Celebrating Mega Events That Were Born In Cape Town

The COVID-19 pandemic shut down many of Cape Town’s favourite events, but now that the curve has been sufficiently flattened, we’re thrilled that some of them are back in town. In the past couple of weeks, the @Cape Town Cycle Tour rolled by and the @Cape Town Carnival strut its stuff in an exciting new multi-hub format spread out across the city centre.

This made us think about which other events were made in Cape Town, and which ones we hope to see in full swing during this year. The pandemic has forced some event organisers to be more innovative in their planning, switching up formats to accommodate COVID regulations, but still offering some great experiences.

Cape Town is a popular events destination for local and international event organisers and we’re delighted to see the streets and events venues coming alive again. Here are some events advertised that you can look forward to over the next few months.*

(*Note: the dates of events listed have been advertised at the time of writing. They may change, so it’s worth confirming with event organisers before committing the times to your diary.)

April

11-13: World Travel Market Africa

World Travel Market Africa delivers the leading global events for the travel industry. One of six shows in the WTM portfolio, our Africa show was launched in 2014 under the Africa Travel Week umbrella to bring the benefits and opportunities of our global industry expertise to travel professionals in this region. This year, the Made in Cape Town team have been invited to participate in WTM as part of the City of Cape Town pavilion. We’re excited to be taking our message of ‘local is lekker’ to international buyers in this all-important economic sector.

16-17:  Two Oceans Marathon

The Two Oceans Marathon takes place on 16 (the Half Marathon) and 17 April (the Ultramarathon). “The Two Oceans Marathon is the Africa’s biggest running event by economic impact, contributing R672 million annually to the Western Cape economy. It has earned a reputation as the world’s most beautiful marathon. The first race was held in 1970 and saw 26 runners line up to face the unknown challenge. Since then, the race has become a national institution and a firm favourite with local, upcountry, and international athletes.”

27 April – 1 May: Suidoosterfees

“The “Cape Doctor” always brings the best medicine, like a stacked festival programme for Suidoosterfees 2022, to be held from 27 April to 1 May at Artscape in Cape Town. This year festivalgoers can expect a whirlwind of excellence in theatre, music, dance and conversations.

May

13th-15th – Franschhoek Literary Festival

The Festival runs from Friday to Sunday during the third weekend in May, preceded by the Book Week for Young Readers.

The events take place in a variety of village venues within a few minutes’ walk of each other, creating a vibrant ambience in streets buzzing with book-lovers. The emphasis is on informal discussions and spirited debates between several writers with a chairperson, or one-on-one conversations and occasional talks. Starting at 10am and ending at 5pm, up to nine one-hour events run concurrently with half an hour between each (except where otherwise stated).

15: VWS Trail Challenge

After a forced 2 year break due to the COVID-19 Pandemic, the Original VWS Trail Challenge (now in its 16th running) is back. This race is designed as a trail run with stunning views over the city of Cape Town while enjoying invigorating trails on one of the 7 Wonders of Nature – Table Mountain. Take in the beauty of the lower slopes of Table Mountain and Devil’s Peak, the rambling tracks of Deer Park, the glorious single track contour above Tafelberg Road and experience the majesty of early morning Cape Town. The original VWS Trail Challenge offers runners a chance to do two routes: 20km or 10km (runners and walkers), with the race start and finish NEWLY located at Gardens Tech Rugby Club, Oranjezicht, Cape Town. Any donations are welcome and would be greatly appreciated.

June

6 June-3 July: The Jive Cape Town Funny Festival

South Africa’s oldest and foremost comedy festival showcasing the best local stand-up comedians together with top international variety acts. It’s Cape Town’s winter comedic talent and a great night out!

16-19: Decorex

Leading design and decor exhibition Decorex Africa has been completely reimagined with a new look, specially curated themes, new summits to support the design industry, and a hybrid digital offering. You are invited to come along and reimagine the world with them in Cape Town at the Cape Town International Convention Centre.

July

9-10 Franschhoek Bastille Festival

Come along and paint the town red and blue, with entertainment ranging from a French Film Festival at Le Quartier’s Screening Room, to boules, a chefs and waiters race, street soccer, a barrel-rolling contest and fly-fishing competitions. Guests can jive to the tunes of musicians while shopping up a storm at the market stalls and drinking in the wine, food and atmosphere. While a wide variety of children’s activities promise to keep your little ones amused for hours.

August

4-7 (to be confirmed): Hermanus Times Kalfiefees

Celebrate the arrival of the Southern Right Whales at the Hermanus Times Kalfiefees. This year’s Kalfiefees (“Calf Festival”) festival, takes place during August in Hermanus, incorporating national Women’s Day. A variety of productions and festivities are planned to suit all ages and tastes. Bring the family, watch the whales and have some fun.

September

28: Justin Bieber

For one night and one night only, at the DHL Stadium in Green Point.

October

30 Sept-2 October Hermanus Whale Festival

The annual Hermanus Whale Festival is a celebration of the return of the southern right whales to the coastal waters of Southern Africa. It is a tribute to the legacy left to the town by Wendy the Whale whose story is about man’s ability to live in harmony with nature as well as people’s ability to come together as communities valuing the environment. All events and activities during the whale festival are focused to create awareness on how to protect the whales and all our marine wildlife who share our coastal waters.  The festival takes place at the end of September which is the peak of whale activity in the region.

7-9: Rocking the Daisies

Rocking the Daisies is an eco-friendly music and lifestyle festival taking place at the Cloof Wine Estate in Darling (Western Cape). The festival will once again offer the best in live entertainment, lifestyle exhibitions and gourmet food. South Africa’s premier eco-friendly music and lifestyle festival, Rocking the Daisies raises the bar every year, incorporating innovative environmentally conscious products into the festival and spreading the message of ‘play hard, tread lightly’. Rocking the Daisies has made it its mission not only to educate others on greener lifestyles but also how to take it home and incorporate it into their own lives.

16: Cape Town Marathon

The Sanlam Cape Town Marathon is now an Abbott World Marathon Majors Candidate. Cape Town proudly a global city presents this marathon to running enthusiasts around the world. This will be Africa’s first World Marathon Major. The running festival weekend includes the Gold Label Status road marathon, and two trail runs – 46km and 22km.

November

23-27: Cape Town Fashion Festival

Cape Town Fashion Festival is a bi-annual celebration of fashion, arts, ideas and creative endeavour for everyone to enjoy. 

The CFF presents 5-days of world-class runways featuring Cape Town’s established and emerging designers, shopping events and experiences, styling and beauty workshops, industry seminars, networking events, exhibitions, tours, live entertainment and much more. 

Enjoy an evening of unrivalled style and entertainment, with VIP seats to the country’s most coveted fashion runways, matched with dining experiences that showcase the very best of Cape Town’s iconic food scene. 

25: The Waterboys Live in Cape Town

Fans of the band who showed us the whole of the moon can see them live on the iconic stage at Kirstenbosch National Botanical Gardens.

December

3: Festive Lights switch on

A unique Cape Town tradition that’s been brightening up summer in the city for over 50 years.

26: Boxing Day Blues Rock, Tulbagh

The annual family-friendly Boxing Day Blues Rock features top SA Rock and Blues Bands performing at the Bike Forge against the backdrop of the magnificent mountains in the Witzenberg Valley, Tulbagh. Gates open from 13h00.