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March Events in Cape Town & Surrounds
Get into the party spirit and celebrate the last rays of the summer sun at the biggest annual events, festivals and fairs the Mother City has to offer
Summer may be starting to simmer down, but based on March’s smoking hot list of big annual events in Cape Town, you wouldn’t be the wiser.
From weekend-long music festivals and fine wining and dining to the city’s biggest sporting events, including naked (yes, you read correctly!) bikers cycling the streets, there’s a barrage of high-profile calendar highlights to look forward to!
So, whether you’re as mad as the March hare about important dates or just searching for unforgettable things to do, look no further: we have all there is to see, do and experience in Cape Town during March.
2017 MARCH EVENTS IN CAPE TOWN & BEYOND
THE GALILEO OPEN AIR CINEMA (OCT 2016 – APR 2017)
If the idea of cuddling up under the stars whilst watching a movie, munching popcorn and intermittently gazing at gorgeous surrounds appeals, then best you book to watch your favourite movie with the Galileo Open Air Cinema. Bringing the best of the outdoor movie experience to the Mother City, the company brings regular screenings from Tuesday to Friday, with intermittent weekend screenings. Every week cinephiles can grab some popcorn (or other tasty gourmet treats from the exhibiting vendors), settle down on the lush lawns at Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens, the V&A Waterfront, Hillcrest Quarry and various venues in Cape Town and the Cape Winelands and see firm favourites, cult classics and many others.
- The Galileo Open Air Cinema at Hillcrest Quarry (Tuesday)
- The Galileo Open Air Cinema at Kirstenbosch (Wednesday)
- The Galileo Open Air Cinema at the V&A Waterfront (Thursday)
- The Galileo Open Air Cinema in Cape Town and the Cape Winelands (Friday & Saturday)
COST: Tickets are available via Webtickets.co.za and costs vary according to the package selected; concessions do apply. Click through to the event for more information on the line-up and costs.
HORSE RACES AT THE KENILWORTH RACE COURSE (OCT 2016 – MAR 2017)
Much like strawberries, watermelon and beach days at Clifton, horse racing in Cape Town is synonymous with the summer season, and what better way to celebrate than with a day of fun in the sun at the track. Kenilworth Racecourse, one of only two racecourses in Cape Town, is home to some of the Western Cape’s (and South Africa’s) most prestigious equestrian events, and believe it or not, the horse racing happenings also make great afternoons of entertainment for the entire family. We’ve got the lowdown on what to do and where to be seen at the races this summer in Cape Town.
COST: Entry fees to the events vary. Click through to the events for more information.
HOPE@PAULCLUVER SUMMER FESTIVAL (NOV 2016 – MAR 2017)
Support the Thembalitsha Foundation and enjoy top tunes, theatre, comedy and cinema at the Hope@PaulCluver Summer Festival in the Elgin Valley wine estate’s magical forest amphitheatre from November 2016 to March 2017. This season’s line-up will no doubt keep patrons enthralled and is set to feature first-rate musical acts, including Freshlyground, Elvis Blue and loads more. Bring along a picnic, some cushions and blankets and make yourself comfortable for an outdoor experience like no other. All profits from the tickets sales will be donated to the Thembalitsha Foundation, a non-profit organisation that uplifts impoverished communities in the area.
COST: Tickets are available via Computicket.com and Computicket outlets, and costs range from R100p/p to R300p/p. Click through to the article for more information.
KIRSTENBOSCH SUMMER SUNSET CONCERTS (NOV 2016 – APR 2017)
The Kirstenbosch hills liven up with the sound of music every Sunday from November 2016 to April 2017 for the annual summer sunset concerts. Each year, hordes of music lovers pack picnic baskets and blankets for the chilled out live music sessions on the historic botanical garden’s sprawling greens. This year, the exciting bill includes some seriously big names and lekker local acts such as Matthew Mole, Jimmy Nevis, Grassy Spark, Jeremy Loops, Mi Casa, Al Bairre and some awesome international acts too! Additionally, some concerts will have childcare facilities, so moms and pops can rest assured that their kiddies are in good hands.
COST: Tickets are available via Webtickets.co.za and costs vary according to the performer; concessions do apply. Click through to the event for more information on the line-up and costs.
