Cape Town - 2016 marks the 350th anniversary birthday of the Castle of Goodhope, South Africa's oldest building.
To celebrate this milestone in a local and fabulous way, each month of 2016 will promote the history of the castle in a unique South African way.
The Castle highlights South Africa's military history as well as its slave history - a site of oppression and colonial expansion as well as exploitation, explains Minister of Defence and Military Veterans, Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula, and to celebrate this milestone of South Africa's oldest building it plans to host a variety of educational programmes, public participation events and exhibitions of rare artefacts.
The Castle emphasises that the anniversary will not be a 'jollification', but an optimistic commemoration with a healing element, focussing on issues such as displaced indigenous people, the role of women in and around the castle and educational nation-building for everyone.
Travellers can look forward to Film festivals, archaeological events, themed cultural festivals, music festivals, Indigenous language classes and workshops and a variety of seminars.
Plan ahead with these 12 commemorations of the Castle of Good Hope during 2016:
15 January – 31 January 2016: Art exhibition of rock art, paintings, poetry sessions and dramatised plays by the iconic Khoi-San / Bushman community.
February 2016 - While International Mother Tongue Day is celebrated on 21 February, the Castle will use the entire month of February to highlight all of South Africa's indigenous languages with a variety of festivals and workshops.
14 - 24 March 2016: A temporary Kraal hopes to set up in the Castle grounds. The Kraal brings livestock to the Castle - allowing more of South African's to identify with the Castle.
April 2016: Freedom month will be highlighted with arts and dramas depicting the lives and times of the various South African leaders held captive at the Castle for all visitors and school groups.
5 - 8 May 2016: The Castle hopes to host the creative Kamers Vol Geskenke (KVG) 350 in its grounds. KVG is a local art fair which showcases young talent and design in one colourful event.
The month of May will also be used to pay tribute to the country's forgotten sports heroes of the past, exhibit memorabilia and artifacts, high-teas and mentoring workshops.
June 2016: For the month of June, the Castle urges the country's youth to write letters and stories about how they view the Castle of Good Hope as a Bastion of colonialism or as a symbol of hope for reconciliation and nation building.
June 16, 2016: On Youth Day, South African youth will enjoy an inclusive event with different youth groups and university societies (free for all under 35).
August 2016: Women's month will be celebrated with workshops dealing with violence and abuse against women and children stemming from slavery.
September 2016: September marks the official opening of the conference centre, boardroom and lounge area and workshop areas in the grounds.
October 2016: The Castle plans host the Cape Town International Flower Show just in time for Spring.
November 2016: The Castle plans to have a unique Summer Concert Series -on a weekly basis, in the front and rear courtyards. Travellers will be able to enjoy a picnics on the lawn and entertainment by local emerging talent.
December 2016: The Castle hopes to host a Military Veterans memorialization event to highlight the veterans of the past, present and future.