Spring for Festivals!

Visit South Africa in the spring and you will have many festival events from which to choose. There are festivals for the arts, wine and beer, and music to name but a few.

First, there is the Cape Town International Jazz Festival. This has been THE major event happening on this continent for the past sixteen years. There will be five stages and over forty artists will perform during the two-day happening.

Next, is Lambert’s Bay Kreeffees held, naturally, in the town of Lambert’s Bay which is located on the west coast of the country. Kreeffees literally means ‘crayfish fest’ and there will be plenty of that to go around. There will be plenty of beer to wash down the crayfish and plenty of activities to work off the food, including a half-marathon and bungee jumping.

For something totally different, try attending the SciFest Africa. Now entering its 20th year, SciFest features hundreds of events and over 70 exhibitions. Samples of things you can see and experience are:

  • 50+ Workshops with titles such as “Prehistoric Bling” about jewelry in prehistoric times, or “Dissecting a Radio Telescope” where you will get to look into an actual radio telescope.
  • Daily lectures on diverse subjects from scientists and authoritative speakers from NASA, the Smithsonian, and Harvard among others.
  • Water World hosted by the South Africa Institute for Aquatic Biodiversity offers hands-on experiences through apprenticeships and field trips to the coast.

It’s all about the peaches at the Tondeldoos Country Festival held in Mpumalanga. Located about two hours drive from Johannesburg, it is the place to go if you like peaches. Most visitors goes to taste the peach mampoer, a fermented drink (think ‘fruity beer’.)

In celebration of the olive, try out the Prince Albert Town and Olive Festival held in April in Swartberg. There is something for everyone at this one. Games, crafts, exhibits, food, dancing, olive pit spitting contests, a cabaret…seriously, you cannot get bored.

Just in case that wasn’t enough olives, there is yet another festival devoted to the tasty fruit in May. Called the Riebeek Kasteel Olive Festival, it features the best olives in SA as well as wine, food, music and art.

If you want to just get out there and explore counter culture, there are options for that, too. AfrikaBurn is SA’s version of Burning Man. It is a forum, a space, a coming-together for individuals to participate in self-expression while guided by a set of agreed upon principles. There is also the Pink Loerie Mardi Gras, SA’s gay festival held for four days in Knysna.

Whatever sort of adventure or experience you are looking for, you can find it in South Africa. Those we’ve featured here are but a few of the many.