LOVE AND LIGHT TRANCE PARTY IN PAARL (4 MAR)
Sometimes all you need is one great day of hitting slick groovies and thunderous beats. Thus, the 12-hour Love and Light trance party in Paarl is the perfect occasion to get a dose of summertime stomping fun. Sounding off at the Nelson’s Creek Wine Estate on Saturday, 4 March 2017, this mini trance fiesta makes for a great day out in the Cape Winelands without revellers having to worry about dragging along gear and camping in the sweltering heat. The one-day stomp-fest will also have food and drink stalls to keep the energy going.
COST: Tickets for the Love and Light trance party cost R300p/p and are available online. Click through to the event for more information.
PAARL OMMIBERG ‘ROUND THE ROCK’ FESTIVAL (4 MAR)
The Paarl OmmiBerg ‘Round the Rock’ Festival invites wine and food lovers to come celebrate the harvest season on Saturday, 4 March 2017. The day will be jam-packed with wine tastings that feature the region’s 2017 young wines before they’ve been filtered (an exclusive treat as cellars in Paarl are usually closed during this time). Festival-goers can cruise from one venue to another and not only sample these fledgling vinos but also take in a myriad of grape-themed activities, live entertainment, the vibey atmosphere and more. The decentralised food and wine fiesta also offers a wide range of culinary delights (each farm will have a different offering) as well as exciting things to do for little ones and teens.
COST: Tickets are available online via Webtickets.co.za and cost R120p/p; a limited number of tickets will also be available at participating estates on the day, and these cost R150p/p. Children under the age of 18 enter for free. Click through to the event for more information on pre-booked events and the full programme.
VEUVE CLICQUOT MASTERS POLO TOURNAMENT (4 MAR)
The sexy and sophisticated Veuve Clicquot Masters Polo tournament gallops onto Val de Vie Estate in the Cape Winelands on Saturday, 4 March 2017 for a glitzy afternoon of fashion and French Champagne (and a bit of sport too). Just like its cousin events, the Sun Met and the L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate, the daytime soiree is a haute couture affair that’s more concerned about who you’re wearing than who you’re cheering for. So, be sure to turn up in your chic and glamorous best. The Veuve Clicquot Masters Polo is one of only a few international polo tournaments sponsored by the premier French champagne house, and it’s the only one of its kind on the African continent. As such, guests can expect nothing but exclusivity and extravagance at this glam affair.
COST: Tickets are available via Computicket.com and at Computicket outlets. Garden access costs R980p/p and VVIP tickets cost R4000p/p.
EIKENDAL WEINTAUFE HARVEST CELEBRATION (5 MARCH)
Enjoy a grape-stomping good time in Stellenbosch at the 2017 Eikendal Weintaufe Harvest Celebration on Sunday, 5 March 2017. This annual family-friendly Cape Winelands fiesta invites visitors to witness the decades-old tradition of the baptism of the farm’s flagship Chardonnay and to taste the vintage straight from the barrel. What’s more, the wine estate has a slew of family-friendly activities on offer throughout the day, including grape stomping, tractor rides, cheetah viewing, vineyard walks and much more.
COST: Tickets can be booked or bought at the gate on the day for only R80p/p, and kids under 18 enter for free. The price includes a glass for wine tasting as well as a free sample of the 2017 Chardonnay.
WORLD NAKED BIKE RIDE - CAPE TOWN (11 MAR)
Bare it all on Saturday, 11 March 2017 and join cyclists in the World Naked Bike Ride - Cape Town. Setting off from the Sea Point Library car park at around 10am, the peaceful, imaginative and somewhat insane cycling race seeks to create awareness around environmental issues, like harmful carbon emissions and oil dependency, and to highlight the vulnerability of cyclists on South African roads. This year, participants are invited to take part on any human-powered vehicles, like unicycles, rollerblades or skates, scooters, wheelchairs, prams and more.
COST: Entry to the nude cycling challenge is FREE of charge. Click through to the event for more information.
CAPE TOWN CYCLE TOUR (12 MAR)
What started out as a peaceful protest to raise awareness about the need for bicycle lanes in South Africa in 1977 has evolved into the largest individually timed cycling event in the world. Now in its 40th year, the Cape Town Cycle Tour (formerly The Argus) takes place on Sunday, 12 March 2017 and sees more than 30, 000 riders traverse a gruelling 109-km circular stretch that includes a scenic leg over the thrilling Chapman’s Peak Drive.
COST: Entries for the tour CLOSED in August 2016; click through to the event for information on fees and race pack collection. Spectators are welcome to support the cyclists at predetermined points.
