A Festive Season guide to Cape Town

2014-12-21 13:30
Post a comment 0

 

Cape Town -  Hotels and restaurants across the Cape Peninsula will be celebrating Christmas and New Year with a big spread of food in glorious settings from seaside and cityscape, to vineyards to gardens.  

“Travellers from the Northern Hemisphere may find their first African Christmas a little strange,” says Cape Town Tourism’s Executive Marketing Manager, Velma Corcoran. “There’s no snow, the days are long and warm and instead of huddling around fires and Christmas trees, Capetonians go into the outdoors to celebrate the season in the sunshine.”

A beautiful Cape Town morning captured by @runcapetown while in False Bay. #lovecapetown #capetown

A photo posted by lovecapetown (@lovecapetown) on


Christmas does however still come with crackers, paper hats and presents – along with roasted meats like turkey and gammon with all the trimmings – but it’s often served al fresco as children swim and play outside.

If you are self-catering, be sure to locate the braai (barbeque) before planning a Christmas feast on the coals. Popular choices for local Christmas day braais include turkey, gammon or chicken smoked and slow cooked in the Weber (kettle braai) or crayfish tails, dorado or snoek on an open fire. For some handy ideas on how to prepare the perfect braai, visit South African braai icon, Jan Braai or follow him on Twitter on @janbraai. 


A beautiful image of Table Mountain thanks to @Joanna2702! #lovecapetown #CapeTown #TableMountain

A photo posted by lovecapetown (@lovecapetown) on


Buy local magazines like Taste, Food & Home and Fresh Living, or visit www.food24.com to source some recipe ideas and to inspire the look of your summer Christmas table. 

The ultimate expression of an African Christmas is a wire and bead Christmas tree from an informal trader or craft market. Buying one (and the accessories) not only gives you a Christmas treasure to cherish but also sustains the livelihood of the crafter and his/her family.

Go one step further and buy all your Christmas presents from local traders. Find the ideal gifts at the V&A Waterfront’s new Watershed, browse Greenmarket Square, visit the Old Biscuit Mill in Woodstock and shop with gusto at the many Christmas markets that happen across Cape Town.

Christmas is all about children, so take them for a night-time drive through the Cape Town CBD to see the Christmas lights. Stop off at the Company’s Gardens Night Market, an annual event in the beautiful historic garden that sees 200 traders selling their wares from 16h00 – 23h00 between 20-30 December (excluding Christmas Day).

Or take the children to hear a very special African Christmas story at the V&A Waterfront on 24 December at 17h30 (till 19h00) as Gogo (grandmother in local language Xhosa) tells the story of the birth of baby Jesus with warmth and humour - as well as a selection of traditional hymns infused with African flavour. 

Another way to bring in Christmas Day is to attend midnight mass at any number of Cape Town Churches. The city centre’s St Georges Cathedral (5 Wale Street, Cape Town) is a popular place for worship and has an interesting history in the struggle against apartheid.

After all the fun of Christmas Day, Capetonians like to get out and about on Boxing Day – 26 December. Beaches and restaurants are packed so be sure to make your reservations well in advance, allowing yourself some extra time for beachside traffic.

Says the City of Cape Town’s Councillor Garreth Bloor; “Cape Town’s multi-faith community comes together at this time to celebrate goodwill, community and family. We would like to wish all our Christian visitors a joyful Christmas in Cape Town.”

For more ideas on what to do in Cape Town these holidays, visit Cape Town Tourism at any one of their Visitor Information Centres or mobile information units – or online at www.capetown.travel.

 

Great image by @craighowes! #lovecapetown

A photo posted by lovecapetown (@lovecapetown) on


CHRISTMAS AND NEW YEAR’S EVE 2014 IN CAPE TOWN

FESTIVE FEASTS

Whether it’s a traditional, outdoor or African Christmas you are after, Cape Town will leave you spoilt for choice with outdoor family picnics, cocktails with breath-taking views and gourmet cuisine at restaurants and top wine estates. Here are just a few ideas on where to feast for Christmas and where to party on New Year’s Eve:

A CAPE TOWN CHRISTMAS

Christmas Eve Dinner and New Year’s Eve Moroccan Buffet at Ricks Café America in the CBD: 

Christmas Eve Dinner, Christmas Day Lunch or New Year’s Eve Dinner at Azure, Twelve Apostles on the Atlantic Seaboard: 

Christmas Eve Dinner, Christmas Day Lunch or New Year's Eve Dinner at Savour Restaurant, African Pride 15 on Orange in the CBD: 

Christmas Eve Dinner, Christmas Day Lunch or New Year's Eve Dinner at Planet Restaurant, Belmond Mount Nelson in the City Centre: 

Christmas Day Lunch at Protea Hotel Fire and Ice! Cape Town: 

