South of Johannesburg’s downtown, Oakdene is tucked away among the nearby suburbs of Linmeyer, Rosettenville, Glenanda, and Bassonia. Oakdene is not remote from the city’s centre, despite the way it sounds. The region is five kilometres from Gold Reef City, just south of the city centre, and close enough to the airport to take 20 minutes or less to get there.
Like many other cities across the world, Johannesburg has an unwritten division between the northern and southern suburbs. The south considers anyone living north of Johannesburg’s city centre to be a snob, and they are probably right. The north would never consider going down south.
You would be mistaken, though, if you assumed that the city’s sole picturesque locations were located to the north. The kopje on Southpansberg offers residents a natural and less austere perspective than many comparable northern neighbourhoods, while portions of Oakdene are situated on a hill that at night offers breathtaking views of Johannesburg.
Oakdene has excellent access to the N12, which leads to the M1, and it’s a convenient area to live in thanks to nearby shopping centres. Then there is the city centre of Johannesburg, which is only seven kilometres away from Oakdene.
Its streets have a buzz about them that draws people in. The financial centre and the area around Newtown offer outdoor cafes that dispel the urban legends that deter most tourists from visiting the city’s core. Yes, there is violence, there are potholes, and there are taxi drivers who disobey every single traffic law, yet people now really stroll around Johannesburg.