The beautiful terraced gardens and Edwardian neo-classic Italian Renaissance and Cape Dutch styled architecture of the majestic buildings are one of the recognised South African historical landmarks. Located in Pretoria the Union Buildings houses the Presidential offices and is the official seat of the national government. The buildings are not open to the public but the well manicured grounds, beautiful architecture and panoramic views over Pretoria make for a relaxing visit.
Built on a disused quarry on the hilltop, Meintjieskop, overlooking Pretoria city. The Union Buildings are a Heritage Site landmark, strong in history with the first democratically elected president Nelson Mandela and National Women’s Day celebrations being two of the most significant events marked here. The large 285 m sandstone building was designed in 1909 by Herbert Baker and took almost 3 years to build. It has lovely symmetry with the two wings representing the union of different governments of the time and the two national languages.
The stunning purple jacaranda tree line the neighbourhood and make for a visual feast from the Union Building grounds. The flowers are in full bloom during the months of October so make sure you visit then as well. It is a great spot to watch the city lights and have a picnic as a public spaces are open till 11:00 pm
Throughout the Union Buildings terraced gardens, 9000 seat amphitheatre and manicured grounds are various statues, historic monuments and memorials. One that is most impressive would be the 9 meter tall bronze statue of Nelson Mandela, former president of South Africa.
The Union Buildings are a symbol of freedom and unity, when South Africa was unified as one country. Here you will find a statue of Louis Botha, the first prime minister after the Union of South Africa.