Best time to go to South Africa

National Arts Festival 2021

Don't miss one of the greatest cultural events of the African continent—the best occasion to discover current SA performances, music, and art

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Disclaimer: Due to COVID-19 concerns, many events might be canceled, postponed, or changed into limited versions, sometimes at very short notice. Please check with event organizers directly for the latest updates (view the "External Resources" section below).

The National Arts Festival or NAF is known as the largest celebration of African arts, not only in South Africa itself but on the entire continent. It is attended annually by hundreds of thousands from across the world and the host city is Grahamstown in the Eastern Cape Province. Performances are held in over 60 venues, including theatres, schools, and churches. The town is quite compact so it is fairly easy to get around.

Typically, the versatile program features performing arts such as theatre, stand-up comedy, dance and live music, as well as visual art exhibitions, films, workshops, talks, food and craft fairs, and even historical city tours. The main feature of the festival, as organizers claim, is that the art they showcase is modern and responds to current events.

The festival livens up the city of Grahamstown for 11 days from late June to early July.

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