South East of Johannesburg and its rich history as a gold mining area, the small town of Nigel like many other small towns at the time, sprung up around mining activities in the area.
While mining activity in the area has been stopped, the town which was named after the book “The Fortunes of Nigel”, keeps the local economy going with several other industries. This means that the centre of the town is all about the business but venturing out into the residential areas once again showcases the leafy suburbs Gauteng is so well-known for.
Residents here are usually employed by one of the industries in the area but Nigel is still in close proximity to Benoni and Springs which ensures that for anything you cannot find here, you will find in the neighbouring areas.
Despite its industrial roots, Nigel still has some outdoor activities such as the Marievale Bird Sanctuary, a beautiful escape from the hustle and bustle of city living, lying on a large wetland roughly 10 km outside of town. Over 65 waterbird species are found here and over 3 500 types of birds – to call it a prime birding spot does not quite do it justice.
For those looking for a day in nature, the close-by Suikerbosrand Nature Reserve is also a great way to shake some of the urban dust from yourself.