CapeTownMagazine.com

Afrikaburn Festival near Tankwa Karoo National Park

Unwrapping Cape Town with you.
Also engage with our other channels
to find something you don't want to miss.
 
www.capetownmagazine.com/subscribe
CapeTownMag
CapeTownMagazine.com
capetownmag

Afrikaburn Festival near Tankwa Karoo National Park

The dusty Karoo desert comes alive to host one of the most radical festivals on the festival lover’s calendar

Afrikaburn, South Africa’s answer to the legendary American Burning Man Festival, is back in the dusty Karoo for an extended seven days of art, music, performance and creative expression from 29 April to 5 May 2019.

Set in the arid, semi-desert Northern Cape on a private farm called Stonehenge (roughly 300km from Cape Town), the other-worldly affair calls on free spirits to gather and create a temporary city (Tankwa Town) based on the radical; radical art, radical self-expression, radical self-reliance and, above all else, the radical sense of unity that exists between the ‘Burners’ people that attend each year.

CORE OF THE 2019 AFRIKABURN ARTS FESTIVAL

The ethos of the old festival comes from a set of ten guiding principles that encourage, amongst other things, communal effort, decommodification and total expression of the self. This means that, whether it’s in the form of an extravagant costume, provision of basic essentials (like food and drink) or a twisted piece of art, contributions to the spirit and function of Tankwa Town are expected from everyone. Money is no object in the temporary city as nothing is for sale, and generally, if you want something, you trade for it or ask for it. Afrikaburn fosters giving and letting go of material goods to enjoy the outdoors and reclaim some essence of human nature.

WHAT HAPPENS AT THE 2019 AFRIKABURN ARTS FESTIVAL?

Every year, Afrikaburn has a theme; in 2019, the theme is Ephemerality, the concept of things being transitory, existing only briefly. The desert experience was never meant to be easy, or a holiday. This gathering requires every citizen of Tankwa Town pitches up and pitches in. In order to celebrate the values that the festival has carried throughout its history; here are some of the ways that one can use to represent this theme:

• The way you dress – Be unique and playful in the way you dress. You could use this chance to wear ‘that thing’ that you’re afraid to wear in public.

• A mutant vehicle – a motorised, significantly modified vehicle (a bike, a car) that’s a piece of moveable art and only allowed to go at 10km/h, for the purpose of play try a unicycle or a clown-car.

• Theme camps – interactive camps set up to welcome, engage and entertain fellow Burners. In this case, camps can follow the theme of Working Title by incorporating something fun, colourful and out-of-the-box into their camps (or supplying materials out of which fellow Burners can create fun things).

• Art installations – pretty much anything that you can dream up and execute in the Karoo. In light of the theme, Burners can create interactive installations allowing passers-by to take a piece of Afrikaburn with them.

When it comes to entertainment, it’s completely up to you, the participant, to bring whatever talents you have, because you are not just the audience; you are also part of the show. Remember that this is not to show which one can outshine the other, it’s about having fun. Play around!

There is no ‘main stage’ and no power supply. So, a random piece of desert or one of the theme camps can become an elaborate set if you want it to be. Every kind of act is welcome as long as it doesn’t interfere with anyone else’s good time, and a party can pop up wherever the party people are. On the last night, the burning of the San Clan, a sculptural representation of a piece of San rock art signifying unity and community, illuminates the desert sky and marks the end of another rad seven days.

WHAT TO BRING TO THE 2019 AFRIKABURN ARTS FESTIVAL

In short, everything.

Six days of fire and festivities can be hectic to say the least, but with no on-site vendors and no access to nearby shops and stores, it’s crucial to be adequately prepared. Do not expect to rock up with beers and a Bar One and survive.

People are encouraged to bring a minimum of five litres of water per person per day, enough food and supplies to sustain you for a week in the Karoo, sunscreen, a wind-proof tent (including heavy duty pegs and a hammer) and a bicycle (essential).  Most important is the adherence to the concept of Leave No Trace Behind – everything that you bring, you must be able to take with you, and no damage should be done to the natural environment. 

It’s worth noting that the camps are also divided into the blue zone, which is quiet and family-friendly, and the red zone, which is for those who can stand a little more noise and action through the night.

DIRECTIONS TO THE 2019 AFRIKABURN ARTS FESTIVAL

• Take the N1 North, passing Paarl, Worcester and De Doorns

• 10km before you reach Touwsrivier and 160km from Cape Town, take the left turn onto the R46, towards Ceres. Note, Worcester and Touwsrivier are your last chances for petrol and supplies

• The road continues for approx. 40km and ends in a T-junction. Turn right onto the R355 towards Calvinia and Sutherland. Approx. 100m on, you’ll hit dirt road; stay on this for 113km

• Stay on the R355 towards Calvinia

• The road ends in a T-junction – turn right into Stonehenge Farm 

 TICKETS FOR THE 2019 AFRIKABURN FESTIVAL

Keep an eye on the tickets page on the Afrikaburn website for announcements.

Photograph credits: Simon O'Callaghan, Egon Tania and the Fata Morganas, and Simon Furlong

---

Get a Taste of The Magic at the AfrikaBurn After Party: Decompression.

Incredible Western Cape safari and family farm accommodation at Njalo-Njalo.

Plan your month with this overview of April events happening in and around Cape Town.

Interested in other festival events around Cape Town? Take a look at our overview of upcoming trance festivals in Cape Town and surrounds so you don’t miss a single shindig. 

