There are a number of public holidays in South Africa. These days can be a great time to visit: locals flock to public spaces to enjoy the outdoors, attend special events, and generally celebrate Cape Town life. They do, however, require a little forward planning. Some establishments aren’t open on these days, and it’s a good idea to plan and book your activities in advance. Take note of these dates, along with a few suggestions for what to do on a public holiday in Cape Town.

Public holiday dates

Tuesday, 1 January: New Year’s Day

Thursday, 21 March: Human Rights Day

Friday, 19 April: Good Friday

Monday, 22 April: Family Day

Saturday, 27 April: Freedom Day

Wednesday, 1 May: Workers’ Day

Sunday, 16 June: Youth Day

Monday, 17 June: Public holiday (Youth Day Observed)

Friday, 9 August: National Women’s Day

Tuesday, 24 September: Heritage Day

Monday, 16 December: Day of Reconciliation

Wednesday, 25 December: Christmas Day

Thursday, 26 December: Day of Goodwill (previously known as Boxing Day)

What to do on a public holiday

Visit Groot Constantia

Groot Constantia is open seven days a week, and is only closed on Good Friday and Christmas Day. Every other day of the year, you can head to this stunning estate to enjoy the history, scenery, wining, and dining on offer here.

Groot Constantia


Take a day trip to Aquila Private Game Reserve and Spa

Aquila is open 365 days a year, and offers half or full day safaris, as well as horseback and quad bike safaris. It’s a great chance to catch the Big 5 up close!

Take a ride to the top of Table Mountain

The Table Mountain Aerial Cableway is open seven days a week, and the views from up there are unbeatable. Ride to the top and enjoy a hike, breakfast, lunch, or just admire the view.

Explore the V&A Waterfront

There is always something going on at the V&A Waterfront. Check out the art at Zeitz MOCAA, have lunch at one of the amazing restaurants, amble around the new Battery Park, or take your pick of hundreds of other activities. This is also the perfect place to take kids!

Waterfront summer

Hit the beaches

Cape Town is famous for it’s gorgeous, sandy beaches. Each one has a character of its own, and attracts a different crowd, so grab your bathing suit, sunblock, and beach gear, and take your pick!

Take a hike

Cape Town has some stunning hiking routes. If you like to stay active, a hike in the scenic mountains and forests around the city is the perfect way to enjoy a public holiday. The best part is it’s free, and there are no opening hours! Just take note of our hiking safety tips before you plan your route.

Planning a trip to Cape Town? Book flights, browse accommodation, and rent a car now to get the best rates. The Cape Town City Pass gives you access to over 70 of the top Cape Town attractions, tours, and things to see and do, including the popular hop on hop off City Sightseeing bus.

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