Explore the Cape of Good Times.

When a country town puts on its party shoes and invites everyone to join in, that may well be the best time – or an irresistible reason – to visit. Our round-up of must-visit festivals for 2024 covers six unique regions of the Cape, each with its own festive flavour and character, and a wide range of events, from the arty and cultured to food and music celebrations, to suit every kind of festino!

Where do you want to go?

The West Coast
The Winelands
The Overberg
The Garden Route
The Klein Karoo
The Great Karoo

Wolfie Familie Festival

Best Festivals Wolfie Familie

Where Citrusdal, Cederberg
When 8 – 10 March 2024
The lowdown Who says festivals are for grown-ups only? Pack your camping gear, lilos – and kids – and head to the banks of the Olifants River for three days of river activities, music, crafts, games and sports, sleeping under the stars and quality family time. From a secret sunrise disco and family yoga to fire shows, stargazing and bonfires, there’s plenty of fun. The programme includes pop-up theatre, a talent show, magic show, a young entrepreneurs’ market, dress-up parades, fun park and animal garden, plus a wellness spa.
Good to know You can BYO camping gear, book pre-pitched tents or stay in one of the glamping camps.
Cost From R950 (adult) and R750 (child) for BYO camping
Contact 076 017 4905, howl@wolfie.co.za
Venue Wolfkop Camping Villages, Citrusdal
Book Now

Darling Brew Winter Festival

Best Festivals Darling Brew Winter

Where Darling
When July 2024 (date TBC)
The lowdown Also known as the “Stoute” Stout Festival, it’s all about enjoying season-appropriate dark beers from local craft brewers (like Darling Brew’s Black Mist and award-winning Arrowhead Russian imperial stout) – along with rocking good music. There are food stalls and a cash bar for other drinks; your first, the festival beer, is on the house. Dust off your leather jacket and slip on those trusty tackies…
Good to know Darling Brew also hosts a mountain-biking event in May, a trail-running event in August, and a weekend-long Spring Market.
Contact 076 092 8313, shop@darlingbrew.co.za
Venue Darling Brew Taproom, 48 Caledon Street

Riebeek Valley Solo Studios

Best Festivals Riebeek Vallley Solo Studios

Where Riebeek-Kasteel + Riebeek-West
When August 2024 (dates TBC)
The lowdown These picturesque, neighbouring Swartland villages are home to more than their fair share of acclaimed artists, who open their studios to art lovers and aficionados once a year. The whole valley comes alive with exhibitions, guided art walks, cultural events, film screenings, talks, concerts, special dinners and wine tastings, and the delicious distractions of cosy coffee shops, boutiques and vintage stores. Booking is essential as space is limited.
Contact 074 209 6838, klaus@solostudios.co.za
Accommodation: 022 001 0096, riebeekvalley@swartlandtourism.co.za
Venue Various venues in town; festival hub at 34 Main Street.

Hopefield Fynbos Show

Best Festivals Hopefield Fynbos

Where Hopefield
When 29 August – 1 September 2024
The lowdown Every spring (since 1989), the whole town of Hopefield comes together to build, manage and run this wonderful fynbos showcase. Plant specimens from some 500 species are collected from the surrounding areas and informatively displayed in one indoor venue – in the style of London’s Chelsea Flower Show. Visitors can also enjoy local craft and food stalls, a braai and beer tent, tea garden, live music, sheep-shearing demos, tractor rides and more.
Contact 063 406 0421, info@hopefieldfynbos.co.za
Venue Hopefield Sports Club, Koperfontein Road (plus other venues)

Clanwilliam Wildflower Show

Best Festivals Clanwilliam Wildflowers
Cederberg Travel

Where Clanwilliam
When Late August to early September 2024 (dates TBC)
The lowdown Every year this Cederberg town and its surroundings burst into a riot of colour. At the show in the “Blommekerk” (flower church), over 400 species of freshly picked wildflowers, including a variety of rare proteas, are artfully arranged to showcase the amazing natural beauty of this region in one place. Guided walking tours are also offered in Ramskop Nature Reserve and at Clanwilliam Dam, plus a host of other activities – from traditional riel dancing and art exhibitions to a rooibos route and food stalls (think roosterkoek, pancakes and home bakes).
Contact 027 482 2024, cederberg@lando.co.za, bookings@clanwilliam.info
Venue DR Church, 41 Main Street, plus other venus

