Holiday activities that won’t leave you out of pocket

By Drum Digital
01 April 2014

With school holidays upon us again, don’t think hours in front of the TV is the only option to keep your brood busy. Be creative and plan an enjoyable day out with your kids. A fun day doesn’t have to cost you thousands of rands.

Here are a few suggestions to inspire you.

A few general suggestions

  1. Go for a picnic in a park nearby your home. Involve your child in making items for the picnic hamper by, for instance, skewering cocktail sausages and pieces of cheese on toothpicks. Or take along paper plates which they can decorate by drawing on them.
  2. Find out what holiday programmes your local library has arranged. Libraries often have wonderful activities and reading nooks which can keep kids happy for hours without it costing you a cent.
  3. Do a good deed or volunteer work with your child. For instance you could visit an old-age home together and give the residents a homemade card and an Easter egg. Talk to your child about why you’re doing it and ask them how they want to/can help.

Affordable fun activities in your city:

Cape Town

  • The Company’s Garden is open the whole day and entry is free. Kids can explore to their heart’s content, and see a squirrel or two. Another free outdoor attraction is Green Point Park.
  • Bugz Family Playpark is great fun. It boasts rowing boats, quad bikes, a toy train, jungle gyms and sandpits to keep kids occupied. Entry to the park is R35 a child and R25 an adult, and it’s perfect for families with not much play area at home. Call 021-988-8836 for more information.
  • The Warrior Toy Museum in Simon’s Town is affordable (entrance fee is R5) and young and old alike will be fascinated by the collection of antique toys such as doll’s houses, cars and teddy bears.
  • Cave Golf at the V&A Waterfront is a putt-putt course with plenty of interesting obstacles to keep you busy. It costs just R15 a person for a round.

Durban and environs         

The KwaZulu-Natal Science Centre has compiled an exciting holiday programme for children. The Perception Deception Holiday Programme is full of fun, educational and interactive activities for visitors of all ages. Entry is R40 and it runs until 6 April in the KZN Science Centre in the Gateway shopping mall. Click here for more information.

  • The People’s Park at the Moses Mabhida Stadium has huge lawns and a play area for children under 12. For older children there are also paved areas for skateboarding and cycling. Entry is free.
  • Go walking in Umhlanga. The Umhlanga Lagoon Nature Reserve offers a half-hour guided walk suitable for those with little legs. Keep your eyes open for the many species such as monkeys and buck to see there. A guided walk costs R30 for adults and R15 for children under 12. Get more information from Umhlanga Tourism

Johannesburg

  • The Johannesburg Planetarium gives you and your kids a chance to explore the universe a little. The planetarium offers a Sky Tonight show (every Friday at 8 pm) and a Space Travel show especially for children between five and eight years old (every Saturday at 10.30 am). Tickets are R25 for children, R38 for adults and R140 for families. Click here for more information.
  • Zoo Lake provides a great day out for you and your kids. There’s plenty of space for picnics, as well as a cycling path. And which kid doesn’t like feeding the ducks?
  • Another great family outing is to go to Bunny Park on the East Rand (near the Lakeside shopping centre in Benoni). There are tame rabbits, donkeys, cows and buck which can be fed by hand. Take your own carrots along or buy them there. Entry is free. Call011-422-3651 for more information.

Good ideas for home activities

If an outing isn’t an option, we’ve got some great ideas for home-based activities. Check these out:

  • Bake with your child. Click here for a great recipe.

    • Dust off the cards for hours of entertainment. Click here for ideas.
    • Get creative with pasta. Click here for ideas about how to get creative.
    • Check out what art supplies you can make with ingredients you have at home.

-Suzaan Hauman

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