Health benefits of short Holidays


For everyone, life seems to be moving a lot faster than it used to and trying to make time for downtime is becoming as stressful for the average person as any board meeting. For a lot of us, the thought of taking and extended holiday simply means more to catch up on later; more you’re missing at work, higher piles of unread inbox messages that need to be seen to yesterday.

These days, a lot of us simply don’t have the time to make the most of an epic and extensive holiday, which many of us have confused for not being able to get away at all; but this is simply not the case.

Even the shortest holidays can have a profoundly positive impact on us. A couple of days or three or four can make all the difference to stress levels, your ability to focus on the year ahead, managing your moods, and most certainly, being productive.

So, before you sigh and chuck that travel pamphlet out of site, let’s run over a few good reasons why you should consider even the shortest getaway to anywhere, it doesn’t even have to be somewhere far away.


One of the biggest mood benefits to going on holiday is also one of the most overlooked ones. Once you have booked a room in your desired luxury guesthouse, made travel plans, taken that time off and solidified the idea of getting away for a bit, you create something for yourself to look forward to.

The anticipation of going away can have as much of a positive impact on your emotions, focus, and general wellbeing, as actually being on holiday.

For many, the excitement of going away is the best part, and we all feel that excitement in one way or another. This feeling alone is an exceptionally powerful stress breaker, and you don’t need to plan a lengthy excursion to get it.


A lot of people feel like travelling for only a couple of days is something of a waste of time, and it is easy to fall into that, especially if you plan on travelling far away. The truth is, any amount of downtime is good for you, even the shortest bursts of it.

A couple of days can make all the difference to how you tackle the rest of the year, in fact we will explore a little later why shorter holidays are often far less stressful for working people.

Still, even the shortest holidays present a lot of opportunities for you recharge and create some fond memories you can call back to later.


Those with busy schedules don’t see a long holiday in the same light as everyone else. For a lot of people, going away and disconnecting for a long time means an even fuller inbox, an ever-expanding list of things to do when you get back, and a feverish catchup that quickly dismantles the relaxed state of a holiday.

During long trips, the temptation to check in with the office, phone clients, answer emails, and get things done remotely, is too strong, you likely won’t spend all that time actually relaxing.

A shorter holiday, on the other hand, can be done without these external worries filling your headspace. A couple of days is short enough that catching up won’t be a problem, which means that you can focus purely on unwinding.

Trust us, those nature walks, and luxury guesthouse breakfasts are much better when they don’t remind you of outstanding emails.


One of the things I love most about short holidays is that you must focus your intentions. There isn’t enough time to do everything, so you need to pick the things you want to do the most.

This means you will spend your short holiday doing things you really want to do, even if that just means a couple of days basking by the pool.


Here at the African Elephant Guest House, we offer the ideal solution for a short, local getaway. Visit our website today to find out more about our locally charming guest house in Germiston.

The top benefits to local holidays


For many people, the idea of taking a local holiday is, well… a bit of a waste of time. Holiday makers prefer getting out into the unseen and creating new experiences, and for many of us, that means hours of travelling to far off, exotic destinations.

The changes we have seen in the world over the past year has had us revaluating how practical this is. Travel restrictions, both locally and abroad, and the uncertainty of what will happen next, this all makes the prospect of travelling stressful, if not actually impossible.

So, more and more South Africans are discovering the joy of hometown holidays. A change of scenery just a few kilometres away that still leave you feeling refreshed.

It’ hard to believe, I know, but there are plenty of reasons why a hometown holiday would do you the world of good. Read through a few of these before booking accommodation now in Johannesburg.


The most noticeable benefit to local holidays is that they cost significantly less than your average coastal or international adventure.

A large portion of the costs of going on holiday include air and travel costs. The further you go, the more this will cost you. For a lot of people, particularly those who feel they aren’t in the best position to travel, the cost of getting there adds unnecessary stress to an otherwise relaxing activity.

Local holidays, that require far less travelling, don’t present this difficulty.


Hometown holidays are a lot more straightforward for a couple of reasons.

We’ve already discussed how the cost is simplified, but there is also the amount of time spent travelling, finding someone to house-sit or feed the pets, finding things to do, spending money on accommodation, food, and entertainment, making sure you have everything, getting to where you need to go on time, not knowing where the attractions are, sticking to an itinerary… there is a lot to take into account when travelling far.