Christmas Eve Dinner or Christmas Day Lunch at The Meeting Room, Hilton Hotel, in the City Centre: 

Christmas Eve Dinner, Christmas Day Lunch or Dinner at The Atlantic Grill, Table Bay Hotel at the V&A Waterfront: 

Get your carb-free Christmas Day Lunch at The Banting Kitchen, Green Point: 

Christmas Eve Dinner, Christmas Day Lunch or New Year's Eve Dinner at La Mouette, Sea Point: 

Christmas Eve Dinner at The Backyard Grill in Sea Point: 

Christmas Eve Dinner, Christmas Day Lunch, Christmas Day Dinner or Boxing Day Brunch at Harvey’s at Winchester Mansions in Sea Point: http://www.winchester.co.za/christmas_new_year_hotel_cape_town.aspx

Christmas Day Lunch at Liberty’s Restaurant, DoubleTree By Hilton Cape Town, in Woodstock: http://doubletree3.hilton.com/

Christmas Eve Dinner, Christmas Day Lunch or New Year's Eve Dinner at The Conservatory at Cellars Hohenhort, Constantia: 

Christmas Day Lunch at CinCin, Colosseum in Century City: 

Christmas Eve Dinner, Christmas Day Lunch or New Year's Eve Dinner at Grande Provence in Franschhoek: 

Christmas Day Lunch at Eat @ Simonsvlei in Paarl: 


 CHRISTMAS AND NEW YEAR’S EVENTS

Christmas Carols at Steenberg

Date: 18 December 2014

Venue: Steenberg Estate, Steenberg

Website: www.steenbergfarm.com

 

Carols at Kirstenbosch

Date: 18 – 21 December 2014

Venue: Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden

Website: www.kirstenboschrotary.co.za

 

Carols by Candlelight

Date: 20 – 21 December 2014

Venue: V&A Waterfront Amphitheatre

Website: www.waterfront.co.za

 

Festive Choirs

Date: 22 and 23 December 2014

Venue: V&A Waterfront Amphitheatre

Website: www.waterfront.co.za

 

An African Christmas

Date: 24 December 2014

Venue: V&A Waterfront Amphitheatre

Website: www.waterfront.co.za/events/Kids/an-african-christmas

 

Festival of Chariots

Date: 26 December 2014

Venue: Surf Road, Sea Point Parade

Website: /www.facebook.com/FestivalOfChariotsCapeTown

 

New Year’s Day Pacha Ibiza Party at Grand Café & Beach

Date: 1 January 2014

Venue: Grand Café & Beach, Granger Bay

Website: www.grandafrica.com/

 

Cape Town Minstrel Carnival

Date: 2 January 2015

Venue: Cape Town City Centre

 

NEW YEAR’S EVE CELEBRATIONS

V&A Waterfront Fireworks

Date: 31 December 2014

Venue: V&A Waterfront Amphitheatre

Website: waterfront.co.za

 

Rezonance New Year’s Eve Party

Date: 31 December 2014 – 2 January 2015

Venue: Contermanskloof Farm, Durbanville

Website: rezonancefestival.com

 

Shimmy Beach Club’s New Year’s Eve

Date: 31 January 2014

Venue: Shimmy Beach Club, Granger Bay

Website: www.shimmybeachclub.com

 

Kirstenbosch New Year’s Eve Concert, featuring Mango Groove & Arno Carstens

Date: 31 December 2014

Venue: Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden

Website: www.sanbi.org

 

Richard’s Supper Stage & New Year’s Eve Gala Dinner Show

Date: 31 December 2014

Venue: Richard’s Supper Stage and Bistro, Sea Point

Website: www.richardscapetown.co.za/

 

New Year’s Eve Tropical Island Beach-themed Street Party at Protea Hotel Fire & Ice! Cape Town

Date: 31 December 2014

Venue: Protea Hotel Fire & Ice! Cape Town

Website: ProteaHotel Fire&Ice CapeTown

 

New Year’s Eve Party at Spier Wine Farm

Date: 31 December 2014

Venue: Spier Wine Estate, Stellenbosch

Website: www.spier.co.za/events/detail/celebrate-new-years-eve-at-spier

 

New Year’s Eve Party at HQ Restaurant

Date: 31 December 2014

Venue: HQ Restaurant, Bree Street, Cape Town

Website: www.hqrestaurant.co.za

 

Electric Vines Music Festival

Date: 30 & 31 December 2014

Venue: Arabella, Robertson

Website: www.electricvines.co.za/

 

Hot White New Year’s Eve Party at the All Star Theatre

Date: 31 December 2014

Venue: All Star Theatre, Cape Gate, Brackenfell

Website: www.allstartheatre.co.za/

 

New Year’s Eve Ball at Harvey's at Winchester Mansions

Date: 31 December 2014

Venue: Harvey's at Winchester Mansions, Sea Point

Website: www.winchester.co.za

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.