Blomme & Bubbles

Best Festivals Blomme And Bubbles

Where Paternoster
When 6 – 8 September 2024
The lowdown As if the spring flowers aren’t enough to lure you up the West Coast, Paternoster lays out the red carpet and adds bubbly to the mix. This weekend festival celebrates all things cap classique, with tasting stations at various venues offering SA wine legends such as L’Ormarins, Ken Forrester, Creation, Pierre Jourdan and more. With the whole village en fête, expect live music, flower crowns, markets, art exhibitions and special wine pairings at local restaurants.
Contact wines@paternosterwinelounge.co.za
Venue Paternoster Wine & Tasting Lounge, 54 St Augustine Road, plus other venues

Darling Wildflower Show

Best Festivals Darling Wildflower Show

Where Darling
When Third week of September 2024 (dates TBC)
The lowdown Before you head up the coast to view the spring flowers, stop in at this stunning indoor landscaped botanical exhibition that shows off the diversity of the region’s flora. Get up close and feast your eyes, plus learn their names. Then forage at the market for snacks, scones, local produce and indigenous plants, enjoy live music and check out the Classic Car Show. A hop-on, hop-off bus takes visitors to various must-visit venues in town for local wines, craft beer and other displays at the Wildflower Reserve and Duckitt Orchids.
Contact 068 151 5692, darlingwildflowers@gmail.com
Venue Darling Museum, corner Hill and Pastorie Streets, plus other venues

Proudly Porterville Art Weekend

Best Festivals Proudly Porterville

Where Porterville
When End of September, early October 2024 (dates TBC)
The lowdown With over 30 artists and 10 venues within walking distance of each other, this is a creative route worth exploring – featuring everything from woodwork and mosaics to ceramics, jewellery and paintings. Visit resident artists in their studios, join in workshops, attend demos and view exhibitions that pop up in every nook of this quaint, under-the-radar mountain town. Visitors can also look forward to a picnic concert under the stars, beer garden, food vendors and a community market.
Cost Free (except concert)
Contact 022 931 3732, events@bergriviertourism.co.za
Venue Cowshed, 35 Frank Street, plus other venues

Rocking the Daisies

Best Festivals Rocking The Daisies

Where Darling
When October 2024 (dates TBC)
The lowdown This legendary three-day event is one of the longest-running outdoor music festivals in South Africa – and it’s managed to last because it has morphed with the times and has a finger on the pulse of what’s hot. With four stages, multiple dance floors, and a line-up of local and international musical talent (solo artists, bands and DJs), there’s something to suit most tastes. The addition of art and interactive experiences, lifestyle pop-ups, food and drinks stalls, a beach zone next to a dam, and cool camping options create the ultimate festival vibe.
Good to know Tickets go on sale from around April, so keep an eye out. No under-18s.
Contact hello@rockingthedaisies.com
Venue Cloof Wine Estate, Mamre Road (R315)

Paternoster Beach Fest

Best Festivals Paternoster Beach Fest

Where Paternoster
When First weekend of December 2024
The lowdown This fishing village’s fantastic stretch of white sand is the perfect venue for an exciting showdown of beach sports – touch rugby, soccer, hockey, cricket and netball (for junior and senior teams), plus a “Fittest on the Beach” (CrossFit) challenge. There are also other less competitive coastal activities to enjoy, such as horse-riding, e-bike rides, beach buggy rides, boat trips and kayaking. Throw in a selection of cool food trucks, a beer garden and live music, arts and crafts stalls, and it’s a wonderful way to kick off summer.
Cost Free (entry fees for teams)
Contact 074 283 5474, sport@paternosterbeachfest.com
Venue Main Beach, Strandloper Street

