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Celebrate Christmas Eve & Christmas Day in Cape Town

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Celebrate Christmas Eve & Christmas Day in Cape Town

‘Tis the season of Santa, feasts, festivities and family! Here are 13 fun, no-fuss ways to celebrate the 2015 festive season in the Mother City.

In Cape Town, Santa gets to swap his suit for boardies, ditch his deers for springbokkies and drink draughts rather than milk. Christmas is always merrier in the Mother City given the countless opportunities for picnics on pristine beaches, cocktails beneath clear skies and gourmet cuisine at restaurants, eateries and wine estates with breathtaking views.

So don’t spend your festive season slaving over a hot stove in a busy kitchen (leave that to the professionals); book a table with family and friends at one of these hotspots for a scrumptious Christmas Eve dinner or Christmas Day lunch without the mess or fuss. From the famed switching on of the Adderley lights and carol sing-songs at Laborie to a special Christmas day lunch at Spier and a feel-good movie screening with Galileo, there’s plenty of ways to keep merry in our city.

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2015 CHRISTMAS EVENTS & DINNERS IN CAPE TOWN 
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Festive Lights Switch-on on Adderley Street (6 December)
For decades, locals and tourists alike have flocked to the CBD for the annual tradition of witnessing the official switch-on of the festive lights on Adderley Street. This year’s flick of the switch will happen on Sunday, 6 December 2015, and will be performed by the Executive Mayor with her merry band of mini helpers. There’ll be plenty of entertainment to keep folks occupied until the lights go on at 8:30pm, including live performances by Shimmy Isaacs, Jimmy Nevis and Cassper Nyovest. Take part in the fun, festive street party and delight in the sight of hundreds of brightly coloured twinkling stars lighting up Cape Town’s historic main pathway. This good old-fashioned way to kick-start the holidays always promises loads of festive flavour to get you in the mood for Santa’s season.

COST: Access to the event is gratis, mahala and for FREE! Please refer to the City’s website (www.capetown.gov.za) for more information and full road closure details.

Christmas Carols at Laborie (4 December)
Nothing ushers in the festive season better than traditional carols. This year, Laborie Wine Farm in Paarl valley is hosting a special carol showcase in its verdant vineyards on Friday, 4 December. Families and friends are invited to pack their picnic blankets and drive to the scenic wine farm for a night of sensational singing under the stars. The night’s entertainment will be choreographed by theatre director Norman McFarlane, and both the Winelands Chamber Choir and the La Rochelle High School Choir will be performing a selection of favourites for attendees to sing along to. Aside from the magical music, guests can anticipate a smorgasbord of tasty treats accompanied by fine wines from Laborie’s Harvest Restaurant, not to mention a visit from Santa for the little ones. Kids can also look forward to face painters, a balloon artist and a mini petting zoo starring Cupid the goat. The money from kids’ tickets will to the Paarl Post Christmas Fund, which provides a special holiday celebration for underprivileged children. Children and adults’ picnic hampers can be pre-booked if you anticipate you’ll need some sustenance in between the songs. 

COST: Tickets are available from webtickets.co.za and cost R80p/p for adults, R50p/p for children between the ages of 7 and 18, and R15p/p for kids aged 2 to 6. Guest will receive a glow stick and song sheet on arrival.

Kirstenbosch Carols by Candlelight (17 – 20 December)
Hark the herald angels sing! Hear some of Cape Town’s angelic voices at this annual festive event at the Kirstenbosch National Botanic Garden from Thursday, 17 to Sunday, 20 December 2015. Running for more than two decades and organised by the Rotary Club as a fundraising initiative, the family-friendly Carols by Candlelight is an institution on the festive calendar and a prime opportunity to experience the greenway on a balmy Cape Town summer evening. Visitors can purchase some light nibbles from where? Are there traders on site? and alcohol will be allowed into the venue as long as bottles remain concealed as it is a family event. No littering will be tolerated. 

