10 things to do with your kids in Joburg this holiday

Posted by Devlin Nightingale on 22 June 2012

School holidays. They are a rather peculiar thing. They are about as elusive as the last couple Pringles when you are young; then sneak up on you like a ninja as you get older. Yes the holidays are here! Ah, so that’s why there was nobody opening the gates this week at the school.

So if you have no ideas on what to do with this sudden mini-you always by your side let these 10 things for your kids to do this holiday guide you.


1. Artjamming

Due to the artiste inside me this sounds almost too good to be true. If only I was young and on holiday! Artjamming is what they like to term ‘paintertainment’ and combines music, painting and freedom of expression. They are currently offering a great holiday program for each day of the week here. Cost is around R155 per person with each day offering a different aspect of art from landscape painting to fun with foam. ‘Classes’ start at 10:00am and end at 12:00pm and are sure to ignite that creative flame inside.

Find a store closest to you here.


2. River Raiders Paintball

A common misconception is that Paintball is too dangerous for kids. Long gone are the days where you could run the course in just your shorts and a cigarette hanging out the side of your mouth. The protective headgear and overalls are very effective at deterring any potential harm (aside from the odd bruise or two) making this absolutely exhilarating activity great for your kids. River Raiders is located in Craigavon and equipment hire starts at R30 for the gun, chest and head protective gear and overalls  – paintballs cost R50 for 100 balls. There is also a special for R70 per person which includes equipment hire and 100 balls.
Call them on 011-704-1696


3. Valley of the Waves at Sun City

I grew up in Jozi and can still recall the ‘best day of my life’ from my first visit to Sun City. With water rides and tons of entertainment it is a great place to let the kids run amuck whilst you bask in the sun on the man-made beach. Be sure to pack sunscreen so that your experience doesn’t end in sunstroke like mine.

Entry to the Valley of the Waves is R60 for kids between 4-12 and pensioners with adults getting in for R110. In winter the resort opens at 10:00am and closes at 5:00pm
To book in to the resort call 011-780-7810 or click here.


4. Planetarium

The impact my first planetarium visit had on my young mind is still there in my question-everything attitude that I adopted shortly after our school tour there. It is a great idea for those really cold overcast days. There is no need to book unless you are coming with a massive group as the venue holds more than 400 people and is located in Braamfontein.

Tickets for the shows are R21 for kids and R34 for adults with a family special of R120 for the whole lot of you.
For more information call 011-717-1390


5. Northgate Ice Arena

Our climate never really allows for outdoor ice-skating on lakes. The skates double as anchors and you get that sinking feeling. Luckily Northgate, located in Northriding, has an indoor ice rink so that you can experience the joys of ice skating. The rink is open every day of the week and has a day (10:00am-5:00pm) and night (7:30pm10:30pm) session.

Entrance is R48 and you can hire skates for an extra R20.
Call them for more information on 011-794-8706


6. Gold Reef City

Synonymous with a good time for as long as I can remember, Gold Reef City is a great way to spend a day. Located just south of the city in Ormonde, there are about 31 rides to choose from with each one catering to the diverse tastes (and bravery) of your kids. One word of advice though, when on the Golden Loop don’t put your hands up as there is a silly wooden hut that is splinter-haven for the exuberant – only applicable for the tall.

Tickets for children under 1.3m are R100 and pensioners get in for R110 – students get in for R120 and adults R160.

Tel 011-248-6800 for any enquiries


7. Galaxy World Bowling

No! Not bowls, bowling. Growing up I had this uncanny ability to mix the two up and missed out on some really cool birthday parties. Introduce your kids to an awesome time at Galaxy World which has been newly relocated in Bedford Shopping Centre – they also have a branch in Pretoria. They even offer Glow in the Dark bowling which sounds amazing!

Entrance costs R45 and the doors open at 9:00am and close after the last session at 6:00pm.
Call them on 011-615-6877


8. Indoor Go Carting

If your kids are anything like me then take them Go Carting at the Randburg Raceway. Just keep an eye out for any deviant behaviour as even the most placid child could get into a shoving match for the best line. Fender benders are all part of the fun, I always say! Prices start at R110 per person but there is a height restriction of 1.1m as you need to be able to reach the pedals. They don’t allow you to stretch for the gas pedal. Turns out brakes are just as important. Whatever those are?
Call them on 011-792-2260 for group bookings and more information


9. Lion Park

If the Lion King is no longer providing the sort of awe for your kids as it should get your kids and come meet Simba in real life – in Lanseria of all places. Well maybe not Simba but I think names become irrelevant when faced with a real lion. Self drives and guided tours are available with the prices varying between R55-225 per person – for all their rates go here
Call 011 460 1814 for enquiries


10. Happy Acres

This has to be included. I was sent off to this camp, situated in Magaliesberg, as a youngster and although I vowed to never return, my friends loved it! It has been going since forever and has brought many a child joyous memories. It gave me an irrational fear of scorpions but whatever. Just warn your children to avoid ‘Scorpion Hill’.

The next camp kicks off this Saturday 30 June and will cost you R1150 for the week.
Call them on 083 449 5123 to see if there is still space


This is just the tip of the iceberg as there are many more things to do with your kids. Sometimes even just having a friend over can do wonders. At the very least though, I hope this guide has helped to cull off some of the boredom that tends to creep into children during the holidays.


Photo courtesy of John-Morgan


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