Franschhoek Literary Festival

Best Festivals Franschhoek Literary Festival

Where Franschhoek
When 17 – 19 May 2024
The lowdown Authors (local and international), poets, literary figures, creatives, publishers and bookworms converge on this Winelands town for a weekend comprising over 80 thought-provoking events. From debates and discussions of current trends and the state of the nation, to book readings, writing workshops, music concerts, film screenings, gourmet food and fine wines, this is brain food of the most nutritious kind. With venues in close proximity, it’s a literary takeover of the town’s streets.
Good to know In the week leading up to the event, there’s a Reading Festival aimed at children, with storytelling, puppetry, word games, mascots and more.
Contact hello@flf.co.za
Venue Various venues in town

Nuy Valley Festival

Best Festivals Nuy Valley

Where Worcester
When May 2024 (dates TBC)
The lowdown This is an event for the whole family, centred around wholesome country food and the valley’s wine and olive harvest. Hop on board the “Nuy Valley Express” (tractors with wagons) that will take you through the vineyards and olive groves to all the festival venues on various estates. There are trail-running and mountain-bike races, live music, plenty of kids activities, market stalls and fun for the whole family. If you’ve never heard of the Nuy Valley, it’s a picturesque slice of the winelands between Worcester and Robertson.
Contact 084 245 3922, info@nuyvalleyfeast.co.za
Venues Various estates in the valley

Christmas in Winter

Best Festivals Christmas In Winter

Where Tulbagh
When 29 + 30 June 2024
The lowdown Experience a proper cold-season Christmas, with all the trimmings, twinkling lights and delicious festive fare (and possibly snow). Tulbagh’s historic Church Street will be lined with stalls and decorations, and farms in the valley will also give a warm welcome to visitors. Indulge in cheese, olive, chocolate and wine tastings, go for a panoramic tractor ride, party at the Winterland Blues festival at The Bike Forge, enjoy roaring log fires, and more.
Contact 023 230 1348, admin@tulbaghtourism.co.za
Venue Venues in and around town

Stellenbosch International Chamber Music Festival

Best Festivals Stellenbosch International Chamber Music Festival

Where Stellenbosch
When 5 – 14 July 2024
The lowdown This unique festival combines student coaching with performances by top international and local professionals. Expect 10 days of divine music, both familiar and new or rarely heard. Each day ends with a festival concert, showcasing works from Mozart to modern-day composers played by virtuoso soloists from across the world; the last three nights are full symphony concerts led by guest conductors. The public can also attend masterclasses, rehearsals, “In Conversation With” lectures and lunchtime recitals by leading lights of the classical music world.
Contact 021 808 2343, info@sicmf.co.za
Location Endler Hall, Stellenbosch University, Neethling Street

Franschhoek Bastille Festival

Best Festivals Franschhoek Bastille

Where Franschhoek
When Mid-July 2024
The lowdown Delicious food, fine wine, oodles of French flair and a whole lot of carnival fun await at this annual festival – a celebration of our very own “French corner” of the Cape, that’s been a highlight of the calendar since 1993. Visit the market stalls, enjoy the buskers, take part in crazy contests, play boules, taste the famous wines and delight in the local produce and scenery of this picturesque valley. Dress up in your best red, white and blue!
Contact 066 224 6360, info@franschhoek.org.za
Venue Along Huguenot Road (main street), at Town Hall and other venues

Annerkant Die Berg

Best Festivals Annerkant

Where Around Rawsonville
When July 2024 (dates TBC)
The lowdown Translating as “over the mountains”, this is the less-travelled (but no less wonderful) Breedekloof wine valley’s celebration of its produce and community. From 5-course dinners and themed feasts to a barrel-tasting safari and simple artisan bread, soup and wine (or chocolate soup with port), it’s all about deliciousness. You can also make your own red blend, join other creative workshops and MTB fun rides, and kids will love the carnivals at a couple of the estates.
Good to know Tickets must be booked for specific events – there is no general festival pass.
Contact 023 349  1791, info@breedekloof.com
Venues Various venues in the Breedekloof, along the R101 (off the N1)

