It’s Heritage Day tomorrow – arguably South Africa’s most important public holiday. If you’re lucky, you’ll be going away for the long weekend, but if you’re staying home there’s a lot of child-friendly places to take the kids for a fun outing.
uShaka Marine World
The silver lining in your day 💙💙💙(📷: @mr_tread) #regram #seaworld
Great news is that uShaka Marine World has just reopened, so if you’re in Durbs this weekend, take the kids to the popular theme park where they can now enjoy seal and penquin viewings, a dolphin training session and walk through the awesome shipwreck aquarium. After they’ve been to Sea World, you can also take them to Dangerous Creatures to check out the reptiles and amphibians for an additional charge. They can then cool off at Wet n Wild to their heart’s delight. When they’ve had their fill (or they get hungry), you can take them to Wahooz, an outdoors restaurant on the promenade and treat them to a meal while soaking up the great sea views.
How much does it cost? Sea World: R100 per person, valid until 30 September. (Kids under 3 are free.) Tickets are available online or at the ticket office at the uShaka ticketing office.
When is it open? Monday to Sunday from 9am to 5pm
Where is it located? King Shaka Avenue, Durban
WIN! We’re giving 2 families (2 adults and 2 kids each) the chance to win tickets to uShaka Marine World, worth R1 440. To enter, simply fill in the form below. Entries close 1 October at midnight. T’s & C’s apply.
Get the kids out of the city and take a drive out to Imhoff farm in Kommetjie with its great views. This historical Cape farmstead offers countless things to do for kids, and you’ll enjoy browsing the farm as much as they do.
What’s great is that the new Higgeldy Piggeldy Farmyard is finally open again. This is one of Cape Town’s most popular, authentic farm experiences for children. Your children will love have the opportunity to feed and touch the friendly farm animals including the ponies, cows, sheep, goats, pigs, emus, bunnies and a variety of feathery friends!
Older kids can play a fun-filled game of pretend war at the paintball and laser tag venues, and they’ll love the Milkwood maze, too.
The Blue Water Café serves the most delicious, wholesome, organic food, while the farm stall specialises in free range items. There’s also a cheese maker and a sushi restaurant on the farm.
The farm is hosting Art on the Farm this Saturday and Sunday, so besides all the other attractions, you’ll be able to check out some great artwork too.
When is it open? Monday to Sunday from 9am-4pm
How much does it cost? Free, but a visit to the Higgeldy Piggeldy Farmyard costs R20 per person (Babies are free).
Where is it located: Kommetjie Road, Kommetjie, Cape Town
Bugz Play Park
☀️ ☀️ ☀️ We are open tomorrow from 10- 16h and Mr Worm train is ready to welcome you 🐛
At this big play park with carousels, mini trains, rowing boats, jungle gyms, water slides and a water play area, kids from age 3 are far too busy to ever get bored. Many of the attractions are free once you pay the entrance fee, but some – like the pony rides, pedal bikes and carousel – cost extra and need to be paid for with tokens. Of course, if it’s raining (which we hope it won’t be this weekend), the fun continues in the spacious indoor play area.
Unfortunately, the water slides and splash area will only open in October, but trust us there’s more than enough to keep the kids entertained for hours. You can also buy food and beverages at the kiosk in the park.
When is it open? Saturday, Sundays, public holidays, and public school holidays from 10am to 4pm ( the park is open, weather permitting.)
How much does it cost? Adults R50, kids 3-12 years R100 (VIP day pass which includes all rides, but not the petting farm, which is an additional R20), kids under 3: free (includes train, but not rides.)
Where is it located? 56 Tarentaal , Joostenbergvlakte, Kraaifontein, Cape Town
Enjoy a leisurely Heritage Day picnic at Boschendal’s Rhone Rose Garden surrounded by dramatic mountain views and lush greenery. Set up your picnic on the tables and chairs under the oak trees or take your own blankets to enjoy your picnic on the lawn. The kids will have a ball running about the lawn and on the playgrounds.
When is it open? The Heritage Day picnics are on 24 and 25 September.
How much does it cost? R600 for a basket for 2. To book, phone 021 870 4274 or email email@example.com.
Where is it located? R310 Pniel Road Groot, Franschhoek
Old Mac Daddy
Have a local-is-lekker braai at Old Mac Daddy this Heritage Day. There’ll also be a buffet, live music entertainment from local talent Jared Prior as well as fun Daddy’s Adventures activities for kids of all ages.
