Africa
Duration: Flexible

From USD $167.39
Soweto Township Tour from Johannesburg or Pretoria, Johannesburg, Day Trips
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 3

Soweto Township Tour from Johannesburg or Pretoria

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 1 Review

Enjoy a complete tour of the best that Soweto has to offer. Located South West from Johannesburg, you will catch a glimpse of the lives of its estimated 3 ...  Read more

Location: Johannesburg, South Africa
Duration: 4 hours (approx.)

From USD $55.14
Private Tour of Soweto in Johannesburg, Johannesburg, Cultural Tours
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 3

Private Tour of Soweto in Johannesburg

Soweto is a cluster of townships, on the south-western flank of Johannesburg and was created in the 1930s. It is the biggest black urban settlement in Africa ...  Read more

Location: Johannesburg, South Africa
Duration: 4 hours (approx.)

From USD $132.34
Soweto 6-Hour Guided Tour from Johannesburg or Pretoria, Johannesburg, Private Sightseeing Tours
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 3

Soweto 6-Hour Guided Tour from Johannesburg or Pretoria

Take a half-day tour of Soweto, a township in the Johannesburg area, with a guide to visit some of its most historically significant sites. You'll see Nelson ...  Read more

Location: Johannesburg, South Africa
Duration: 6 hours (approx.)

From USD $177.63
Soweto Day Tour from Johannesburg, Johannesburg, Half-day Tours
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 3

Soweto Day Tour from Johannesburg

This tour will help you understand the history of South Africa during the Apartheid years. Take a walk at Vilakazi street which is the only street in the world ...  Read more

Location: Johannesburg, South Africa
Duration: 8 hours (approx.)

From USD $114.22
Johannesburg Highlights: Guided Day Tour, Johannesburg, Day Trips
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

Johannesburg Highlights: Guided Day Tour

4.5 star rating: Recommended 2 Reviews

On this full day tour your guide, who was born and raised in Soweto, will take you past all the hotspots in Soweto, the Apartheid Museum and sites in ...  Read more

Location: Johannesburg, South Africa
Duration: 10 hours (approx.)

From USD $77.99
Soweto and Johannesburg Guided Day Tour, Johannesburg, Day Trips
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

Soweto and Johannesburg Guided Day Tour

Embark on a tour where you will have full experience of historical and city sightseeing of Soweto and Johannesburg! See some of the most important locations as ...  Read more

Location: Johannesburg, South Africa
Duration: 8 hours (approx.)

From USD $74.83
Private Tour: Cultural Soweto Tour from Johannesburg or Pretoria, Johannesburg, Day Trips
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

Private Tour: Cultural Soweto Tour from Johannesburg or Pretoria

4 star rating: Recommended 1 Review

Curious about Johannesburg and would like to experience the culturally rich South African Township of Soweto? Then this popular half-day Soweto tour is for ...  Read more

Location: Soweto, South Africa
Duration: 5 hours (approx.)

From USD $129.98

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