There is a definite shift towards buying local (if you hadn’t already noticed the number of foodie and artisan craft markets that have mushroomed in your neighbourhood).
Never more so than at Christmas. For no matter how easy the Internet makes buying gadgets, there is nothing like buying your gifts, and food, from the local community.
Not only is it ethical to support local business, but it also keeps our communities strong.
The bonuses for you include: artisan crafters and food providers sell one-off gifts and offers that nobody else will have, you’re supporting South African entrepreneurs, you will probably spend less, and you help to build the local community.
Durban is alive with local talent, and a feast of Christmas markets. This year is not a case of where will you find local gifts, but: how will you make a choice between all the markets.
10 Top Markets In The Countdown To Christmas in Durban 2015…
1. BAYNESFIELD VINTAGE CHRISTMAS MARKET
The unique setting of this market, in the grounds of the Baynesfield Museum, is worth the drive alone. Added to this is the vintage tractors, and other old farm machinery, a heritage garden (5 hectares of graceful, old trees, camellias and other spectacular plants), as well as the largest collection of sewing machines in the country. And that’s over and above the food and craft stalls.
Tours of the Victorian homestead are by appointment, so book ahead.
2. ESSENWOOD MARKET
The weekly Essenwood Market under the trees is practically an institution it has been around so long. But it never fails to deliver the goods – fantastic, original artisan products and crafts displayed in time for Christmas. Foodies will not go empty handed either – freshly baked breads, cup cakes, homemade desserts and pies, cheeses, pancakes and a tea garden – there is something for everyone.
Where: Essenwood Park, Essenwood Road, Berea
When: Saturday mornings, 09h00 to 14h00
3. I HEART CHRISTMAS MARKET
Save the date and shop local at one of Durban’s favourite markets. Eat great food, listen to live music and choose from a feast of local artists and crafters who produce jewellery, shoes, clothes, cup cakes, beadwork, home décor, soaps, macaroons, kids clothing, handcrafted longboards and many other highly original gift ideas.
Where: Imbizo Lawns, Moses Mabida Soccer Stadium, Stamford Hill
When: Sat 12 & 19 Dec 2015
4. KZN CHRISTMAS MARKET FESTIVAL
One of the biggest Christmas markets in the province, this market operates as a one-stop store allowing you to enter, shop and then pay at till points. Craftsmen from across KwaZulu Natal display their handcrafted, high quality gifts, décor, toys, and food on tables.
This indoor market has adopted a retail layout with both shopping baskets and credit card facilities. There is also a food court, should you get hungry.
Where: City Hill, Greenmeadow Lane, Hillcrest
When:15 to 19 Dec, 2015
5. PLAY MARKET, GIBA GORGE
Not only does this market have a great venue, but their products are beautiful too. The Play Market is unusual as it is aimed specifically at children (that’s little and big ones). It provides a space in which to chill and to stock up on a range of goodies – designer clothes, décor, jewellery, toys, and food. All stallholders source and develop their own products and services to provide a range of variety, freshness, taste and creativity.
There are bikes, a lawn on which to run, excursions to a waterfall, and trees under which to sit and chill. For kids there is a play area, face painting, mini bike track and more. For parents there is craft beer and wine.
Where: Giba Gorge Mountain Bike Park, 110 Stockville Road
When: Sunday 23 Nov, 09h00 to 14h00 (Christmas extravaganza puppet show) & Sun 6 Dec 2015
6. ROOFTOP NIGHT MARKET
This popular market needs little introduction. Held monthly at Musgrave Centre’s parking lot Level 5, the market hosts two Christmas markets before the 25th December. Go to experience slow food, incredible local entrepreneurs who sell their unique creations, great music and a great vibe.
The locals love it, I’m sure you will too.
Where: Musgrave Centre, Musgrave Road, Berea
When: 4 & 18 December 2015
7. SHONGWENI ANNUAL CHRISTMAS MARKET
The Shongweni Farmers and Craft Christmas market promises an exciting line-up of products specially for the festive season – the highlight of the year (this local market serves up the goods every Saturday at 6.30am). Live music, festive, unique handcrafted items for out of the ordinary gifts, and scrumptious food.
This year’s choice is bigger and better and includes Christmas décor, jewellery, shoes, clothes, toys, live entertainment, fun activities for kids and festive season atmosphere.
Where: Lot 457, MR 551, Shongweni (this is a new address; check the map on their website)
When: 16 December 2015, 09h00 to 17h00
8. THE FESTIVE GIFT FAIR
This festive gift fair is a collection of gifts, crafts, clothing designers, decorations, local artesian products, jewellery, children’s gifts, cards arts and crafts, accessories, deli products and Christmas fare (100 exhibitors). The two-day event also provides a feast of family entertainment, and give-aways.
Where: Greyville Convention Centre, 150 Avondale Road (R20 entrance fee for adults)
When: 21 to 22 Nov 2015, 09h00 to 16h00
9. THE MORNING TRADE
Another weekly market that can easily double as a Christmas market for its originality and flair, particularly for food purchases. Expect an excellent turn out of artisan producers, local farmers and organic merchants peddling their wares, which include anything from fresh produce and flowers to quality free-range meats, locally produced food and speciality goods.
This community-orientated market is one of the best.
Where: 15 Station Drive, off Umgeni Road
When: Sundays, 08h00 to 13h00
10. WONDER MARKET, UMHLANGA
This monthly Sunday market promises the best in food, craft and design. No longer a new kid on the block it is a family-friendly food and craft market set in the grassy spaces of Chris Saunders Park. The focus is mainly on food, but crafters and designers add to the atmosphere with their pick of Christmas gift ideas.
Furry friends are welcome.
Where: Chris Saunders Park, Umhlanga
When: 20 Nov, 06 & 13 Dec 2015, 09h00 to 14h00