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December 13, 2012

Braai, braai, braai your boerie…

Mzoli's Place photo courtesy of Gabriel White

Ask any South African, and they will tell you that the braai – or barbecue – is a part of South African culture.So much so, in fact, that 24 September (Heritage Day) is now also popularly known as National Braai Day.

We’ve put together a list of the best braai spots in Cape Town. So grab your favourite type of braai meat, those tongs and that charcoal, and head on down to one of them for an afternoon of relaxation and good eating.

Mzoli’s Place in Gugulethu is the epitome of a great township vibe. The popular day and night spot, which first opened its doors in 2003 as a butchery, has grown to include entertainment and music and has become more than just a shisa nyama (a Zulu phrase meaning “burn the meat” that refers to an informal braai place, often close to a butchery). Frequented by both locals and tourists, Mzoli’s is definitely the place to go for expertly braaied meat and good company.
Where: Gugulethu Township, Cape Town
Contact: +27(0)21 638 1355 or visit their Facebook page

One of the best outdoor braai areas is the Tokai forest. Towering pine trees offer shade, a natural backdrop and that wonderful pine aroma. The forest is a favourite for Capetonians who want to unwind before the start of another week.
Where: Tokai Road, Cape Town
Fees: R5 per child, R10 per adult, R5 per car
Contact: +27 (0)21 780 9002, or visit www.tmnp.co.za

Silvermine Nature Reserve forms a part of the Table Mountain National Park. With bike trails, hiking and birdwatching, as well as picnic and braai facilities, it is the ideal braai spot for nature-loving families in Cape Town.
Where: Ou Kaapseweg, Cape Town
Fees: R10 per child, R20 per adult
Contact: +27 (0)21 780 9002 or visit http://www.sanparks.org/parks/table_mountain/

The combination of forest scents and that of marinated chops on the braai are bound to get anyone’s mouth watering and tummy rumbling. Forests are the perfect braai spots, and the Newlands Forest is definitely no exception.
Where: entrance is along the M3 freeway, near the University of Cape Town
Fees: R30 for up to 6 people, R10 per person thereafter, and R10 for secure parking.
Contact: +27 (0)21 762 9180/1/2

A favourite year-round braai spot is the Wynberg Park. The several braai and picnic spots and a fully equipped kiddies’ play area make it the ideal place for a big family braai and get-together.
Where: Cnr Klaassens and Trovato Link Roads, Wynberg
Fees: Entrance is free
Contact:+27 (0)21 761 1534 or +27 (0)21 686 8930

Cape Point photo courtesy of FlowComms

The perfect mix of sunshine, sea and relaxation can be experienced at Buffels Bay and Bordjiesdrif, situated in the Cape Point National Park Reserve. Boasting beautiful beaches, tidal pools safe for swimming and grassy braai and picnic spots, then this is the spot if you like a great view while you enjoy your meal. Visitors are warned about the resident Chacma baboons, that are easily attracted by food.
Where: Cape Point National Park reserve
Fee: R55 per adult
Contact:+27 (0)21 780 9207

Situated between Clifton’s Fourth Beach and Glen Beach, Maiden's Cove offers beautiful views of Camps Bay, Table Mountain and the 12 Apostles mountain range. Braai and picnic facilities are available, and you can also catch a tan on the boulders around the cove.
Where: Between Clifton Beach and Glen Beach
Fees: Free
Contact: None

In the summer months Cape Town is hot and dry, and strong wind – especially the notorious south-easter – is common. Visitors to these place are advised to exercise caution when lighting braai fires, particularly in nature areas, as devastating veld fires are easily sparked.

Maiden's Cove Photo courtesy of DanieVDM

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