Dlala Nje – Changing Minds & Changing Lives


Dlala Nje is a Johannesburg Inner City Adventure and Cultural Emporium at the base of Ponte City, in the heart of Hillbrow. Visit them as soon as you can to discover a whole new side of the inner city. 


Play Time In The City 

Dlala Nje is not just a social enterprise. It’s a platform for expression aimed at the next generation of Joburgers growing up in Hillbrow and neighbouring inner city suburbs. Two Hillbrow residents, Mike Luptak and Nickolaus Bauer, started this NGO. Situated at the base of Ponte City, Dlala Nje, a Zulu phrase meaning “just play” is a safe haven for inner city kids with no place to go. Luptak and Bauer run an entertainment and education centre here, boasting an array of games, workshops and arts-based activities.

However, one of the NGO’s main aims is to obliterate the stigma the inner city is often associated with. To most people, Hillbrow brings up thoughts of prostitution, drug peddling and violent crime. Dlala Nje hopes to reveal that in reality, this is very far from the truth.


The Ponte Parade

Ponte City itself has a 100% occupancy rate of which all residents are upper middle class. There are also more 2015 VW Polos parked in Ponte’s parking bays than there are on 4th Avenue in Parkhurst on a Saturday morning! Dlala Nje argues that these tenants would not choose to live in the inner city if it was as crime riddled as we all think it to be.

In order to win over the hearts and minds of people, Dlala Nje hosts an array of walking tours through the inner city. The most popular tour on the list is the Hillbrow walking tour which ends with a pub lunch at a local shebeen. Dlala Nje also often hosts limited specialty tours, so keep an eye on their social media page to see what the team is cooking up next. The funds made from these tours are invested into furthering the entertainment and education centre at Ponte – uplifting the neighbourhood little by little.

Dlala Nje
Photos by Bianca van Heerden

Challenge Yourself

One of Dlala Nje’s biggest draw cards for the inner city is the Ponte City challenge. This one-of-a-kind event takes place at the famous Ponte Towers. Challenging athletes, runners and the everyday man to run up its 900+ stairs! Join Dlala Nje for their second Ponte City Challenge for 2019, this December. Once you have battled the mammoth task of mounting these stairs, make your way back down to the 51st floor. This is Dlala Nje’s home, which boasts an incredible view of the city. Here, you can enjoy a light breakfast and awesome conversation about the inner city.

Are you fit enough to beat the record time of 05 minutes 18 seconds running up to the 54th floor of Ponte City? Lace up those running shoes because you’ve got some climbing to do.

When Is It?

Sunday, 1 December 2019 from 11:00 – 14:00.

Where Is It?

Dlala Nje, Ponte City, 1 Lily Ave, 2198 Johannesburg.

How Much Is It?

Tickets cost R150 per person. Book yours here.

Dlala Nje

For More Information

Visit the Dlala Nje website for more information about this event and other tours. You can also follow them on Twitter and Instagram for further updates.

Details: Dlala Nje – Shop 1, Ponte City Apartments, 1 Lily avenue, Berea, Johannesburg | +27 (67) 082 8168 |

Subscribe to our



Follow us


More Articles

Subscribe to Joburg!