Local holidays don’t come with any of these added concerns, making it a remarkable stress-free way to take a break.


Tacking on to the fact that you will be more familiar with your surroundings and available activities, you will be able to take a less structured approach to your holiday.

For many holiday makers the fun lies in finding new things and filling up your schedule with them. This is fun and exciting, for sure, but sometimes you want to do things a little more loosely, or you may want to stop and smell the breakfast buffet.

Local holidays come with fewer expectations; you are more likely to do things you want to do instead of filling an itinerary with every possible activity. This will leave you more relaxed, more recharged, more ready to get back into life when you’re done holidaying.


The further you travel, the more you feel like you need to make better use of your time. This either means filling your schedule to the brim or spending more time on holiday. This is great, don’t get me wrong, but it is also more expensive, can be a lot more stressful, and can complicate your schedule considerably.

Local stays, because there is less travel, organisation, and cost involved, generally make for the perfect short getaways to break up the month, or to just spend a couple of days unwinding.


Travelling a great distance might take you to brilliant new locations, but they also take a lot of energy. Anyone who has spent hours in a car, on a plane, at an airport, waiting for taxis, trains, busses, and visas, can tell you just how exhausting the whole process can be.

A lot of people identify with the sentiment of needing a holiday from your holiday when its all said and done.

Naturally, travelling to closer locations takes a lot of the time and effort out of it, making a trip less of an ordeal, leaving you feeling genuinely relaxed when it’s over.


Why not take advantage of a local holiday right now. Take a few days to unwind and get away from it all, without having to actually get away. Visit the African Elephant Guesthouse website to book accommodation now in Johannesburg.


Why local tourism is perfect right now


The South African travel industry is seeing a bit of a renaissance right now. People are starting to look a little closer to home for holiday experiences. For those that consider the glass half empty, it’s easy to acknowledge this as a step down from our grandiose pre 2020 travel plans, for those that find opportunity in everything, it presents and excellent chance to see those unseen local attractions and hideaways that we overlooked before.

The truth is that luxury guesthouses in Johannesburg are becoming popular business because people are discovering the joy of local holidays, travelling within your own country, district, or city. Getting just far away enough to break away from it all without disrupting your schedule or bank account.

Over the last year there have been a lot of events that have worked together to make this happen. Let’s explore a few of them here.


You know what makes the world seem like a much bigger place? Being confined to your home or apartment for the better part of several months during a pandemic. The need to travel after being locked down is a strong feeling, even when there were still severe travel restrictions in place.

This has led to a broader definition of what people consider to be local, with just about anything outside of your immediate surroundings feeling refreshingly exotic.


Economic times are not at their best, it’s no secret, everyone is feeling it. This means that nearly everyone has had to scale back significantly on what they spend their money on. Holidays, being a complete luxury, were the first thing to go for many people.

Local holidays offer the same reprieve from the hustle and bustle at a much more affordable price, what with all the travel expenses amounting to almost nothing.

This means that they offer a way for people and families to get out there and unwind for a bit, without spending from their tightly knit budgets.


Between a pandemic and a limping global economy, the average South African’s stress levels have never been so high. The fact that we can’t just dip into our savings to go somewhere and unwind doesn’t really help.

But for those willing to give local tourism a chance, it presents one of the best ways to completely unwind, without the added stress of exorbitant travel costs and organising itineraries. It might be something small, not all too exotic, where nothing unexpected happens, but even the smallest holidays can make a world of difference.


Post 2020 professionals in any field have a lot of catching up to do after the utterly unpredictable fiscal year we all had last year, this means that there is less time to enjoy downtime, at least for now. But for many, all work and no play leads to a rather unfulfilled life. People want to travel, even if it doesn’t take you very far, but simply don’t have the time available right now to do it.

Local holidays completely remove the complications of time spent on travelling and organising a holiday, they let you unwind in much shorter bursts so that the realities of the world don’t mount while you’re taking time off.


When was the last time you ventured out to find hidden gems in your own town? Have you ever really done it? You might be tempted to say something like ‘The city of Joburg doesn’t have any, I know, I live here…’

But remember that there are people travelling here for that very reason, and they are finding those gems, because they do exist.