Stellenbosch Wine Town

Best Festivals Stellenbosch Wine Tram

Where Stellenbosch
When 30 July – 4 August 2024
The lowdown This week-long shindig in SA’s wine heartland offers a variety of grape-related experiences, such as tutored tastings, terroir tastings, farm walks, blending workshops, winemakers’ dinners and music shows. It’s an opportunity to get to know the time-honoured wineries better and discover the new arrivals. Visitors can also look forward to restaurant specials. The official Stellenbosch Wine Festival (2 + 3 August), in the historic Town Hall, features more than 200 wines, with food catered by leading local chefs.
Contact 021 886 4310, info@wineroute.co.za
Venue Various venues in and around town

Taste the Tradition Festival

Best Festivals Taste The Tradition

Where Robertson Valley
When September 2024 (dates TBC)
The lowdown This magical part of the Boland is known for taking it slow and easy, and its festivals are wonderfully laid-back and hospitable. For a taste of springtime in the country, head to this “heritage-inspired” weekend for a round of bubbly brunches, braais, family-fun days, vineyard wine-tastings, creative wine pairings and winemakers’ dinners in underground cellars. The great outdoors also beckons with hiking, horse-riding, game drives and boat cruises on the Breede River.
Good to know Events are priced individually
Contact 076 162 9176, manager@robertsonwinevalley.co.za
Venue Various venues in Robertson, Bonnievale, Ashton and McGregor.

SA Cheese Festival

Best Festivals SA Cheese Festival

Where Stellenbosch
When September 2024 (dates TBC)
The lowdown Join thousands of fellow fromage fans for a weekend of eating, drinking, indulgence and general merriment to celebrate South Africa’s cheese-making industry. You can pair your favourites with wine, craft beer and gin; and enjoy foodie events, live demos and artisanal products at the marketplace and in Gourmet Lane. Music concerts and a carnival-style theme park will keep kids of all ages happy.
Contact info@cheesefestival.co.za
Venue Sandringham Estate, Sandringham Road (off R304)

Garden Town Stellenbosch

Best Festivals Garden Town

Where Stellenbosch
When Late October, early November 2024 (dates TBC)
The lowdown There’s something about spring in Stellenbosch… The vivid greens of new vine leaves, budding oak trees and everything in bloom. This 10-day festival celebrates the season by opening up some stunning private spaces for exploration, along with famous public and wine-estate gardens, and offers a bouquet of garden-related activities: workshops, guided walks, flower sculptures, a flower parade and botanical art exhibitions – all seasoned with Stellenbosch’s inimitable pairing of good food and fabulous wine.
Contact 021 886 4310, info@visitstellenbosch.org
Venue Various venues in town and the surrounds

Franschhoek Open Gardens

Best Festivals Franschhoek Open Gardens

Where Franschhoek
When Early November 2024 (dates TBC)
The lowdown What better way to immerse yourself in the glorious scenery and landscapes of Franschhoek? Take a journey and follow the treasure map to explore a dozen gloriously enchanting gardens, from charming village plots to expansive wine estates. Stop to enjoy tea and scones on the lawns of La Cotte, buy some plants to take home, sip on bubbly while strolling or do a wine-tasting or two, and browse products inspired by fynbos. All proceeds go to the Fleur de Lis Home for the Aged.
Contact 073 535 0007, fhkgardens@gmail.com
Venue Various venues in town and surrounds

Franschhoek Cap Classique & Champagne Festival

Best Festivals Franschhoek Cap Classique Festival

Where Franschhoek
When Early December 2024 (dates TBC)
The lowdown A suitably sparkling start to the festive season, this festival showcases the best of South African and French bubbles, sipped in glam garden-party surroundings. Tastings of cap classiques from more than 20 local producers, Champagnes by the glass or bottle and pop-up food stalls (from frites to chocolate and oysters) make for a day of indulgence.
Good to know No under-18s allowed.
Contact 066 224 6360, franschhoekevents@franschhoek.org.za
Venue Huguenot Monument, Lambrechts Road

Up the Creek

Best Festivals Up The Creek

Where Near Swellendam
When 8 – 11 February 2024
The lowdown Returning to the river for the first time in three years, this summer music festival has notched up three decades of top bands and the best vibe this side of the equator. It takes place on the banks of the Breede River (with dedicated lifeguards all weekend), with four stages and over 50 acts, so grab your inflatable croc or flamingo and float the weekend away, with cool tunes in the background. This year’s line-up includes Jeremy Loops, Good Luck, BCUC, Springbok Nude Girls, Congo Cowboys and Zebra.
Good to know This is a cashless event. No under-18s.
Cost R1 780 (full festival, includes BYO camping)
R250 (camping with your car); R5 850 (glamping)
Contact caitlin@redhotevents.co.za
Venue Up the Creek Camp, 13km after Felix Unite, Malgas/Infanta road off N2
Book Now

