Don't cancel holiday plans, pleads Southern Cape
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CEO of the Afrikaanse Handelsinstituut (AHi) Dr Willie Cilliers said despite the beaches closures in the Western Cape and Garden Route due to the new coronavirus restrictions, travellers can set their sights on other safe activities.
Earlier this week, President Cyril Rhamaphosa announced that beaches and public parks on the Garden Route and the Eastern Cape will be closed until January 3, 2021, as the attractions were considered high risk.
Cilliers said that holidaymakers should not cancel their holidays but to explore these areas as a family. He said the support will combat the downfall of even more businesses due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
"Although it is with a heavy heart that we received the news of stricter restrictions, the AHi understands that the Garden Route is now in a critical situation with state hospitals reaching full capacity.
“We now have to make a head start on the circumstances during the festive season so that people can still enjoy the offerings," said Cilliers.
He said now is the time to support the local shops and enjoy other activities that are often neglected in favour of beach visits.
“It’s a big setback, but with small adjustments to the holiday plans, it can still be a quality holiday. It is everyone’s responsibility to stand together before the country is hit even further by the pandemic," he added.
The Sarah Baartman District Municipality, which includes Graaff-Reinet, Grahamstown, Somerset East, Kirkwood, Jeffreys Bay, Kareedouw and Port Alfred) and the Garden Route District Municipality, which includes Knysna, George, Sedgefield, Plettenberg Bay, Mossel Bay and Oudtshoorn) are declared as hotspots.
“We are grateful for the various holidaymakers we already see here and would like to reassure everyone that every municipality in the Southern Cape district is offering their full co-operation to make it safe for all,” said Clliers.
The Garden Route District Municipality where beaches and public parks will be closed are:
Bitou: Plettenberg Bay, Keurboomstrand, Kurland, Kwanokuthula, Nature’s Valley, Krantshoek and Wittedrift.
George: George, Wildernis, Hoekwil, Heroldsbaai, Victoriabaai, Haarlem, Uniondale, Herold and Noll.
Hessequa: Albertinia, Stilbaai, Riversdal, Heidelberg, Slangrivier, Gourits and Witsand.
Kannaland: Calitzdorp, Zoar, Ladismith and Van Wyksdorp.
Knysna: Knysna, Sedgefield, Brenton, Buffelsbaai and Rheenendal.
Mosselbaai:Boggomsbaai, Brandwag, Buisplaas, Danabaai, Fraaiuitsig, Friemersheim, Groot-Brakrivier, Glentana, Hartenbos, Herbertsdale, Hersham, KwaNonqaba, Klein-Brakrivier, Outeniqua-strand, Reebok, Ruiterbos, Suiderkruis, Tergniet and Vleesbaai.
Oudtshoorn: De Rust, Dysselsdorp, Oudtshoorn and Volmoed.