People who live by the coast spend the least time on the beaches, people who live in cities tend to stay away from them; you’re not going to find any hidden gems that way.

Being in ‘holiday mode’ tends to drive you to go out and explore what a destination has to offer, even if that destination is only an hour or so from where you live.


So, what are you waiting for? Go out there and make your own city the next big destination you set off to. Why not spend a few nights in our luxury guesthouse in Johannesburg? Visit the African Elephant Guest House website today to make a booking.

Is Johannesburg a good spot for holiday makers?


When you think of a luxury holiday, the sprawling city of Johannesburg is probably not the first thing to enter your mind as the ideal destination. City life is often the thing that holiday makers are looking to escape, after all.

But the figures show something different, people from all over the world have the City of Gold in their sites where their next destination is concerned. This might seem a little off for us modest city dwellers, but Joburg boasts no fewer than 4 million international visitors a year, whereas Cape Town tends to stick below the 2 million mark.

So, there must be something in our fair city worth visiting, right? Well, for those looking a little closer for their next destination, Johannesburg has a wealth to offer.


For those that have been out of the city for a long time, you’re missing out if you haven’t explored the more tasteful sides of the city centre.

Maboneng in particular comes to mind, a recently gentrified area of the city that has more to offer in its few small blocks than much of the rest of the district. Layered with multi-story markets, pubs, clubs, art galleries, and jazz lounges, Maboneng offers an experience for all types of tastes.

This magical part of the city even seems to change from a lively family entertainment area in the day to a vibrant and energetic nightlife scene when the sun sets.

Maboneng melts the extensive network of different cultures found throughout Johannesburg into one unforgettable and educational experience, even for the people who live here.


Maybe the city centre isn’t your cup of tea, perhaps you want to see some more natural, calming beauty, want to engage in other types of entertainment, or simply want to unwind and keep to yourself.

Johannesburg and its surrounding areas have plenty to offer in that regard.

We are home to a slew of luxury casinos like Gold Reef and Emperor’s Palace, a short drive out of the city will let you take in the natural beauty of areas like Magaliesburg, complete with eye-opening game drives and a bushveld experience.

From there, the ever-famous Sun City is not a far way off, restaurants of all types dot Johannesburg’s lines, along with shopping malls in any direction, and even theme parks.


A lot of travellers come to Johannesburg for business, and there is more than enough of it going around. Whether for short conferences, team-building activities, important meetings, or seminars, notable business people are constantly coming to and meeting in Johannesburg.

The electric business energy in the city makes it the ideal place to discuss, plan, and embark on new capitalist ventures, and almost every part of Johannesburg, from its city buildings to its elegant meet-up points, accommodate this.


So popular is golfing in Johannesburg that it deserves its own paragraph in this article. Johannesburg and its surrounding areas are home to some of the most beautiful, challenging, and exclusive golf courses in the country. Each and every area of interest in Johannesburg, whether it be North, East, South, or West, has its own set of unique, lush, and challenging courses to play on.


Johannesburg is home to a wide variety of different types of accommodation for every type of traveller. Moving around on a budget? There are countless quaint and comfortable inns, hotels, and guesthouses to stay at.

Looking for something from the upper crust? We have a massive assortment of various guest rooms available from thousands of elegant, luxury hotels and guesthouses all across the city.

These offer a diverse set of activities, levels of comfort and luxury, cultural experiences, nearby attractions, places to soak in great food and drink, and a wealth of other exciting experiences, all in one city.


If you would like to visit our fair city, and would like the perfect place to stay during your trip, why not check in at the African Elephant Guest House? Visit our website today for information on our offers.

Why you should choose a guesthouse for your vacation

Why you should choose a guesthouse for your vacation

When it comes to accommodation, no two travellers are quite the same. With so many different services and amenities on offer, choosing where to stay can be overwhelming. The different types of accommodation options often offer vastly different facilities.

Types of accommodation

For a more personal experience you may choose to avoid large chain hotels. These are some of the options available to you.

Boutique hotel

Boutique hotels are ideal for independent travellers, honeymooners, and businesspeople.

They are generally more affordable than chain hotels and the service can be more personalised. These establishments are a great base to explore the surrounding area from. There are no gyms, spas, or restaurants onsite.


