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Change of season - Gillooly's Farm © Nicole Castanheira, License



Johannesburg is one of South Africas biggest and busiest cities and sometimes its important to just take a break, step outside of the hustle and bustle and just enjoy some quiet time. Gilloolys farm is just the place to do this, a touch of countryside tranquillity right on your doorstep. Whether its a Saturday relaxing next to the water or a thirty minute lunch break in silence, Gilloolys is the place.

The farm, which is situated in the east of Johannesburg in Bedfordview, was originally owned by James Gillooly. Gillooly sold the 44 hectare piece of land to the city council in 1944, and the council decided to name the park after him. Today the park is well known for its walking trails, birds, recreational areas and its wonderful restaurant.

Its hard to believe that a park so close to the city could be a popular bird viewing spot but the park has more than 50 bird species, including White-breasted Cormorant, Reed Cormorant, African Darter, Grey Heron, Cattle Egret, White Stork, Egyptian Goose, Yellow-billed Duck, House Sparrow and Cape Wagtail. If you are an avid bird lover or even just an aspiring bird watcher, Gilloolys is a definite must-see. But there is more, where there are birds there must be a source of food for them and at Gilloolys this comes in the form of a large man-made lake, which is also home to a number of fish species like the Common Carp, Blue Kurper and Sharptooth Catfish (Barbel).

South Africa has some beautiful sunny days and what better way to spend those days than relaxing in the park. Families can enjoy having a braai at Gilloolys which can be arranged by the staff. And the picnic spots around the dam are popular with families, a place where they can relax and watch the birds, while the kids play.

Gilloolys Farm is close to main transport routes and is less than 15km from OR Tambo International Airport. And with something for every member of the family, it is well worth taking a day off from city life and go for a walk on the farm, reconnect with nature, and bond with your loved ones.

Gilloolys Farm is open every day except Sunday and entrance is free.

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