COST: 
Ticket prices range from R20p/p to R75p/p for children, while adults pay between R90p/p and R100p/p depending on the night selected. For more information, contact the Kirstenbosch Rotary Club on +27 (0) 83 270 9286 or email carols@kirstenboschrotary.co.za. Click through to event for more information.

Christmas at Spier Wine Farm in Stellenbosch
Celebrate Christmas in Stellenbosch this year at one of the Cape Winelands region’s oldest establishments. The Spier Wine Farm is pulling out all the stops and corks for a festive experience to cater to all pockets, times and tastes. Kicking off the merrymaking on Christmas Eve with a special dinner for hotel guests, the Stellies-based farm is also offering a delectable Christmas Day lunch at its lauded Eight Restaurant.

COST: Prices vary and booking is essential. Pre-payment is required to confirm the reservation and a 100% cancellation fee will apply. Click through to the event for information on the offering and prices.

Christmas Day at The Galileo Open Air Cinema at Meerendal
Round off a day of feasting and festive family fun with a comedic Christmas Day film at the Galileo Open Air Cinema at Meerendal Wine Estate in the Cape Winelands. Bring the whole family, dress up in your best festive outfits and settle down to a touching, sweet performance from John Payne in the old classic Miracle on 34th Street. So, pack up the leftovers you were saving for your midnight snack (don’t pretend otherwise) and head over to this outdoor movie experience that is sure to leave you feeling oh-so jolly! If you don’t have any yummy takeaways from lunch (no judgies), don’t fret; this open-air cinema has a merry band of food and drink merchants to sort you out.

COST: Tickets are available via thegalileo.co.za and costs range between R79p/p and R149p/p. Click through to the event for more information.

Christmas Day Buffet at the Mount Nelson Hotel
Treat yourself to a festive feast of biblical proportions at this Christmas lunch buffet. The Mount Nelson Hotel is known for spoiling its patrons and this is certainly true when it comes to their buffet menu. From sultry salads and seafood to roasts and royal desserts, you will have to spend some time choosing what to have from the massive selection on offer.

COST: A spot at a table will cost R950p/p. Booking is essential and can be made by emailing restaurantreservations.mnh@belmond.com or by phoning +27 (0) 21 483 1000. Click through to the event for more information.

Christmas Eve Dinner at African Pride 15 on Orange Hotel
Tuck into a gourmet menu this Christmas in Cape Town at the African Pride 15 on Orange Hotel’s Savour Restaurant. Located in the centre of the Mother City, this stylish and contemporary eatery serves up a decadent festive season feast bound to suit any palate. This year, book for either Christmas Eve or Christmas dinner and expect culinary wonders such as tuna ceviche, Welsh beef carpaccio, sushi, a hearty carvery, Cape Malay curry, truffle and turkey pie, herb-crusted line fish and more. Dessert includes traditional mince pies, milk tart, black forest trifle and Malva pudding, followed by a cheese platter with biscuits and preserves.

COST: The Christmas Eve Dinner costs R650p/p. Booking is essential and can be done either by calling +27 (0) 21 469 8000 or emailing reservations@15onorangehotel.com; full pre-payment is required to secure the reservation.

Christmas at the Twelve Apostles Hotel & Spa’s Azure Restaurant
Enjoy a festive feast this Christmas in Camps Bay at the five-star Twelve Apostles Hotel and Spa’s Azure Restaurant. Instead of catering for the family, why not head down to this exclusive eatery, situated on the edge of Table Mountain National Park and overlooking the Atlantic, for a gourmet Christmas Eve four-course set menu or a Christmas Day lunch buffet where the only real work is getting up and going back for seconds. This festive selection includes traditional Christmas favourites with a gourmet twist: think White Chocolate Eggnog and more. Not to mention, the halls will be decked out in festive décor and patrons will have Christmas crackers to pull and merry hats to don for this very jolly occasion. On Christmas Day there will also be live entertainment on the cards and even a visit from Saint Nick!