When is it open? The Heritage Day Braai is being held on 24 September between 12pm and 3pm
What does it cost? R160-R320
Where is it located? 112 Valley Road, Elgin, Grabouw, Western Cape
Happy World Rhino Day 🦏 #WorldRhinoDay
With over 54 hectares of green space to enjoy and over 300 animals to see, your kids will be in heaven when you take them to the Joburg Zoo. The best time to view the animals (and get great snaps of all the action) will be when they’re being fed: the chimps are usually fed at 10am, the gorillas at 2pm, the wild dogs and cheetahs at 12.15pm, but do check with the office when you get there to make sure you don’t miss out on the action.
Take your skottel braai and your picnic things along because we know that your kids won’t want to leave once they’re there and they’ll soon get hungry and thirsty with all the excitement and running around.
How much does it cost? Adults R110, Kids 3-12 years R65
When is it open? Monday to Sunday from 8:30am to 5:30pm
Where is it located? Jan Smuts Avenue, Parkview, Johannesburg
The Strawberry Farm
Just outside of Joburg at the foot of the Magaliesburg Mountains is a beautiful strawberry farm where you can take the kids for a picnic in the fields. There’s loads of space for them to run around and have fun while you sit back and take a welcome breather in the peaceful surroundings. Best of all is that if you don’t feel like packing your own picnic basket, you can pre-order one to collect when you arrive.
In picking season (usually from end September, but it depends on nature), you can pick and eat as many of their organically-grown strawberries as you like for a small fee. You can also enjoy a meal at their restaurant Forage & Feast or have a spa treatment while your partner looks after the kids.
When is it open? Saturdays and Sundays from 8am to 4pm
How much does it cost? If you’re planning to bring your kids for a picnic this long weekend, there’ll be no entrance fee, but in picking season, the entrance fee is R100 per person age 10 and over; R80 per child under age 10. Babies are free. This allows you to pick and eat as many strawberries as you like from the fields.
Where is it located? Tangaroa Farm on the R560 towards Magaliesberg and Hekpoort (Van Gaalen’s Cheese Farm is on the right).
Irene Dairy Farm
A picturesque gem that is nestled between Joburg and Pretoria, a visit to this old-style, storybook farm is a must for anyone with kids! With gorgeous gardens, a wooden jungle gym, tractors around every corner, and farm animals to see, you can relax under the trees while the little ones entertain themselves. There are also 2 restaurants on the farm and a deli so you can stock up on daily essentials like milk, bread and eggs before you go home.
Visit the Irene Farm and get a kiss from one of our cows!😁
No plans for Heritage Day? You’ll be thrilled to know they’re offering a Braai Day Menu, which will be available from 11am to 3pm. (This means you can put up your feet for a change!) There’s no need to book as there is lots of outdoor seating, but they work on a first come first serve basis.
How much does it cost? Free entrance
When does it open? Monday to Sunday from 7am to 5:30pm
Where is it located? Nellmapius Drive, Irene, Gauteng
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If you’re exploring the Kruger National Park any time soon, you’ll be pleased to know that the Li’l Gricers play area at the Kruger Station precinct is now officially open. This means the kids can have some fun while you enjoy the other facilities like the 3638 family restaurant, the Round in 9 bar, the En Route Grab ‘N Go Deli and the Departing Soon coffee and ice-cream cafe.
Joining #KrugerStation for lunch today? Be sure to bring the kids along for a bit of junior station fun in our…
The entire precinct is family friendly and provides a unique stop if you are exploring the Kruger National Park.
When is it open? Tuesday to Sunday from 7am to 9pm, Mondays 8am to 9pm
What does it cost? Free entrance
Where is it located? You’ll find the Kruger Station in the Skukuza rest camp. (Enter from the day visitor’s area through the entrance container or once in camp, turn right at the T-junction circle and follow the road until you reach the station).
Content editor and writer on Living & Loving, Sonya has over 25 years experience in the media industry. She edited Living & Loving magazine for six-and-a-half years and is the former editor of Longevity magazine. She’s won numerous media industry awards and is passionate about the health and wellbeing of moms and children.
Outside of work, she enjoys trying out recipes, reading crime mysteries and thrillers, practicing yoga, and exploring new destinations.
Learn more about Sonya Naudé.