---

Use our events section for an up-to-date overview of happenings in Cape Town. Also, don’t forget to subscribe to our newsletter.

Follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook, connect with us on LinkedIn, check out our photos on Instagram and follow our Pinterest boards for updates on what’s happening in and around the Mother City!

Cape Town Events Calendar
May 2019
SUN MON TUE WED THU FRI SAT
1 2 3 4
5 6 7 8 9 10 11
12 13 14 15 16 17 18
19 20 21 22 23 24 25
26 27 28 29 30 31

statements_5Fugard Classic “Statements” ...

Catch this stellar performance about forbidden love

VaseWhat Could Be Prettier Than A Room Full ...

An exhibition full of flowers in vases created by Cape Town’s top ceramicists

sotano_lambIt’s (Lamb) Burger Wednesdays at ...

... and while you eat, chill out to reggae by locals The Rivertones

a4_arts_foundationZanele Muholi Wants You To See The ...

And it’s free at the A4 Arts Foundation

Land_RewovenSee This Fascinating Interpretation of ...

Artist MJ Lourens pairs his modern landscapes with Pierneef’s, plus there’s cheese ...

gindulge1Get To Know Your Gins At This Mid-week ...

Make your October Wednesdays about food trucks, kids activities, desserts and gin at ...

sotano_lambTwo Lamb Burgers For the Price Of One

R110 gets you two fully stacked meals at both Sotanos

rodan_kane_hartRodan Kane Hart: Making the Most of ...

An expansive gallery and pristine outdoor landscape showcase a free exhibition by a young ...

William_Kentridge_2A Monumental Exhibition To Open At The ...

The iconic South African artist’s largest exhibition in Africa in over a decade

blowfish_new_4Half-Price Sushi Every Wednesday and ...

And drink in the sunset and view (and a cocktail)

Kinky BootsSmash-Hit Kinky Boots Extended To 2020 ...

With music by Cyndi Lauper, several Tonys and a Laurence Olivier Award

chicha4Get To Know Your Wine: Wednesdays are ...

Sample some fine wines and meet the makers behind your favourite tipple

Cherry_Glamping3Team Building is For Bonding, So Ditch ...

Hiking, biking, canopy tours and luxury glamping just 50 minutes outside of Cape Town

zingara_bombay5 Happy Hours, Every Day of The Week

And Cafe Paradiso has a weekend seafood platter special for two

vredenheim_2019_9Picnic Among The Golden Wildebeest on ...

A family game drive with a difference at Vredenheim

kaskaziBoost Your Week With A Hump Day Kayak ...

The chance to see ocean and bird life at sunrise and get to work on time

cocosafar_steak1From Rib Eye To Vegetarian – Here Are ...

Gourmet burgers and steak, as well as cocktails, are now on the menu at this all-day cafe ...

La Paris_Deli2Wednesday Delights at La Paris Deli in ...

A bakery and bistro experience at one of the most beautiful winelands wedding venues, now ...

cartelcafe6Lunch Sorted: A Midweek Buffet At The ...

Fill up your plate and tuck into a tasty lunch spread every Wednesday and Thursday: From ...

two_oceans_aquariumMake Memorable Moments at Cape Town’s ...

Throw a party unlike any other at the Mother City’s underwater wonderland

Comedyclub_new11End Hump Day With a Laugh At The ...

Share the experience at Cape Town Comedy Club in the Waterfront’s Pumphouse every ...

Om Revolution vinyasa poseHave an Outdoor Yoga Experience with ...

Embrace your inner yogi outdoors

asamisOverload On Asami’s Sushi And Noodles

Get sushi and noodle specials three days a week

galileo_kirstGet Comfy at Kirstenbosch Movie Nights ...

Great films, fabulous scenery, delicious food and cosy seats – look forward to a night ...

HaskellVineyards 6Save On A Meal and Wine For Two At This ...

Haskell Vineyards offers patrons a delicious meal and glass of wine at a discounted price

glam_barBeauty Special: Gelish or Shellac Nails ...

Book via Whatsapp: Workday-perfect nail treatments with free rinse and discounts on all ...

OX boat rides 110% Off: See The Marine Big 5 on an ...

Whales, dolphins, penguins, cape fur seals and mola mola (sunfish), an awesome boat trip ...

theatre and film costume hire25% Off Hollywood-Calibre Costume ...

Wednesdays only: Gorgeous vintage cocktail dresses to realistic historical costumes for ...

Strolla ChickenHalf-Price Rotisserie Chicken (& sides) ...

Warm at the fireplace inside or sip Corona on the Sunset Deck in shorts and slops (while ...

house of hLook Who's Serving a R50 Lunch Special ...

Loved by locals, House of H now does delicious new lunch specials – from boerie rolls ...

Park Inn_RGB_ItalianDinnerSpecial5All-You-Can-Eat Italian Dinner Special ...

Made fresh right in front of you, with your choice of sauces and toppings – this is one ...

beluga_whisylounge2-for-1 Whisky Wednesdays at Beluga

Your midweek escape just got a whole lot better with the 2-for-1 Wednesday whisky special ...

grub&vine_wineFree Wine Tasting Every Wednesday at ...

Grub & Vine’s #VineNight hosts a different wine farm

Vergenoegd_duckrun1Cheer On The Ducks At Vergenoegd Löw

Bring the kids along to experience the Duck Parade

pepperclubPepper Club Hotel Midweek Movie and ...

Movies and Dinner – the perfect couple…

WeatherGiveawaysTravel Tips