Need a break from the books? We have a few ideas on how to take the load off. Here is a list of student-friendly places to visit in your spare time.

As the current restrictions allow for more places to open, Witsies have the opportunity to enjoy the full university experience once more.

  1.JFF Rooftop Farm and the Open Slice Kitchen

Location: 70 Juta Street, Braamfontein

Media intern Sazi Bongwe at the JFF Rooftop Farm. Photo: Semakaleng Motsoere

The JFF rooftop is a plant-filled, quiet space amid the hustle and bustle of Braamfontein. Walking in, you will be welcomed by pot plants, big and small, filled with flowers, herbs and other plants, in every corner of the shop. The strong smell of coffee, mixed with the fresh smell of the plants, creates an environment that helps you relax.

Upstairs on the rooftop where most of the plants are grown, is a little sandwich place to grab a bite while shopping for plants or vegetables. The Open Slice Kitchen sells – as the name describes – open-slice sandwiches of different kinds. From their cheese and tomato, with a finish of salt and black pepper, to the vegan deluxe, this sandwich bar has something to accommodate everyone

2.Kalashnikovv Gallery

Location: 70 Juta Street (next door to JFF Rooftop Farm)

Media intern Sazi Bongwe standing next to one of the paintings exhibited at the Kalashnikovv Gallery. Photo: Semakaleng Motsoere

Still in the same location, an art gallery for lovers of the weird and wonderful.  This is a gallery that exhibits upcoming artists who are looking for a place to showcase their work.

There is a new exhibition every month, and the gallery does about two group shows – multiple artists exhibiting their work at the same time – a year.

The Kalashnikovv Gallery is open Monday to Friday from 10am till 4pm, and Saturdays from 10am until 3pm. Entrance is free.

3.The Market Theatre

Location: 56 Margaret Mcingana Street, Newtown

The entrance of The Market Theatre. Photo: Semakaleng Motsoere

For thespians looking to enjoy a good theatre performance, the Market Theatre is a short six-minute drive, or 19-minute walk from the Wits main campus. This is the place to go not just for theatre productions, but for music and dance performances, and to meet new people to enjoy a drink with at the bar in the foyer, after shows. There are shows during the week and at weekends. The walls of the Market Theatre complex are lined with pictures of prominent actors and performers that South Africans are familiar with. Ticket prices range from R90 on weekdays to R150 on weekends.

4.The Bioscope

Location: 44 Stanley, Braamfontein Werf

A vintage movie camera at The Bioscope. Photo: Semakaleng Motsoere

To enjoy a movie in a small, intimate setting and collect souvenirs, The Bioscope is the place to go. This independent cinema has only one room, catering for 47 people at a time, to make the experience even more exciting. After nine years of being located in the Maboneng Precinct, this cinema marked its 10th birthday by finding a new home at 44 Stanley in 2020.

This is the place to see local documentaries, comedy shows, live music and talks. Pizza and cocktails can be enjoyed during the shows. Ticket prices range from R100 to R350 for combo deals.

5.The Commune

Location: 14 Reserve Street, Braamfontein

A bookshelf filled with books at The Commune. Photo: Semakaleng Motsoere

The Commune is a place for book lovers. Filled with books on African politics by local authors, it is a great spot to read or journal with the soft, jazzy music playing in the background.  With the brown leather couches complimenting the yellow shelves bringing out the beautiful display of different genres, one can get as comfortable as one wants at The Commune.

The books on the shelves are free to use for everyone in the store, and there is tea, coffee and cake for sale. The bookstore hosts poetry sessions and has a DJ playing subtle music on Fridays to usher people into the weekend.

FEATURED IMAGE:  A picture of a set of Hulle, a show at The Market Theatre. Photo: Semakaleng Motsoere