The city of Pretoria (Tshwane) developed at a more
sedate pace than Johannesburg, and the town planners
had the foresight to include an abundance of open
spaces. Pretoria has more than 100 parks, including
bird sanctuaries and nature reserves.
Large numbers of Voortrekkers
arrived in the region in the 1850s, and an air
of history pervades much of central Pretoria,
especially Church Square, around which the city
has grown. The square was the site of the first
church, the first markets and the first shops.
Progress has brought to Pretoria
high-tech shopping centres, museums, art galleries
and multi-culinary restaurants. The city has four
universities and a number of scientific institutes,
including the Council for Scientific and Industrial
Research (CSIR) and the Onderstepoort Veterinary
Research Institute, both internationally renowned.
Within easy reach, day walks provide a relaxing
introduction to the region's natural habitats,
many inhabited by indigenous animals and birds.