Christmas Weather: To braai or not to braai? Here's what's in store across SA

2017-12-21 16:35 - Gabi Zietsman
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SA Weather Service

Cape Town - The Christmas long weekend is looming, but will the weather fit in with your holiday plans?

December is normally the time of pleasant beach weather as the summer season starts ramping up, but these days the weather has been all kinds of cray.

Luckily the SA Weather Service (SAWS) has got your back with their Christmas weekend forecast, so you can plan for an inside Christmas roast or an outdoor festive braai.

SEE: The wackiest weather from 2017

As per previous years, most of SA will enjoy hot conditions, sunny skies and a pesky afternoon thunderstorm or two over the eastern parts of the country.

Western and Northern Cape will experience dry, windy weather, but still warm to hot conditions like the rest of the country, edging between the upper 20s and lower 30s.

There are a few exceptions that holidaymakers should be aware of though, according to SAWS.

SA Weather Service


The Lowveld region in Limpopo and Mpumalanga will be very hot and humid in the coming days, and people are advised to rather stay relaxed and keep pumping that H2O. Rain and thundershowers will pop up from time to time, with severe thunderstorms expected in the Lowveld and escarpment areas in both province. This may continue into Christmas Eve. The Day of Goodwill will give these provinces some relief with cooler cloudy conditions.

SEE: Malaria advisory for Limpopo, Mpumalanga and northern KZN


Beachgoers on the KZN coast will have tan-worthy sunny days with some wind and storms later in the day leading up to the 25th, when the weather will change to cooler, blustery south-westerly winds moving from south to north.

SEE: Last-Minute Escapes: Durban and surrounds holiday planner

Gauteng, Free State, North West

The northern and central provinces will be hot and sunny, perfect for lounging around the pool as the kids splash with their new toys, and little chance of rain. There may be a storm on the Monday, but only in the north-eastern Highveld area.

SEE: Last-Minute Escapes: Joburg and surrounds holiday planner

Western Cape

It'll be a bit cooler on the coast than the rest of the country, with potential light and short showers over the Cape Peninsula and Boland regions. The South Coast and south-western parts of the province will be cool with occasional showers on Christmas Day, but there will be less wind on the West Coast than the south. The best day for outside activities is the 26th, so maybe leave the braaiing for then.

SEE: Last-Minute Escapes: Cape Town and surrounds holiday planner

Eastern Cape

Mother Nature has decided to run through all the seasons in the Eastern Cape for the festive weekend. Christmas Eve weather is expected to be sunny, dry and warm, with some early morning drizzle along the East Coast and adjacent interior. There will be some isolated afternoon thunderstorms over the northern interior. But be warned if you have any activities planned for Christmas Day - a cold front will be moving through the coast towards KZN, bringing with it clouds, strong winds and short lived rain along the coast, as well as a small chance of isolated thundershowers over the interior. Luckily it should only last the day, and you can venture back onto the beach on the Day of Goodwill after a cloudy morning.

SEE: Last-Minute Port Elizabeth

This forecast is subject to change, so please stay up-to-date with SAWS on their Twitter feed.

Temperatures for Saturday, 23 December

Minimum temperatures on Saturday will be cool throughout the country with warm temperatures in the northern parts of Limpopo and Mpumalanga.

The coldest place in the country will be Sutherland in the Northern Cape, dropping to 9°C.

Maximum temperatures will be cool to mild on the coastlines of SA, with warm to hot temperatures in the northern interior.

The hottest place in SA will be Skukuza in Mpumalanga, reaching a sweltering 38°C.

Click here to see the specific forecast for your city over the next few days

Pretoria in Gauteng will reach a high of 32°C, while Johannesburg will see a warm 30°C. Bloemfontein in the Free State will reach a warm 31°C.

Along the coastal regions, Cape Town in the Western Cape will reach 23°C, while KZN's Durban will see a warm 28°C, and Port Elizabeth in Eastern Cape will drop to 21°C.

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