Booking a self-catering space can be great if you have a family but might not be the right option if you just want to unwind.

You can spend evenings relaxing like you would while at home and you don’t need to change your routine if you have little kids. You have to still take care of entertainment, cooking, washing up, and housekeeping yourself. If you’re a social traveller, it might be tricky to make holiday friends as there is no communal restaurants and spaces to mingle.


Staying at a guesthouse during your vacation offers the best of all options. Rates are generally cheaper than a hotel, the service is personalised to each guest. The owners are often hands-on and knowledgeable about local activities.

You can expect homemade meals on the menu at a guesthouse, customised to specific dietary requirements you may have. Staying at a guesthouse also offers plenty of opportunities to mingle in communal living spaces and enough space to ensure privacy.

When you stay at African Elephant Guesthouse, you can expect the following amenities in each room:

  • Private entrance
  • Spa bath and separate shower
  • TV with selected DSTV
  • Fan
  • Heater
  • Electric blanket
  • Digital safe
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Coffee/Tea facilities
  • Mini Fridge

Additional services include:

  • On site laundry
  • Shuttle service
  • Home cooked dinner and lunch packs by arrangement

What fits your budget

A quick way to narrow down your search is by budget and location in proximity to restaurants, local sights, and shopping centres.

Self-catering may be the cheapest option, but there is no one on-hand to tell you about the local hidden gems you should explore during your visit. A guesthouse offers an affordable option with more benefits if you want to really relax during your stay.

Book your stay today

Experience the best of Germiston, stress-free accommodation, and an affordable, personalised break when you book your holiday at African Elephant Guesthouse.

Discover the wonderful symbolism of elephants

Discover the wonderful symbolism of elephants

African Elephant Guesthouse offers a luxurious experience for all guests. Our earthy elephant themed decor throughout the living space embodies the spirit of good luck, wisdom, and protection that elephants are symbolic of. Elephants are earthly animal and is believed to have a connection to ancient knowledge. It is believed that using elephant symbolism in one’s household will invite good luck and fortune in while keeping any negativity out.

Attracting good fortune

Images of an elephant with its trunk raised is thought to attract good fortune, whether worn or placed in your home. It is said that the elephant is showering its positive energy out of the trunk and into all surrounding beings and spaces.

Positive energy

Elephants with their trunks down are said to be accumulating positive energy and pushing through obstacles. They are particularly powerful symbols for those seeking wisdom or strength. When you focus on the elephant in meditation, it could help you to access your inner wisdom, power, and overcome obstacles.

Power and friendship

A figurine or image of an elephant standing on its rear legs signifies power and protection. Two elephants crossing their trunks symbolise bonding and friendship, while two elephants, one of them without tusks implies a healthy relationship between men and women.

Wisdom and loyalty

As gentle giants, elephant symbolism can represent sensitivity, wisdom, stability, loyalty, intelligence, peace, reliability, and determination.


Elephant symbolism includes a virtue. Unless their herd or young are threatened, elephants are considered calm and having patience.

Elephants in feng shui

Elephants are considered to act as protectors and placing elephant statues at the front door is considered to be lucky.

Placed in your study, elephant statues, paintings, or symbols is said to bring career growth, knowledge, and success. A picture of an elephant on your desk is said to enhance your leadership qualities and enhance your performance under pressure. Placing brass elephants in meeting rooms is said to bring peace and prosperity at the workplace.

Elephant dreams

Dreaming of an elephant could suggest that you need to be more patience or that you’ve been holding onto the past for too long.

Discover African Elephant Guesthouse

Book your holiday at African Elephant Guesthouse today and be re-energised by the spirit of the continent’s gentle giant.

Explore Germiston and Johannesburg

Explore Germiston and Johannesburg

African Elephant Guest House is an upmarket conveniently located in Lambton, Germiston. The location was carefully selected with the guest in mind so every visitor will have their needs met.

There is a world of wonder waiting for those who want to explore Germiston and surrounds, with something for everyone.

Aviation Museum of South Africa

The museum is based at Rand Airport in Germiston and houses a fascinating collection of aircraft like two Boeing 747s, ‘Lebombo’ which flew over Ellis Park at the 1995 Rugby World Cup and a rare Boeing 747SP. Other aircraft include a B737-200, Douglas DC-4 and DC-6, Lockheed Lodestar and a de Havilland Dove.

