The implementation of lockdown Level 3 restrictions in December 2020 led to the closure of public parks, beaches and sporting facilities throughout South Africa. The decision was met with much disappointment as South Africans love their outdoor spaces.
National parks with controlled visitor access, such as the Kruger National Park, were not required to close to visitors, since controls and regulations were already in place to limit numbers and ensure social distancing.
Smaller nature reserves without visitor controls were required to close and could not permit entry to visitors under the revised lockdown Level 3 restrictions.
This led to a lack of options for many of Joburg’s outdoor and nature-loving residents. Walkers, hikers, cyclists and nature lovers have been deprived of local spaces for their outdoor pursuits.
Several nature reserves in Johannesburg have now reopened as they have implemented measures that comply with COVID-19 health and safety regulations for lockdown Level 3.
City Parks announced the reopening of five of Johannesburg’s nature reserves since adequate access control measures are now in place. The announcement was made via City Parks’ Facebook page.
Several Johannesburg nature reserves are permitted to reopen, having put adequate health and safety measures in place. The nature reserves which are accessible to the public are:
Residents can also visit the Melville Koppies Nature Reserve in Emmarentia, but by reservation only. This regulation has been put in place to control the number of visitors at the popular Johannesburg nature reserve.