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Get Ready for Holiday Fun: Exciting Activities for the Mid-Year Break!

The mid-year break is approaching, and families are eagerly planning for some winter holiday fun here in the southern hemisphere! Discover a range of exciting activities to keep both kids and adults entertained during the mid-year break, no matter where you are in the country.

3 Family Holiday Fun Ideas

We broke down some great ideas for the family crew to enjoy together – outdoors or indoors, and with creative activities.

1. Outdoor Adventures

Some outdoor activities suitable for the wintertime in South Africa include exploring the national parks, going on kid-friendly hikes, biking, beach trips, camping, or exploring local parks and nature reserves.

Tips on planning and preparing for outdoor adventures

To ensure a safe and enjoyable experience, remember to dress, prep, and pack appropriately for your time out. Always carry water, bring sunscreen, a jersey and a hat, and pack a little snack bag if the group gets hungry. Remember – always do your research on the venue for times and prices. And check the weather and local news before the big adventure just in case.

Three children bend over a brook in a nature trail, holding walking sticks while an adult female stands behind in the background with a hiking backpack.

2. Get Creative Indoors

We adore projects like arts and crafts and painting. Two holiday fun activities that families can get stuck into include:  

Paint by Number
This nostalgic painting activity trains little ones for precision and results in a lovely piece of art. A fun and inexpensive way to keep the little ones busy. 

Greeting Card Art Set
Instil the classic way of communication with card creation! These kits double as art sets and as sentimental hand-made greeting cards. Little artists from age four can dabble in this sand and glitter art set.

Have more of a competitive streak? Try out some strategy holiday fun games like: 

Draughts (Checkers) Game
The object of this classic strategy game is to capture and remove all of your opponent’s checkers from the game board. This game is for two players, ages four and up.

Battle Vessel Strategy Game
Fans of classic head-to-head strategy tabletop warship games can not only sink warships but also crash enemy aircraft. The game includes a portable battle box, so players can take it with them and dive into games on the go. Adults and children aged four and up can play together.

Chicken Go Game
A clucking hilarious target game to test your lucky shot with the whole family. Challenge yourself to break all blocks in one shoot. 

Wooden Blocks Game
Keep the family on edge with this traditional Jenga-style game. Simply stack the blocks, push out and restack a block. The first person to crash the tower loses the game.

And for the families that enjoy a little scientific fun, try out: 

Cra-Z-Slimy Creations
For all the slime enthusiasts out there, Cra-Z-Slimy Creations makes as many super slimes as you can. Each set contains everything needed to make your own slime creation.

Crystal Growing Kit
This Crystal Growing Kit contains everything required to grow your own crystals and perform crystal growth experiments. This is perfect for those ages eight and up who enjoy hands-on science learning.

Overhead view of children painting and colouring in pages of a flower and a bee.

3. Family-Friendly Holiday Fun Destinations

And now for some local family-friendly educational and interactive destinations!

Visit interactive museums

Cape Town Science Centre
Located in Cape Town, the Cape Town Science Centre is an interactive science centre that offers a range of hands-on exhibits, workshops, and shows for children of all ages. This colourful space challenges visitors with various scientific concepts in a fun and engaging way. Explore their upcoming events on their what’s on page.

South African National Museum of Natural History
Situated in Pretoria, the South African National Museum of Natural History showcases the natural and cultural heritage of South Africa. It features extensive exhibits on palaeontology, archaeology, geology, and more. The museum also houses the renowned Ditsong Dinosaur Museum – a favourite among kiddies and dinophiles alike. Check out all the upcoming events with their regularly updated feature days.

Apartheid Museum
While the subject matter may be sensitive, the museum presents it in a thought-provoking and educational manner. It is more suitable and more appropriate for older children and teens. The Apartheid Museum based in Ormonde, Johannesburg, provides a comprehensive overview of South Africa’s apartheid history. Visit from Wednesdays to Sundays and also on public holidays.

KwaZulu-Natal Museum
Located in Pietermaritzburg, the KwaZulu-Natal Museum focuses on the natural and cultural history of KwaZulu-Natal. It includes displays of dinosaurs, indigenous cultures, and local wildlife. And for the mini-stargazers, the museum also has a planetarium that offers shows. Visit during the week, as it is closed on the weekends.

Wide view of a bright blue aquarium tank with whale sharks, shark and various fish with dark silhouettes of people gazing into the tank.

Explore aquariums and wildlife sanctuaries

Two Oceans Aquarium
Situated in Cape Town, the Two Oceans Aquarium showcases the diverse marine life found in the Atlantic and Indian Oceans surrounding South Africa. Visitors can witness interactive feeding sessions, walk through underwater tunnels, and learn about marine conservation.

uShaka Marine World
Sitting on the Durban coast, uShaka Marine World is an aquarium-water park-entertainment centre delight. Families can explore marine exhibits, watch animal shows, enjoy water slides and pools, and snorkel with tropical fish.

Sci-Bono Discovery Centre
Located in Johannesburg, the Sci-Bono Discovery Centre is an interactive science and technology museum. It offers hands-on exhibits, workshops, and live demonstrations.

Monkeyland Primate Sanctuary
Near Plettenberg Bay, Monkeyland Primate Sanctuary is a sanctuary that provides a safe haven for rescued primates. Families can take guided tours and observe monkeys and lemurs in a natural forest setting while learning about their behaviour and conservation efforts.

Cango Caves
Out in Oudtshoorn, Western Cape, the Cango Caves are a remarkable underground cave system. Families can take guided tours to explore the caverns adorned with stalactites and stalagmites, gaining insights into geology and cave formation.

The Cradle of Humankind
Located near Johannesburg, the Cradle of Humankind is another UNESCO World Heritage Site. It houses several visitor centres, like the Maropeng Visitor Centre and the Sterkfontein Caves, where families can learn about human evolution through interactive exhibits and fossil displays.

Attend local winter festivals

Cape Town Winter Wonderland Festival
Held annually in Gordon’s Bay, Cape Town during June and July, the Winter Wonderland Festival offers ice skating, carnival rides, live entertainment, food stalls, and festive markets. Each event will require its own ticket, which you book in advance.

National Arts Festival
One of the largest multi-disciplinary arts festivals in Africa, the National Arts Festival takes place in Makhanda (previously Grahamstown) during June and July. It showcases over 500 shows of theatre, dance, music, visual arts, and more – some suitable for families and children.

Durban International Film Festival
Calling all cinephiles! The Durban International Film Festival features a selection of local and international films. It includes family-friendly options and offers workshops and discussions for film enthusiasts of all ages. You can check out all the films on show, from features to documentaries to short films and student projects.

Holiday Fun Makes for Happy Families

Whether you prefer outdoor escapades, indoor creativity, or exploring family-friendly attractions – you can enjoy a variety of holiday fun activities in South Africa. Shop our range of toys and fun activities to fuel your family’s next game night.

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