Christmas in south africa

While in Germany the Christmas season is associated with cold temperatures, warm drinks and – when things are going well – even snow, in the home of the Sonnenglas lanterns at the lower tip of the southern hemisphere temperatures of over 30 degrees prevail.

The 25. December

Unlike our tradition of giving presents on Christmas Eve, children in South Africa find their gifts on the 25. December under the Christmas tree. By the way, despite tropical temperatures, the Christmas tree is also an integral part of the Christmas tradition in South Africa. People spend the day at the beach or in the parks. In the evening they sit together under the Christmas tree. The fireplace is richly decorated and there are often Christmas socks hanging from the fireplaces as seen in American movies. Afterwards, there is singing together and church families attend Christmas mass at a late hour.

For example, the Xhosa – one of the largest population groups in South Africa – celebrate Christmas in a completely different way. Many Xhosa then drive hours home to the Eastern Cape in minibuses to visit their families. Christmas trees, whole& Co. does not exist here. But of course there is also a lot of eating, dancing and visiting the village medicine man. A typical dish for the festive season is Umngqusho, a dish of brown beans, white corn, spinach and grilled chicken.

The classic fir tree is also found in South Africa, but not in all of them

What do South Africans eat at Christmas?

Since Christmas is celebrated under the blazing heat of the South African sun, many families meet during the day with a full picnic basket on the beach or in the parks. Typical is also the South African BBQ, which is called "Braai" locally. In the evening hours a real Christmas feast is served.

Meat dishes are an integral part of South African cuisine. So on Christmas Day z.B. Turkey, duck or suckling pig dished up. Rice, raisins and vegetables are served. Families who are not financially well off often save up for a long time to be able to afford meat on the holidays, preferring to do without it on other days.

The dessert is usually a sweet cake or pudding. If you are looking for something typically South African for your Christmas dessert, why not try our Baobab Chocolate Mousse?.

A holiday roast is part of Christmas for many families in South Africa / © Alison Marras.jpg

Typical German Christmas market in South Africa

The tradition of the German Christmas market is known all over the world. No wonder that there are some resourceful Germans (or even non-Germans) who take this tradition to other countries. South Africa also has a number of Christmas markets with stalls selling mulled wine, stollen and typical South African dishes such as curry.

In the Cape Town Magazine you will find a list of Christmas markets in Cape Town and the surrounding area. In Durban there is the I HEART MARKET and in Johannesburg, where our sun glass is also made, people meet at the Parkview Christmas Market.

Mulled wine, punch& Co. You can also find it in South Africa / © Roman Kraft

How to say "Merry Christmas" in South Africa?

Do you also wonder how to wish people in South Africa a Merry Christmas?? In South Africa there are eleven official languages, among them also English. The easiest way to wish people in South Africa a Merry Christmas is to say "Merry Christmas". In Afrikaans, which is spoken in the more southwestern South Africa, people say "Geseende Kersfees"; in northeastern South Africa, where Zulu is spoken, people wish "Sinifisela Ukhisimusi Omuhle".

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