Classics For All Festival

Best Festivals Classics For All

Where Greyton and Genadendal
When 10 – 12 May 2024
The lowdown Three days of warm hospitality and wonderful music set these two charming Overberg villages alight each year in autumn. The festival brings together local and visiting artists, well-known and rising stars, in an accessible, no-frills format that welcomes all music lovers. A varied programme of 10 concerts will be presented in the superb acoustics of the historical Moravian churches in both towns. In between, there are plenty of cosy spots beside log fires to enjoy comfort food and wine.
Contact 028 254 9414, info@classicsforall.co.za
Venue Various venues in both towns

Elgin Railway Cool Wine Festival

Best Festivals Elgin Railway Festival

Where Elgin
When May 2024 (dates TBC)
The lowdown The Elgin Valley – home to Paul Cluver, South Hill, Oak Valley, Almenkerk and a dozen more – has a reputation for excellent cool-climate wines (from pinot noir and chardonnay to malbec and merlot). At this weekend festival, you can taste them all in one place: the super-atmospheric, steampunk-styled Art Deco Railway Market. Pick food to pair with your vino from a range of artisanal producers, and enjoy live entertainment.
Good to know Add a fantastic steam-train journey to this wonderful day out.
Contact 021 204 1158, info@elginrailwaymarket.co.za
Venue Elgin Railway Market, Oak Avenue

Hermanus FynArts

Best Festivals Hermanus FynArts

Where Hermanus
When 7 – 17 June 2024
The lowdown An exuberant celebration of creativity in all its forms – visual, musical, literary, culinary, performance – in a wonderful setting (and a fitting start to whale season). There’s a full programme bursting with delights, from theatre shows and live music in every genre to art exhibitions (including new sculptures added to the Cliff Path every year), talks, workshops and food and wine experiences. There are also tons of fun options for children.
Contact 060 957 5371, admin@hermanusfynarts.co.za
Venue Various venues in and around town

Wine, Whales & Music

Best Festivals Wine Whales And Music

Where De Hoop Nature Reserve, near Bredasdorp
When 21 – 23 June 2024
The lowdown In one of the prime land-based whale-watching spots along our coast, a special weekend gathering devoted to the finer things in life. The programme includes live music, wine and cheese tastings, gourmet dinners, guest speakers and gentle excursions in nature (a boat cruise, bird walk, picnic breakfast on the dunes, high tea under the trees), but the whales are undoubtedly the stars of the show.
Good to know Accommodation (in rondawels, cottages or suites) is included in the ticket, and includes food, beverages, music and most events. Optional activities are charged separately.
Contact 021 442 4522, res@dehoopcollection.co.za
Venue De Hoop Collection properties

Silver Mountain Music Festival

Best Festivals Silver Mountain Music

Where Grootvadersbosch Valley, near Swellendam
When June 2024 (dates TBC)
The lowdown This secret valley and enchanted forest is the perfect backdrop for a fantastic weekend music fest, initiated by popular conductor Richard Cock. Each year has a broad theme, and features some of SA’s best musicians. The festival also highlights the natural beauty of the region (a biodiversity hotspot), its rich heritage and country hospitality with wine and brandy tastings, forest walks, artisan and craft demos, author talks and farm experiences.
Contact 079 335 0269, info@silvermountainmusic.co.za
Venue Various venues in Grootvadersbosch, Swellendam and surroundings

Hermanus Whale Festival

Best Festivals Hermanus Whale Festival

Where Hermanus
When 26 – 29 September 2024
The lowdown It’s the high point of whale-watching season (celebrating 32 years this year), when the whole town comes alive in festival mode – from street parades to a live music stage at Gearings Point, arts and crafts tents, food and wine, a strongman competition and other sports events, plus loads of kids activities. At the heart of the festival (besides the whales playing their part in the waves offshore) is the Eco-Marine Tent, with a wide range of environmental exhibits including colourful, interactive ocean displays, films and talks by marine biologists and experts.
Cost Events priced individually
Contact 066 478 0081, festival@hermanuswhalefestival.co.za
Venue Various venues in and around town

