Forest Town, Johannesburg

Lying snug in amongst some of the leafiest suburbs - Westcliff, Parktown and Saxonwold - of Johannesburg's northern parts, Forest Town was originally, as its name implies, set in what was a forest. It began as an area of smaller dwellings for workers and domestic employees of the Lords and Ladies of Westcliff and Parktown, and today it is one of the more sought after addresses in Johannesburg.

Forest Town is not only the residence of Jacob Zuma, which was raided during 2005 by the Scorpions after documentation for his corruption trial, but it was also the scene of a high profile police raid on a gay party in 1966 that led to a hue and cry and much moral panic. The consequence of the raid was that the government passed the Immorality Ammendment Bill of 1967 that criminalised all sexual activity between men, extending the legislation to include lesbians. This was thankfully repealed after 1994.

Forest Town lies within walking distance of the university and has as a consequence become home to many of the professional fraternity. It has managed to maintain its village-type atmosphere and has, by today's standards, large homes and wide tree-lined streets.

Nearby are both the Zoo and Zoo Lake, commonly used by residents of the area to walk dogs and generally stroll around the pretty waterside where a number of water birds are fairly common. There's a major shopping mall nearby, access into the city centre is excellent, and for night time activities one is spoilt for choice. Rosebank and the lovely villages of Mellville, Parktown and Greenside with their myriad restaurants and coffee culture are all within easy driving distance.

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