Discover the museum’s extensive collection of airline artefacts and memorabilia. The museum also boasts a fleet of operational classic propeller-driven aircraft that are used for safari charters to Southern Africa’s exotic tourist destinations.

Classique Aviation

Experience the adventure flight of a lifetime with Classique Aviation and explore Germiston from a different angle. They offer aviation enthusiasts a chance to take to the skies in a range of vintage and aerobatic aircraft in Johannesburg. While their operation hours are generally on Saturday and Sunday, midweek flights can be arranged. Bookings a week in advance are essential.

Rondebult Bird Sanctuary

The Rondebult Bird Sanctuary is located close to Germiston and spans 95 hectares. It comprises wetlands and grasslands that were established to salvage an old sewerage site. It has become a natural habitat of choice for a number of bird species. Step inside the eight separate and secure hides scattered around the dams to enjoy the avian antics around you. It is an essential stop on your Explore Germiston List.

Korsman Bird Sanctuary

Korsman Bird Sanctuary is a small 100-hectare location that is home to at least 250 bird, including the goliath heron and glossy ibis, black egret, and African spoonbill.

History shows that the San used Benoni as a hunting ground.

Rare birds include the white pelican, yellow billed stork, orange-throated longclaw, pygmy goose, African harrier-hawk, long-crested eagle, and lesser black-backed gull. Other animals include the water mongoose, slender mongoose, vlei rat, striped mouse, bats, 25 species of butterfly and 45 different spiders, one of which is endemic to the sanctuary.

Klipriviersberg hikes

Klipriviersberg Nature Reserve lies only 10 km from the city centre, close to the suburb of Mondeor. At over 700 hectares it features a diverse terrain and game including zebra, red hartebeest, and black wildebeest.

With 20 km worth of trails throughout the reserve there is a hike for everyone – from really easy, flat trails, to strenuous trails that will give you a good workout to experience clear views over the Johannesburg skyline.

They encourage self-guide exploration between sunrise and sunset. Guided walks are led on the second and fourth Sunday of each month, as well as the first and third Wednesday every month. You can also enjoy bird walks on the third Saturday morning of every month.

Make sure you’re wearing a good pair of boots and bring plenty of water.

ArtMatters Paint in the Park

Every weekend, ArtMatters in Johannesburg hosts a relaxing and fun paint in the park initiative. Set in the Klipriviersberg Nature Reserve, professional art instructor Humbu Nsenga will guide you through the creative process. If you want to tick of therapeutic and creative escape from the city on your Explore Germiston List, this is the activity for you. All painting material will be provided.

The Landing coffee shop

Next on the Explore Germiston List you will travel to Edenvale and stop for a cup of freshly brewed coffee at The Landing. Their baristas all boast top-notch training by the champion barista of South Africa. The Landing offers fast and free Wi-Fi and a delicious menu. There is seating inside or outside in the scenic garden or under covering.

Glendower Golf Club

For golfing enthusiasts, the Glendower Golf Club in Edenvale is one of the top golfing courses in Gauteng. Ryder Cup Captain Paul McGinley said it could be a real potential venue for a U.S. Open if it were located in America.

The golf club was established in 1939, and is a beautiful, challenging course. Play is open to the public, but it is highly recommended that you book your tee-off times ahead to avoid disappointment.

Gillooly’s Farm

Gillooly’s Farm covers only 44 hectares, but its walking trails are popular with locals and visitors alike for spotting a number of bird species while enjoying the fresh air and warm South African sun. Gillooly’s manmade lake is home to sharp tooth catfish, blue kurper and the common carp.

Let African Elephant Guesthouse prepare a basket for you to enjoy the picnic facilities scattered around the scenic dam.

Hunyani Snake City

The Hunyani Reptile Educational Breeding Centre provides an informative outing for young and old to learn about the conservation of South African reptiles. View eyeball cobras, mambas, king snakes, anacondas, rattle snakes, pythons, and crocodiles and enjoy the live snake show that takes place three times a day, Monday to Saturday.

Book your stay today

Book your holiday at African Elephant Guesthouse as your home base when exploring Germiston and its remarkable natural and cultural gems.

African Elephant Guest House