Elgin Open Gardens

Best Festivals Elgin Open Gardens

Where Elgin-Grabouw
When Late October, early November 2024 (dates TBC)
The lowdown Each year, over two weekends in early summer, several properties – private farms, country houses and wine estates – open up their blooming beautiful gardens to visitors to enjoy. Each has its own special delights, design, water features and outdoor artworks. Some offer plant sales, activities such as croquet or picnic spots, as well as tea and cake or wine and snacks to enjoy in scenic surroundings. It’s probably one of the loveliest day drives you’re likely to take, discovering hidden gems down those country roads you usually whizz past on the N2. Proceeds go to local charities.
Contact 021 844 0154, info@elginopengardens.co.za
Venue Various venues in the Elgin Valley

Poetry in McGregor

Best Festivals Poetry In Mcgregor

Where McGregor
When November 2024 (dates TBC)
The lowdown This little village “on the road to nowhere” is a captivating and enchanting place, and an artists’ haven. The perfect setting, then, for a soul-stirring festival dedicated to the spoken word. There is a competition element, where poets are given a theme to ponder each year (previous themes include “the sound of water” and “touching the wild”). Enjoy poetry recitals in extraordinary settings, open mic sessions and book launches, as well as music, art exhibitions and workshops, and the delicious food and drink of the region.
Contact 023 625 1908, marketing@poetryinmcgregor.co.za
Venue Temenos and other venues around town

Knysna Speed Festival

Best Festivals Speed Festival

Where Knysna
When 2 – 5 May 2024
The lowdown One for the petrolheads… Enjoy thrilling races on a unique 1.9km hillside course for all levels of drivers and all kinds of cars – from supercars and sports cars to modified street cars and vintage beauties (and even a bakkie last year!). Classic Car Friday sees drivers and spectators dressing up in vintage fancy-dress. Keep an eye out for famous racing drivers and celebrities too. A Fan Fest at Knysna High School allows spectators to get up close to the vehicles, and offers other activities, food and drink. FYI: the course record is 34 seconds, set by Andre Bezuidenhout in 2022, going 200km/h!
Cost R160 per day; R400 (all days); free for children under 12 years
Pit access or Grandstand seating upgrade: R250 per day; R700 (all days)
VIP lounges: From R3 000 per day
Contact 044 382 7500, info@speedfestival.co.za
Venue Old Cape Road (near Simola Golf & Country Estate)
Book Now

Knysna Oyster Festival

Best Festivals Oyster Festival

Where Knysna
When 21 – 30 June 2024
The lowdown The Garden Route’s biggest gathering is turning 40 this year. It celebrates oysters, yes, but also much, much more – the extensive programme of events and activities includes a wine festival, forest marathon, mountain-biking, live music, comedy shows, golfing days, family-fun activities, art walkabouts, markets, whale-watching and more. Plus you can get your fill of imaginative oyster dishes at the town’s restaurants, and enter oyster-shucking and oyster-eating competitions.
Cost Varies; tickets for individual events
Contact 044 382 5510, info@knysnaoysterfestival.co.za
Venue Various venues around town

Garden Route International Film Festival

Best Festivals Garden Route Film Festival

Where Mossel Bay
When August 2024 (dates TBC)
The lowdown Featuring established and emerging filmmakers, in feature, documentary, short film, animation and new media, GRIFF is a platform of creativity and knowledge sharing. With productions from more than 30 countries, it offers an eye on the world like no other. Apart from the screenings (which include some drive-in style), there are seminars, workshops (last year you could sign up for stunt training), wine-tasting events, and the “green carpet” opening and closing nights.
Cost Varies; tickets for individual events
Contact info@gardenrouteinternationalfilmfestival.com
Venue Diaz Hotel, Beach Boulevard

