The third term school holidays start this weekend. Most parents struggle to find affordable fun activities for the family. If you are counting your rands and cents, there are activities that one can plan without breaking the bank.
Here are some ideas for the family in three major cities that cost R100 or less:
Flag Animal Farm
Located in Ballito, Flag Animal Farm is home to over 1 000 animals, birds, reptiles, wolves and alpacas. Around 80% of these animals are rescued. It is one of the country’s best animal farms. There are daily shows, including reptile interactions, milking show and cartoon character appearances. Pack a picnic basket as there are many shady spots to enjoy nature and good food. Adults pay R52 and children under 18 gain free entry. Call 032 947 2018.
Paradise Valley is one of Durban's most visited spots. The nature reserve spans more than 100 hectares of coastal and remnant grassland, and is perfect for all ages. There is plenty to see and do, including hikes to the waterfall, picnic areas and walking trails. Adults pay R13 while children under 15 pay R10. Located at 10 Oxford Road. Call 031 702 3443.
Gather the family for a day of exploring Durban. The Rickshaw bus offer an immersive experience of the coastal city. It takes you through some of Durban's iconic spots, including the Emmanuel Cathedral, Victoria Street Market, Juma Musjid Mosque and City Hall. There is even a pitstop at Game City Shopping Mall for those who want to meet the locals and shop for a few items. Adults pay R100 while children under 17 pay R50. Call 031 322 4209.
Just an hour’s drive outside Cape Town lies Cape Point Nature Reserve. Hundreds of visitors from all over the world visit the reserve for its natural beauty. Cape Point offers many hiking trails and is home to the Flying Dutchman Funicular that offers some of the most impressive views. The funicular, named after the Flying Dutchman Ghost Ship, allows travellers to enjoy views 214m above sea level. The funicular leaves from the lower station every three minutes. Adults pay R76 and R39 for children until October 31. Call 021 780 9010 or visit www.capepoint.co.za/
Boulders Beach is famous for its African penguins who do not mind posing for selfies. Just ask Are You The One host Terrence J who snapped selfies with the birds during his trip to Cape Town this year.
Located just outside of Simon’s Town, the picturesque destination is also perfect if you want to enjoy a beach day. Adults pay R39 and children under 11 pay R20 until October 31. Call 021 786 2329.
The Company's Garden
Known as the oldest garden in Cape Town, The Company's Garden has beautiful spots for one to enjoy the majestic beauty of the Mother City. It also has a rose garden, Japanese garden, fish pond and aviary. It is close to places like the South African Museum, the Planetarium and the South African Art Gallery. It is the ideal picnic spot, too. Entry is free. Located at 19 Queen Victoria Street, Cape Town Central. Call 021 426 1357.
Soweto Towers is just one of the many attractions in Soweto. The cooling tower not only looks stunning but has become a hotspot for adventurists. Travellers can enjoy climbing (R48 when booked online) or travel via a lift up the towers to get a gorgeous view of Soweto and surrounding areas (R80 when booked online). Visit www.sowetotowers.co.za/
Maboneng was developed by Propertuity in 2009 to create a platform for businesses in the area. It started with a collection of abandoned warehouses where the Sunday food market and art were held. Maboneng has become a destination for international travellers who want to check out the hidden treasures of Gauteng. A perfect place for a family day trip, Maboneng offers a string of restaurants and tours to keep everyone occupied.
Be sure to check out Living Room, a rooftop cafe, that showcases some of the best views of Johannesberg and a little escape for those who want peace. The cafe offers a range of meals, some of which are under R100. Families can also enjoy a walking tour of the area. Call Living Room on 082 370 9284 or email [email protected]
The Lion and Safari Park is a 600-hectare wilderness reserve situated in the Hartebeespoort, Magaliesburg and Cradle of Humankind area. The park is home to the brown and white lion, cheetah, hyena, leopard, wild dogs, sable antelope, and kudu. Kids under 12 enjoy guided game drives and self-drives for free. Entry is free, but activities start from R40. Located at R512 Pelindaba Rd, Hartbeespoort in Broederstroom. Call 087 150 0100 or visit www.lionandsafaripark.com.