Vilakazi Street, Soweto, just outside the Mandela Family Restaurant, which is across the road from Nelson Mandela’s old house at Number 8115. The humble red-brick abode is now a magnet for visitors from all around the world, and the hub of a tourism ecosystem which includes street markets, restaurants, pubs, spaza shops, car-wash bays, freelance guides and photographers, and a young guy who walked up to us and rapped a “Welcome to Soweto” poem in a baritone voice, slapping his fist against his chest to provide the backbeat. You see a lot of bikers riding up and down this street too, both the mountain-bike variety – cycle tours are a popular way of seeing Soweto – and the big engined variety, complete with flying tassels and the loud revs of hot metallic freedom.


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