Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden is hosting its annual Winter Wonders Special. Picture: Instagram
Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden is hosting its annual Winter Wonders Special. Picture: Instagram

Enjoy the winter wonders of Kirstenbosch with free entry for kids during the school holidays

By Vuyolwethu Fundam Time of article published Jul 8, 2021

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It's only the second week of the four-week July school holiday, and most parents are probably running out of ideas to keep children entertained at home.

With the country under level 4 lockdown, there's not much to explore outside, either.

Thankfully, for Capetonians, Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden is hosting its annual Winter Wonders Special, offering a full day of adventure for the entire family.

Here's what you can get up to:

Start your adventure from the Kirstenbosch Bookshop

On arrival, head over to the Visitor Centre (Gate 1). At the Kirstenbosch Gift Shop and Bookshop, ask the shop assistants for a Kirstenbosch Adventure Map. Families can create their own experiences by choosing from a variety of activities.

The map contains 50 illustrated features of Kirstenbosch. If a family ticks off 10 things on the adventure map, they can claim a R50 gift voucher from the Kirstenbosch Gift Shop, which remains valid until the end of this month.

Explore various eateries

If you're looking for something for the whole family, order from the Kirstenbosch Tea Room.

Their menu includes food for all tastes, traditional and adventurous to health-conscious, for the young and old.

For hearty meals and gourmet restaurant milkshakes, check out Moyo Kirstenbosch

Vida e Caffè is the perfect spot to pick up a smoothie, coffee, or toastie.

Under adjusted level 4 restrictions restaurants are only open for sale for off-site consumption of food as takeaways.

Shopping at Kirstenbosch

The Kirstenbosch Gift Shop is a celebration of all things botanical and showcases the work of local makers.

Ranges include bath and body products, home-ware, clothing and accessories.

Kirstenbosch Bookshop also has a selection of books for children, including puzzles and colouring books.

Take home the wonder of mother nature

For those who love gardening, at the Kirstenbosch Garden Centre (Gate 2), there are specialists in indigenous gardening and experienced staff available to offer advice.

You'll find a wide variety of rare and unusual succulents, as well as the easy-to-grow local species. Let the kids pick a succulent; succulents are low-maintenance and might be a perfect lockdown project.

The Fynbos Walk

The Fynbos Walk is at its most colourful around this time.

Fynbos is at its best during winter, the winter rains make foliage lush green and proteas are in full bloom. Picture: Supplied

From the Viewing Deck at Rycroft Gate (Gate 3), the Fynbos Walk takes you through the Restio Garden, Protea Garden, Fynbos Garden, Buchu Garden and Erica Garden. The path provides beautiful views of Table Mountain.

Get active and follow the Kirstenbosch 15-minute Forest Trail

The Forest Braille Trail starts and ends at the Fragrance Garden. The 15-minute circular walk takes you through the forest with benches and points of interest. It's suitable for small children, too.

To go along with your adventures, pick up a Garden Guide map at the Ticket Office.

The Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden is open every day, including public holidays, from 8am to 6pm in winter.

Admission costs to the Garden:

Free for children under the age of 18 during the Winter Wonders special.

Visitors who are 18 and older pay R80 and must provide their identity document, driving licence or proof of residency.

Senior citizens (with ID) get free entry on Tuesdays except on public holidays.

RSA Students (with student cards) pay R45.

The Winter Wonders special will run until July 18. Bookings can be made online via Webtickets. Alternatively, you can pay via card at the ticket office. For more information, contact Kirstenbosch on 021 799 8783.

Remember, safety first – during adjusted level 4, picnics and gathering in social groups are not allowed. The wearing of masks in public is mandatory.

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