“Everybody seems to know what time it is, time for a braai – it’s time to have some fun!” so goes the lyrics of every South African’s favourite Heritage Day song, ‘Our Heritage’ by local musicians, Die Heuwels Fantasties, HHP, JR and the Soweto Gospel Choir.
And while they’re definitely not wrong (everybody does want to have a braai and have some fun on Heritage Day, no?), the day is about so much more than flipping your steaks and having a few cold ones with your friends.
Before 1995, the 24th of September was known as Shaka Day in commemoration of famed Zulu King, Shaka. While this day was mostly celebrated in KwaZulu-Natal, the day was soon overturned into a nationwide celebration of heritage, and finally recognised as an official public holiday by the South African government in 1995.
Which brings us to present day: Heritage Day is intended to celebrate all the diverse cultures and heritage in South Africa. With so many different cultures to pay homage to (we’re not called the Rainbow Nation for nothing) it’s easy to see why this is a particularly special holiday for South Africans.
Naturally, when South African want to celebrate, they certainly celebrate. Besides having a braai with your mates, there are several other events happening in and around Cape Town to celebrate this special day.
Heritage Day Party at Heritage Square – Cape Town
What better place to celebrate Heritage Day than at Cape Town’s much-loved Heritage Square. Home to HQ restaurant, this Sunday, 23 September, the entire Heritage Square will be turned into a dancefloor for one eppic party.
Featuring local acts such as Goodluck, Strange Loving and a string of DJs, as well as face painters and dancers, you can be sure to dance the night away in the heart of the Mother City.
- Tickets: R120
- Time: 4pm till late
- Date: Sunday, 23 September 2018
Evita’s Heritage Day – Darling
Who is a bigger advocate for the Rainbow Nation than the one and only Evita Bezuidenhout?!
If you’re up for a bit of a drive outside of Cape Town, then you can celebrate Heritage Day with a lovely lunch at Evita Bezuidenhout’s famous restaurant/theatre, Evita se Perron, in the gorgeous town of Darling on the West Coast.
The town is beautiful and you are sure to be entertained by dazzling Tannie Evita.
While you’re there, you can go see the beautiful wildflowers that are in bloom currently on the West Coast.
- Special braai menu on the day
- Date: Monday, 24 September 2018
Heritage Day Braai at Camps Bay Retreat – Camps Bay
The gorgeous Camps Bay Retreat boutique hotel in Camps Bay has long since been lauded for their delicious Spring/Summer braai evenings, and this year they’re kicking off their braai season (fittingly) on Heritage Day.
The evening includes a protein of your choice (beef, chicken or fish) barbecued to perfection on a real wood fired braai (no gas business here!) along with a selection of delicious sides and desserts.
Grab a sundowner and watch the sunset over the beautiful Camps Bay as the fire crackling beside you.
- Cost: R495 per person
- Date: Monday, 24 September 2018
- Time: 6pm – 10pm
In_Herit Festival – Cape Town and surrounds
The In_Herit festival is brought to you by the Iziko Museums and is a very special (and really cool) way to celebrate Heritage Day.
Between the 24th and the 30th of September, selected Iziko Museums in and around Cape Town will have free entrance for those looking to delve into the rich past of South Africa.
The week long celebration also includes special guided tours and walkabouts, exhibitions and a special Museum Night at the V&A Waterfront.
The stunning Planetarium in Gardens (which is the most advanced digital planetarium on the African continent) will offer visitors half-price entry for the week, so a stop at this special place is certainly recommended!
- Free entry, half price entry at selected museums
- 24 – 30 September 2018
- Cape Town and surrounds
So there you have it: amazing ways to celebrate Heritage Day this year. Even if you’re having a braai at home with your loved ones, we hope that you have a blast and celebrate your heritage and our nation’s rich history.
Here’s a little song to get you in the mood for celebration!