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Posted on: Thursday, 3 November 2011

Christmas Markets in Cape Town 2011 – it’s that time of year again

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Christmas Markets

Christmas Markets

See our updated list for 2013 – Christmas Markets in South Africa

Markets in Cape Town are extremely popular. On Saturdays in particular, you have your pick of food markets and craft markets, as more and more of these  popular ways to shop emerge to satisfy our growing urge to buy local.

And at Christmas, if you’re anything like me, then avoiding the annual shopping ‘rush’ that happens without fail is a top priority! Having the option of Christmas markets, where you can pick up locally made, original and highly individual gifts (that aren’t made in China), as well as local food items, means that Christmas might again acquire a sense of gentle rest, neighbourliness and festivity, rather than the angst-filled, queue hopping nightmare that it has become.

Here are the markets you can still attend (for some, like Kamers vol Geskenke, and the Constantia Gift Fair have already passed us by):

Christmas Craft Market

Christmas Craft Market

28 October to 6 November: Franschhoek Christmas Market

Need to get there fairly quickly if you’re still going to make this wonderful market at the Town Hall in Huguenot Road in Franschhoek. Not only do you find the crème of local design and craft to top up your Christmas stockings, but a portion of the proceeds go to the Anna Foundation. The market stretches over ten days and includes a selection of light meals and something to drink under shady trees. Wonderful day outing.

Venue: Franschhoek Town Hall, 37 Huguenot Road, Franschhoek
Time: 9am – 6pm (Sundays 10am – 4pm)
More info: +27 (0)72 254-7722

Nitida Xmas Night Market

Nitida Xmas Night Market

25 & 26 November: Nitida Xmas Night Market

This year’s wonderful market of delicious food, selected gifts and tree accessories, clothes, beads, handmade cards, pottery, wine, plants and more food, also includes Christmas carols sung by the Welgemoed Primary’s Junior choir on the Friday from 6.30pm, and Saturday is set to be mouthwatering if the promise of breakfast in the morning is anything to go by. This market takes place on the Nitida Wine Farm in Durbanville. If you think you might get hungry you could book a table for lunch at their Tables Restaurant.

Venue: Nitida Wine Farm, Old Tygervalley Road, Durbanville
Time: 25 Nov, 5pm-9.30pm and 26 Nov, 8am-12.30pm
More info: Telephone +27 (0)83 651-0699

Xmas Candlelight Market

Xmas Candlelight Market

2 & 3 December: Slowfood Christmas Candlelight market

This market, although labelled the ‘Candlelight Market’, is in fact the Stellenbosch Fresh Goods Market’s Christmas market. And a great market if you’re after organic meat and turkey for your Christmas dinner, and haven’t yet made a Christmas cake. Whilst there is a focus on food and all things slow, there is also a boutique gift and clothing section with local crafts. Bring your own blanket as there is also carol singing, and the chance to taste the product of micro-breweries and boutique wineries.

Venue: Oude Libertas, Stellenbosch
Time: 6pm-10pm
More info: Telephon +27 (0)21 886-8514

Designer-Maker Market

Designer-Maker Market

14-16 December: Designer-Maker Festive Market

Now in its third year, this artisan market is held in the courtyard of The Freeworld Design Centre, next door to the oldest operating church in Cape Town – the Evangelical Luthern Church, and will include the popular Carols by Candlelight – a non-denominational event within the church on the evening of 14 December. Exhibitors at the market are all designers and have been handpicked for the event. There are also a number of food offerings, and a sit-down dinner menu will be available in the café.

Venue: The Freeworld Design Centre, 71 Waterkant Street, on the fanwalk
Time: Wed 14 Dec, 3.30pm-9pm, Thurs 15, Fri 16, 10.30am–9pm
More info: Telephone Zurita on +27 (0)83 573-9943

Earth Fair Xmas Market

Earth Fair Xmas Market

16 December: Earth Fair Christmas Market

A wonderful food market in the southern suburb of Tokai, the Earth Fair Market is a regular Wednesday and Saturday occurrence, but this date is specifically to celebrate Christmas and promises not only to be a foodie evening of note, but to include a selection of textiles, frames, jewellery, body pamper products, Christmas cakes, handmade bags and more. Go with the intention of having dinner, as there is always a wonderful selection of meals, real beer and organic wine. If you miss the Christmas market or really enjoy what they have to offer you can visit the Earth Fair Market twice a week.

Venue: South Palms, Tokai (near Builders Warehouse)
Time: 3pm – 9pm
More info: Telephone +27 (0)84 220-3856

Cobble Walk Xmas Market

Cobble Walk Xmas Market

16-18 & 21-23 December: Cobble Walk Christmas Market

A Christmas extension of the regular Cobble Walk Lifestyle Market in Durbanville, the Cobble Walk market promises to be a wonderful space in which to shop Christmas, particularly if you leave it until the last minute, as its second spurt takes place literally a couple of days before the day. Only down side is that it’s in a shopping centre, but perhaps you can turn a blind eye for once.

Venue: Cobble Walk Centre, cnr Verdi Boulevard and De Villiers Road, Sonstraal Heights, Cape Town North
Time: 9am-5pm
More info: Telpehone Barbara on +27 (0)79 983-7830

Kloovenburg Xmas Market

Kloovenburg Xmas Market

17 December: Kloovenburg Wine & Olive Estate Christmas Market

Great space in which to spend a day and come away with gifts for everyone, particularly in the food department, although there will also be jewellery and body products. Kloovenburg now also do a festive season hamper, which includes their olive oil and luxury body product range. But the array of produce from the surrounding valley, light meals, and wine are exceptional. Invite friends and family to meet up with you in the Riebeek Valley – always inspirational.

Venue: Kloovenburg Wine Estate, Riebeek Kasteel
Time: 9.30am-3pm
More info: Telephone +27 (0)22 448-1635

Blaauwklippen Market

Blaauwklippen Market

18-20 December: Blaauwklippen Estate, Stellenbosch

This is a weekly Sunday family market that is extending its usual reach to include a special Christmas market. Held in the Carriage Museum, there will be an array of fresh

produce that includes breads, cheeses, preserves and a selection of non-food items like jewellery, clothing and arts and crafts. Wine tasting is obviously on the cards, but the market prides itself too on selling only craft beers – a draw card for many an unwilling partner.

Venue: Blaauwklippen Estate, Stellenbosch
Time: 18 Dec, 10am-3pm, 19, 20 Dec, 4pm-9pm
More info: Telephone +27 (0)21 880-0133

Adderley Street Market

Adderley Street Market

Adderley Street Night Market

Had to include this here as it’s such a festive atmosphere. Whilst the products are not always local, it is a fantastic place to walk beneath the Christmas lights of Adderley Street in amongst Capetonians, the night before Christmas. The markets usually include around 200 stall holders and a feast of entertainers. It’s loud, fun and happening. Look out for dates and times.

Venue: Adderley Street, Cape Town Central
Time: Please enquire
More info: Telephone Zolani Zenzile on +27 (0)21 419-1881

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Helen Rushton


After living in London and travelling the world for many years and more recently living in the Mother City, I now reside on a tranquil sugar cane farm in Kearsney; an area steeped in the history of South Africa’s sugar industry. During the summer months I get involved with the community by assisting the local primary school with swimming lessons at our country club. Some of my favourite things are reading or picking freshly grown vegetables and Iceland poppies in our garden. Milly, my boxer loves her walks to the river that runs through our farm and sometimes, Sandy the cat I hand reared, joins us for a stroll!

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