  • Christmas Eve Dinner at Azure Restaurant
  • Christmas Day Lunch Buffet at Azure Restaurant

COST: Costs vary according to the offering and the price includes festive Christmas hats and crackers as well as gratuity. Menu is subject to change. Click through to the events for more information.

Christmas Day Lunch Buffet at Hazendal Wine Estate
For a festive family meal make a merry meander into the Boland Winelands for a scrumptious Cape Christmas lunch buffet in Stellenbosch at the Hazendal Wine Estate. With a sumptuous spread of firm favourites like Roasted Leg of Lamb with a Merlot red wine jus and Smoked Gammon and delectable delights like a Chocolate Fountain and Hummingbird Cake, this is a feast fit for the whole family. Take a break from the kitchen and dine on delicious dishes as you relax to the sound of a live pianist and the kids entertain themselves on the estate’s rolling lawns, the jumping castle and playground.

COST: Lunch costs R385p/p for adults and children under 12 dine for R192p/p; drinks are for patrons’ own account. The festive feast will be served from 12pm to 3pm and booking is essential. Click through to the event for more information.

The Nutcracker Ballet and Fairy Parade
A beloved Christmas tradition, everyone’s favourite festive ballet is back for another year of toys, mischief and magic. Young and old are invited to witness the wonder of Clara’s nutcracker doll coming to life, battling the Rat King and dancing with the beautiful Sugar Plum Fairy as this fairy tale unfolds. On Thursday, 24 December 2015, the popular Fairy Parade will be held after the 2pm show, inviting children to dress up as their best fairy tale characters and take to the stage to meet the dancers and receive a special gift from Santa.

COST: The show runs from Tuesday, 15, to Thursday, 24 December 2015 at various times. Tickets are available via Computicket.com and range from R120p/p to R160p/p depending on your selected seating. Visit Capetowncityballet.org.za for more information.

Christmas at Park Inn by Radisson in Newlands
‘Tis the season to be jolly! Christmas comes with the all the trimmings at the Park Inn in Newlands, which has come up with a hassle-free lunch buffet that puts the fun back into the festive season. Bring your friends, family and loved ones for a spectacular lunch buffet that will fill any stomach to the brim with delish desserts, yummy starters and that all important gammon with honey and mustard sauce. Other magnificent menu items include sweet corn chowder, turkey rolls, seafood skewers, lemon garlic roast potatoes, baked cheesecake, mini pavlovas with chocolate mousse and more. So get the family ready for a fun, stylish all-you-can-eat spread and don’t worry about cleaning those pesky dishes afterwards.  

COST: This Christmas lunch costs R345p/p. Bookings can be made by calling the hotel on +27 (0) 21 822 6500 or emailing info.newlands.capetown@rezidorparkinn.com for more information. 

Christmas at Radisson Blu
Offering gorgeous vistas of the Atlantic Ocean and optimally located at the prestigious V&A Waterfront, the beautiful Radisson Blu is pulling out all the stops this Christmas Day with a delectable lunch buffet.  Lunch will be served from 12:30pm until 3pm, and there’ll be a selection of scrumptious cold and hot spreads, followed by a smorgasbord of desserts.  From the cold selection there’ll be delicacies such as ostrich carpaccio, mascarpone and smoked salmon salad, grilled mango with coconut and chickpeas, and cream of spinach and feta soup. Moving on to the hot spread, you’ll find grilled and peppered crusted beef, traditional lamb curry, spiced butter chicken, exotic seafood bake with a creamy mustard and lime sauce, and pesto and Emmental cheese gnocchi. If you still have space, make sure you end the feast with mint and pistachio cheesecake, chocolate caramel profiteroles filled with vanilla cream, brandy snap baskets filled with black cherry mousse, and all manner of other delights.

COST: The buffet costs R600p/p and children under 12 pay R150p/p. Phone +27(0)21 441 3000 or email capetown.reservations@radissonblu.com.