Plett Arts Festival

Best Festivals Plett Arts Festival

Where Plettenberg Bay
When 20 – 29 September 2024
The lowdown Combining creativity and outdoor experiences, this boutique arts festival offers shows, music concerts, poetry nights and dance lessons, and a fab film festival with movie-inspired food menus by top chefs. The entire 10-day event opens with a twilight art exhibition meander, and other arty activities include sip-and-paint sessions, workshops, floral art and a land art walk through forest and fynbos. Add the lovely setting of Plett, during whale season, and this adds up to a special getaway.
Cost Varies; tickets for individual events
Contact 044 533 4065, info@pletttourism.com
Venue Various venues in town

Klein Karoo National Arts Festival

Best Festivals Klein Karoo Arts Festival

Where Oudtshoorn
When 23 – 31 March 2024
The lowdown This small town famously hosts South Africa’s pre-eminent Afrikaans arts festival, known as the KKNK, where you’ll discover how multifaceted the language and culture is (leave your stereotypes at home!). With more than 150 shows across all genres – theatre, dance, comedy, etc – one doesn’t need to speak Afrikaans to enjoy this fest. Many productions are multilingual, some don’t require an understanding of the language, and music is universally understood. There are also arts and crafts, workshops, markets and more to keep visitors entertained.
Cost Varies; tickets for individual events
Tickets on sale from the middle of January 2024.
Contact 044 203 8600, info@kknk.co.za
Venue Various venues around town

Eroica SA

Best Festivals Eroica

Where Montagu
When 12 – 14 April 2024
The lowdown A festival for lovers of old-school cycling (started in Italy and now held all over the world). Montagu has some of the most scenic routes, and the festival offers three options, with lavish food and drinks stops en route – Classic (68km), a new social-ride route on the Ouberg Pass; Hero (170km), for serious competitors; and enduro-style Nova (170km) for gravel bikers. The gathering starts with an exhibition of the most beautifully restored vintage bikes on Friday, and culminates in a Saturday night food market, with delicious food and drinks (you’ve earned it!), and an informal breakfast ride through town on Sunday.
Good to know No mountain bikes or modern carbon/aluminium bikes allowed; only pre-1999 steel bikes.
Cost R1 195 (60 euros)
Contact info@eroicasouthafrica.com
Venue De Bos, Brown Street (main hub)
Book Now

Calitzdorp Expressed

Best Festivals Calitzdorp Expressed

Where Calitzdorp
When 15 – 17 June 2024
The lowdown Experience the welcoming heart of the Klein Karoo at this weekend festival, where everyone in town joins in to host activities, entertain the crowds and serve great food and wine – especially Calitzdorp’s claim to fame, port-style wines (and the new fortified pomegranate wine). Expect a market and church bazaar, a trail run (including a route for families), choc-and-coffee pairings, live music, cosy fires, a car show and more.
Cost TBC. The passport includes free wine-tastings, hop-on hop-off farm transport, discounts on meals and a goodie bag.
Good to know Calitzdorp also holds a “Vetplantfees” (succulent plant festival) in September, and celebrates the apricot harvest in November with food, music, markets and more.
Contact calitzdorpexpressed@gmail.com
Venue 1 Van Riebeeck Street (festival office) and venues around town

Klein Karoo Klassique

Best Festivals Klein Karoo Klassique

Where Oudtshoorn
When 9 – 11 August 2024
The lowdown This classical music festival promises a wonderful winter’s weekend of beautiful music, delicious meals and good wines. The programme is diverse, from string quartets and pianists to choirs, opera and a little bit of jazz, featuring some of South Africa’s foremost musicians. Visitors can also enjoy history tours, a music-themed art exhibition, food-pairing sessions and book readings, as well as the other charms of this Klein Karoo town.
Contact 044 203 8600, 065 285 2337, hugo@kunste.org.za
Venue Civic Centre and other venues around town

Barrydale in Bloom

Best Festivals Barrydale In Bloom

Where Barrydale
When 18 – 24 October 2024
The lowdown For garden and flower lovers, this bloomtastic weekend in this quirky Klein Karoo town promises to be a memorable weekend getaway. The “open gardens safari” programme is packed with nature activities, from guided tours through the veld and domestic gardens (indigenous, succulent, vegetable, medicinal), to talks by plant and food gurus, a long table botanical-themed dinner, Mad Hatter’s G&Tea party, labyrinth walk, creative workshops, a market, scarecrow parade and much more.
Good to know All proceeds go to a local/community charity.
Contact 079 318 4289, barrydaleinbloom@gmail.com
Venue Various venues around town

