Expat in Johannesburg will have to get used to celebrating Christmas so early! Christmas markets and fairs start early October and run until start of December, mainly because the schools finish for their main summer holiday at the start of December and soon after everyone flees. My first year here I found it lonely and sad with the lack of Christmas Festivities. My favourite home comforts (Christmas Songs on the radio, Christmas parties, Christmas Specials on TV) weren’t here. Now I actually find it quite refreshing, and low key, with the celebration being about holidays and family time rather than the whole commercial take that there is in the UK and US.
What I have come to love about Christmas Shopping here, is the ability to buy your presents from local small businesses, through the wealth of Christmas Markets that take place across Joburg. Some are better than others, but here is our list of whats on when over the next few months!
FESTIVE MARKETS & SHOWS
By Word Of Mouth Festive Market - Sunday 6th And Monday 8th October
Hosted at The Polo Room at the Inanda Club. Word of Mouth host fantastic workshops sharing, decor looks, edible gifts and weaths, along with christmas food ideas.
Sanlan Handmade Contemporary Fair - 11th - 14th October
If you only get to one Christmas Market, make sure its this one! They alway curate the best of South African design (plus food and drink is amazing!)
Glenshiel Christmas Market- Westcliff 25th - 28th October
Catch the tail end of the Jacaranda's in this spectacular property. This annual fundraiser for St Johns Ambulance service hosts a high end carefully curated market and tea garden.
Bryanston Organic Christmas Night Markets - Every Tuesday From 20th November
Parkhurst Late Night Christmas Shopping - Thursday 22nd & 29th November
Parkview Christmas Market 30th November - 2nd December
Community Market, with carols sang by the local primary and high schools. Lovely outing for the whole family.
Boutique Christmas Market - Hyde Park - 24th- 25th November
Melrose Arch Christmas November 2nd - 3rd January - place to go and see beautiful christmas lights!
Linden Market - 1st & 2nd December.
Linden market is a local boutique market, they have managed to source some of the best products out there. Set in Emmarentia Dam, its a beautiful setting with kids play area, and great food and drink venders there is something for everyone.
Kamers - 4th - 9th December Pretoria.
From fashion to food… skincare to ceramics… jewellery, lifestyle, music and more – at Southdowns College, a trendy venue that perfectly reflects this uniquely South African event.
44 Stanley Christmas Market - 7th December - Date TBC
Christmas with Richard Cock - 8th & 9th December Join the the Symphony Choir of Johannesburg and the Johannesburg Festival Orchestra for a Christmas carol concert at the Linder Auditorium
(+ outdoor screen showing family christmas movies) TBC
Fourways Christmas Day And Night Market - 9th /10thDec & 16th/ 17th Dec Date TBC
The Neighbourgoods Market - Saturday Morning & 1st Thursday Of The Month