Cape Minstrel Carnival
While new year always arrives with a big bang in the Mother City, it’s the Cape Minstrel Carnival, known as Tweede Nuwe Jaar (second new year), that gives the celebration its local colour. The Cape Minstrel Carnival is Cape Town’s longest-running street party, tracing back to old slave traditions during the days of the Cape Colony.
Historically celebrated on January 2, the one day Cape slaves were given off every year, the carnival is still marked today, typically on January 1, by merrymaking, music and a parade: Performers from local communities, dressed as minstrels and waving parasols, dance and sing their way from Zonnebloem, formerly District Six, through the city centre.
Legend has it that the carnival was influenced by a group of African-American musicians who docked in Cape Town in the late 1800s and entertained sailors with their spontaneous performances. Many tunes you will hear played during the parade are more than 200 years old, although you’re sure to hear pop songs and local interpretations of modern music too. The song-and-dance troupes involved take the event very seriously – some start practicing up to six months in advance – and there are prizes for the most flamboyant performance, the best-dressed troupe, the best singer and the best band.
The Cape Minstrel Carnival, much like Mardi Gras, is a celebration of freedom – and a uniquely local event not to be missed.
Did you know?
The Cape Minstrel Carnival is Cape Town’s longest-running street party, dating back almost 200 years.
read more on our blog
"Tweede Nuwe Jaar" - it's a Cape Town thing (blog)
Celebs join the Minstrels teams (blog)
- Phone: +27 (0)21 761 5239
- Website: http://www.capetown-minstrels.co.za
- Physical Address: 5 Crete Road, Wetton, Lansdowne
Martin Melck House is one of the oldest colonial homes in South Africa named after its first owner. Its history is intimately entwined with that of Cape Town itself.
PRINS & PRINS DIAMONDS MUSEUM OF GEMS AND JEWELLERY
This unique museum project takes visitors on a journey from when diamonds first began to form three billion years ago and their 150 km journey to the surface, following the unique path of South African diamonds from their origin in extinct volcanoes to the deposits along our coastline. Learn about unique and rare gemstones, and see how jewellery has changed through thousands of years. The story about South Africa’s mineral wealth is told, not only for diamonds, but also for our Platinum and Gold deposits.
This cultural village aims to remind us of our origin and serves as the reservoir for African knowledge pertaining to nature and traditions, giving us an opportunity to celebrate who we are through music (wonderful sounds from live bands) or from its’ distinct fineness of cuisine, topped up with African (local) arts and crafts.
Hot summer sun, extra long days and warm nights, sun-kissed skin and time to spend with loved ones; summer in Cape Town is the ideal time to get outdoors and enjoy getting closer to the spectacular nature that is within minutes from the bustling city.
Diamonds were formed three billion years ago by molecular-changing heat of around 1 300 °C, deep within the Earth’s crust. If you didn’t know that, then you have not been to the Cape Town Diamond Museum.
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