Tankwa Classics

Best Festivals Tankwa Classics

Where Near Ceres
When 12 – 15 April 2024
The lowdown A celebration of classical music, in a place you’d least expect it, under the glittering star-filled skies in a millennia-old canyon amphitheatre. The three-day open-air concert programme offers a variety of instruments, singers and composers – from music of the movies to opera. Guests can also look forward to fabulous cuisine, a dam with a beach, bush walks, an outdoor art walk and glamping accommodation. This is “unplugged” in its best possible form. Note there is 200-person capacity.
Good to know The Easter Family Edition is a fun-filled “desert shindig” with activities and music for all ages (28 March – 1 April 2024).
Cost From R2 560 (BYO camping); R6 500 (glamping); R10 000 (cottage)
Contact 060 960 0859, hello@placeofdreams.co.za
Venue Place of Dreams, R356
Book Now

AfrikaBurn

Best Festivals Afrikaburn

Where Tankwa Karoo
When 29 April – 5 May 2024
The lowdown Like Nevada’s Burning Man festival, just in the Cape’s desert landscapes and with lots of unique local flavour. An amalgamation of art, music, performance, costume, themed camps, mutant vehicles (aka “mobile art”) and nightly conflagrations, all created by attendees – this year’s theme is “Creation”. Be prepared to go off-script, off-grid and off-beat at this gathering, where you need to be totally self-sufficient but also generously share in its barter economy. Note that the road to the site is notoriously bad, so be prepared.
Good to know Last-chance tickets (if there are any left) will be available on 27 February 2024.
Cost From R2 799
R299 per vehicle
Contact info@afrikaburn.com
Venue Quaggafontein Farm (Kwaggakop), off R355
Book Now

Journey to Jazz

Best Festivals Journey To Jazz

Where Prince Albert
When 1 – 5 May 2024
The lowdown Playing out along this charming Karoo dorp’s main street, expect world-class performances in the superb acoustics of the NG Church, the Showroom Theatre, in art galleries, restaurants and barns, plus local musicians, youth projects and buskers at markets, as well as riel dancing. Other experiences include sunrise yoga, guided nature hikes, open studios, foodie workshops and storytelling.
Contact 079 409 1605, 023 541 1066, admin@journeytojazz.co.za
Venue Various venues in town

What’s your favourite Cape festival?. We’d love to hear from you in the comments below.

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Disclaimer:

The Inside Guide has made every effort to ensure that the information in this post was correct at the time of publication. However, we do not assume any liability caused by errors, such as price, cost, time, and location.

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9 Responses to “The 30 Best Festivals in the Cape in 2024”

  1. Gerard Lombardo

    Excellent source of info’s! Will certainly use it very soon. Thank you.

    Reply
  2. ARMIN Diem

    I would like to subscribe

    Reply
  3. ARMIN Diem

    Such great information , keep up the awesome work

    Reply
  4. DEAN

    I AM A TOUR GUIDE IN THE WEST COAST BASED IN VREDENBURG IRION TOURS

    Reply
  5. Alida Mare

    Halo

    I would like to subscribe to the weekly newsletter
    Thank-you
    Alida

    Reply
  6. Gareth Agar

    How on earth has the Greyton Wine Festival not made this list 😲 best wine festival in the Cape!

    Reply
  7. Jason Hartman

    Very impressed by this festival guide and the info given on each festival.

    Thank you so much
    Hakkiesdraad Hartman

    Reply
  8. Gillian Mitchell

    And I forgot to add the name to my previous comment – mea culpa. The SU Woordfees.

    Reply
  9. Gillian Mitchell

    One of South Africa’s biggest performing and creative arts festivals ( 500+ events and 70,000+ visitors) that has for the last 25 years (Covid years obvioulsy excluded) taken place over 10 days in Stellenbosch does not make it onto this list?

    Reply