Five things that are great about a summer festive season

We cannot deny that we are quite heavily influenced by American culture and traditions. Hollywood has made it this way. This means that many people – even South Africans and others in the northern hemisphere – wish for white Christmases and cold winter festive seasons.

It’s the eggnog, Gluwhein, chestnuts roasting on an open fire that many of us crave. We’re here to tell you that a summer festive season and Christmas is actually better. Here’s why.

Longer days to be out and about

Winter days are very short. And for most of us, we spend far too much time indoors during the colder months, which isn’t always great for keeping us in a happy mood. A summer festive season means longer days to enjoy the sunshine and feel celebratory.

If you’re at the coast, this means more time during the day to enjoy the beach. You could even do a beach picnic until late into the evening and take in the sunset while you are there. Christmas dinner on the beach? Sounds good to us!

Refreshing summer cocktails

Who wants eggnog when you can have delicious summer cocktails? You can make your own at home or enjoy a seaside bar such as Tobago’s at Radisson Blu Hotel Waterfront in Cape Town. Should you opt for the former, Ben Ikanyi, barman at Tobago’s has shared a summer cocktail recipe that you can try at home. For this recipe, he was asked to use passion fruit. For Ikanyi, the recipe came easily. The below cocktail is something that can be served at Christmas lunch or at any other celebration over this period.

50ml Skyy Passion Fruit
15g Mint
50ml Pineapple Juice
25ml Passion Fruit Pulp
12.5ml Passion Fruit Cordial
25ml Coconut Syrup
Serve in a tall glass and garnish with twisted mint bush in a passion fruit shell

More time in nature

Christmas in the bush is something special. It’s not something that many people can say they have experi and it’s a unique experience that everyone should enjoy at least once in their lives. Being out and about in nature during a time in which spirits are high makes the bush escape extra special. If you’re in the Kruger National Park, you can expect magnificent sunsets and clear night skies lit up with stars.
If you’re in the area, be sure to pop into the Kruger Station. The entire area will be decorated to suit the season and it makes for the perfect place to stop off while on your game drives during this time. There will be Christmas-themed food and drinks on offer at restaurant 3638, while guests can also enjoy the delectables from the deli, craft coffee and other delights on offer.

Fresh summer foods

Summertime is seafood time! This can be seen in the delectable summer menu at the newly opened Sanctuary Mandela in Johannesburg. Imagine dishes such as smoked trout, Cape Malay style fish and line fish. Seafood is big at this time of year and no festive table is complete without it! If you’re not keen to make these yourself, you can always head to Sanctuary Mandela to try these dishes out for yourself.

The Cape Malay style fish is pan-fried kingklip with pawpaw curried salsa, pickled pumpkin seeds and shavings. The inspiration behind this dish is President Nelson Mandela’s love of pickled fish. It’s something that his treasured chef, Sis Xoliswa Ndoyiya, would prepare for him and his guests. And now she offers these wonderful flavours to guests at the Sanctuary Mandela restaurant.

You can travel almost anywhere in the country and enjoy good weather

South Africa is pretty well-known for having great weather for most of the year, with cities like Durban and Cape Town not experiencing very cold winters. Many locals choose coastal cities for their year-end destinations and take advantage of the public holidays to make the most of their break. Domestic travel is also on the rise according to They reported a 134% increase in flight searches ahead of big holidays such as Heritage Day this past September, with the most searched cities being Cape Town, Durban, Johannesburg, Port Elizabeth and East London.

South African Travels

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