Christmas at the Grande Roche Hotel
Spoil yourself with a culinary banquet this Christmas at Grande Roche Hotel's Bosman’s Restaurant. Situated in Paarl in the heart of the Cape Winelands, this modern hotel eatery will take diners on a gastronomic adventure with a five-course Christmas Eve dinner menu and a Christmas Day buffet menu jam-packed with decadent dishes and festive delights. Patrons can relax on the terrace while enjoying the sweeping views and chowing down on award-winning nosh. On Christmas Day, there’ll be a live band and children’s entertainment, including a water slide, face painting and swimming.

COST: Costs vary according to the offering – Christmas Eve is R1445p/p (R722.50 for children under 11), while the Christmas Day buffet is R685p/p (R342.50 for children under 11).  Booking is essential and can be made by calling +27 (0) 21 863 5100. Do note that dietary requirements must be stated upon booking.

Christmas on Table Mountain
This year Santa Claus and his Christmas Faeries decided to not descend into dingy, dusty and dark chimneys, but rather to head to the top of Table Mountain. That’s right boys and girls, the jolly ol’ man from the North Pole is bringing festive cheer to one of the one of the world’s ‘New7Wonders of Nature’. Santa and his crew will visit Table Mountain on Christmas Eve and on Christmas Day, with plenty of treats and entertainment planned to keep kiddies (and grown-up kiddies) engrossed in the magic of Christmas coupled with majestic mountain views.

COST: Tickets for the cable car can be bought online via Webtickets.co.za (there is an option to select a date) or at the cableway ticket office. Prices range from R60p/p to R350p/p, depending on age, time of the day and whether or not it is a return trip.

Christmas at the Cape Town Comedy Club (3, 4, 10, 11, 15 December)
Although closed on Christmas Day, the Mother City’s laugh-a-minute club will still be providing some serious guffaws in the lead up to the 25th December, with a selection of side-splitting acts. The lunch show’s ticket price includes entrance, a welcome drink, three-course lunch and a three hour show featuring three fiercely funny comedians.

COST: Tickets cost R390p/p and the shows will start at 12pm and run until 4pm. Bookings can be made through Computicket.com.

Christmas at Richard’s Supper Stage and Bistro
Good mood food, fabulous festivities and the Khayelitsha Gospel Choir combine to make guests extra merry this year at the much loved Richard’s Supper Stage. With celebrations starting at 12pm, Richard’s will delight guests with culinary surprises, a visit from Santa and some carolling by candlelight. The Christmas lunch includes starters such as freshly baked breads with smoked snoek and Peppadew pate, and wild mushroom and goats cheese terrines, and roast beef medallions with peppered jus and grilled line fish with steamed mussels for mains. For dessert, guests can anticipate Christmas pudding with vanilla anglaise, fresh sliced fruit with Chantilly cream and lemon and custard tart.

COST: Lunch and entertainment costs R400p/p, and bookings can be made by emailing bookings@richardscapetown.co.za or phoning +27(0)76 144 4809.

Christmas Eve at Boschendal Farm Estate
‘Tis the night before Christmas and all through the house not a creature is stirring, not even a mouse. Why? Because everyone’s gone to Boschendal of course. Escape to the beautiful Werf Restaurant for a hassle-free Christmas Eve in the newly renovated restaurant, which overlooks the expansive gardens and offers a set menu showcasing Chef Christiaan Campbell’s exemplary farm-to-table cuisine. Alternatively, pop into the historical Rhone Homestead Restaurant to sample an enticing selection of traditional South African Christmas-inspired cuisine, with family-friendly dishes served buffet style.

COST: Both offerings cost R495p/p for adults and R280p/p for children under 12 (this excludes a service fee of 10% and all beverages). Bookings can be made by emailing reservations@boschendal.co.za or phoning +27(0)21 870 4274. 

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The festivities don’t end there; celebrate New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day in Cape Town and surrounds with some of the hottest and biggest parties and scrumptious dinners.

Also, have a squiz at our overview of annual December events to find out about more hot happenings taking place during the month.

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Check out 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 smartphone, add m.capetownmagazine.com to your home screen for quick access on the go!

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