GREENPOP REFOREST FEST (10 – 19 MAR)
Join the treevolution and head down to the Platbos Forest near Gansbaai for a rocking weekend of camping, great tunes, good food and loads of tree planting. Over two weekends in March, the lovely people from Greenpop and the Platbos Conservation Trust invite eager volunteers to help plant over 8000 trees in these ancient woodlands in an effort to reforest a natural wonder. The first event runs from Friday, 10 to Sunday 12 March 2017, and a Friend's Fest that takes place from Friday, 17 to Sunday, 19 March 2017; in both cases though, limited spots are available, so book yours now!
COST: Tree-planters can book tickets via Quicket.co,za: they cost between R280p/p and R500p/p depending on which ticket you select. Kids tickets will cost R220p/p and kiddies under four can go along for free!
CAPE TOWN CARNIVAL (18 MAR)
Cape Town comes alive with that carnival buzz with the seventh annual Cape Town Carnival dances into town on Saturday, 18 March 2017. For this year, the theme for the extravagant shindig is “AMAZA - Ocean Odyssey” and celebrates the city’s amazing surrounding oceans. This exceptionally popular fiesta highlights the diversity of the Western Cape with elaborate dance routines, costumes and floats that turn Green Point into a colourful spectating paradise. The festivities start warming up from 4pm to culminate into the cultural explosion that is the parade. So grab some mates or head out with the family for a fun-filled Saturday celebrating the vivid beauty of the Mother City!
COST: Access to the family-friendly festival and end-party is absolutely free!
ABSA CAPE EPIC MTB STAGE RACE (19 – 26 MAR)
Adrenaline junkies and mountain biking (MTB) enthusiasts, listen up! The 2017 Absa Cape Epic MTB Stage Race is set kick up the dust from Saturday, 19 to Sunday, 26 March 2017. The stage race sees professional and amateur riders traverse 691-km of gruelling Western Cape trail, including 15 400m of climbing, as they make their way from the Meerendal Wine Estate in Durbanville to Val de Vie in Franschhoek.
COST: Entries for the 2017 race are closed. Entry to the Prologue and Grand Finale are free for spectators; click through to the events for more information.
ATKV OESFEES (25 MAR)
The 2017 ATKV Oesfees (formerly the Franschhoek Oesfees) dances its way onto the March calendar to, once again, celebrate the end of the grape harvest, local music, the culture of the Boland and good ol’ fashioned Kaapsekos at the Solms-Delta Wine Estate on Saturday, 25 March 2017. This 12-hour soiree also pays homage to the farm workers who made the harvest possible, and appropriately, there’s something on the bill for everyone. With myriad acts billed to perform on the day, there will be very little reason to keep those feet from tapping.
COST: Tickets can be pre-booked at the Solms-Delta Wine Estate office or online via Plankton.mobi and Computicket.com; they will also be sold at the gate on the day. The price ranges from R40p/p to R120p/p and varies according to ticket type – little ones younger than the age of two years enter for only R1.
EARTH HOUR IN CAPE TOWN (25 MAR)
Do your part this March and participate in the 2017 Earth Hour in Cape Town on Saturday, 25 March 2017. This global environmental initiative calls on ordinary people to take a stand against climate change by turning off all non-essential lights between 8:30pm and 9:30pm. The grassroots movement was started by World Wildlife Fund in 2007 in Australia, where 2.2 million residents in Sydney turned off their lights for an hour. To date, more than 7000 cities and towns worldwide have taken part in this worthy cause.
COST: Participation is gratis, mahala and for free!
FREE CAPE TOWN INTERNATIONAL JAZZ FESTIVAL CONCERT (29 MAR)
If you weren’t able to secure tickets for the 2017 Cape Town International Jazz Festival or you just want to catch a glimpse of what’s in store at the annual musical calendar highlight, then don’t miss out on the FREE Cape Town Jazz Concert at Greenmarket Square on Wednesday, 29 March 2017. The mahala Mother City show features a heady line-up of some of the best acts set to perform at the weekend-long event.
COST: Access to this event is FREE!
PLEASE NOTE: All dates are subject to change.
These are only a few of the happenings in Cape Town and surrounds for the month of March, so be sure to check out our use our events section for an up-to-date overview of happenings in Cape Town. Also, don’t forget to subscribe to our newsletter and if you have a smart phone, add m.capetownmagazine.com to your home screen for quick access on the go!
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