Braai Baby, Braai

It’s official Braai Day on September 24th, when all South Africans come together and do what they do best: braai. Carla Lewis-Balden recommends a few places where you can enjoy a tjop or boerie with a view.

Typical South African Braai with Boerewors


Durbanites are better known for their fragrant curries than their braai skills, but Braai Day is the ideal opportunity to have the best of both worlds.

Take a trip to Inanda Dam and Resort, situated on the Inanda Dam in the Valley of a Thousand Hills below Hillcrest in KwaZulu Natal. Braai and picnic sites are available. (Tel (031) 765 7724; Web:

Eat this: Put a classic spin on the bunny chow and turn it into a braai bunny. It’s basically the same concept as a braaibroodjie, but instead of using cheese and tomato, you use the curry of your choice, slap it between two thick pieces of white bread and grill it over the fire. Serve with a dollop of homemade raita, made from greek yogurt, chopped mint and cucumber.

Eastern Cape

The Transkei’s beaches beg for bonfires, guitar singalongs and crusty travellers crooning along to Jack Johnson. You can also buy local fish here from the fishermen and if you give them R20 extra, get them to gut and clean it as well.

Buccaneers in Cintsa is spread over 8 hectares of wild coastal forest and is located next to the Cintsa beach, the ideal place to get your braai vibes on. (Tel: 043 734 3012, Web:

Eat this: Build a fire right on the beach, wrap your freshly caught fish in some tinfoil, with salt and pepper and finish it off with a can of chakalaka.

Family Beach Barbeque

Western Cape

It’s the fairest Cape, so a person can hardly move without tripping over a berg with a view. If you want to beat the crowds and see some flowers, head to the West Coast and have a snoek braai.

Tsaarsbank is situated in the West Coast National Park near the Postberg section, south-west of Plankiesbaai and has a great picnic spot, with braai facilities and views of the Atlantic Ocean. Bring a ice bucket, a dry Sauvignon Blanc (OBiKWA’s SB is a bargain at only R28 a bottle) and have a braai that is sort of on the rocks. (Tel: 022 772 2144; Web:

Eat this: Like the Afrikaans saying goes: Snoekbraai en die Weskus gaan saam soos boude. All you need is apricot jam, some salt, pepper and lemon juice, and you are good to go.

Northern Cape

It’s dusk at the Bitterpan camp in the Kgalagadi. Lions are calling in the distance and towers of cumulus omnibus clouds are gathering in the distance, getting ready for those tempestuous Kalahari thunderstorms. You’re standing on the stoep of your self-catering unit, a cold beer in your hand and a dozen lamb chops are sizzling over the fire. Life does not get better than this. (Tel: 012 428 9111, Web:

Eat this: The Northern Cape is renowned for it’s excellent lamb, but you can’t go wrong with any type of meat. Keep it simple with lamb chops on the fire, with a dash of sea salt and rosemary seasoning.

Sizzling Braai Meat


Now is the time to make friends with somebody in Jozi who lives in a block of flats in the CBD and has access to an amazing rooftop. Joburgers may get exposed to more smog and pollution, but there is one perk; spectacular sunsets. There is no better place to enjoy the pyrotechnics of a Jozi-sunset reflecting off the skyscrapers, than on one of the rooftops of a block of apartments in the inner city. The Ashanti/Dogon Apartments in Anderson Street in the CBD has one of the best views of the Jozi-skyline, with a swimming pool.

Eat this: Nothing says spring like the fatty smell of boerewors grilling on the fire. Impress your inner-city hipster friends with gourmet boeries, which is rivalling the popularity of gourmet burgers. Instead of the normal toppings like tomato or sheba sauce, make a red onion relish, top it with a grated matured cheddar and rocket leaves.

North West

How about braaing in a place that was hit by a meteor 2023 million years ago? There are several camping sites and resorts in the Vredefort Dome, the central part of the impact crater where you can braai blissfully and contemplate the chaos the meteorite caused eons ago.

The Suikerbos Resort, just outside of Potchefstroom has self-catering and camping options, with decent braai facilities. (Tel: 018 294-3867, Web:

Eat this: Throw a piece of fillet on the braai and finish it of with a shot of brandy a la steak flambe, to recreate the fire of the meteor impact.

Free State

Do you get excited by rolling mountains and imposing sandstone formations? The Golden Gate National Park is located on the foothills of the Maluti’s and the perfect place to spend Braai Day this September. Visitors have a choice of camping, self catering chalets or if you want to glam it up, you can stay in the hotel. (Tel: 012 428 9111, Web:

Eat this: You get some excellent venison up in the Eastern Free State, which has an abundance of game farms. Ask around the bigger towns, like Bethlehem or Clarens, someone is bound to refer you to a butchery that sells some tasty springbok loins or kudu steaks.


South Africans experience something spiritual when they are building a fire in the bush. At the Singo Safari Lodge, perched on a cliff overlooking the banks of the Luvuvhu River, you can get in touch with your African roots while braaing up a storm. The units overlook a baobab forest and the bushveld. (Tel: 015 293 3600 Web:

Eat this: With a view like this, you can bring out the big guns and do a big mixed grill. Bring on the tjops, wors, rump steak and for a little fibre you can also throw a mealie on the grill. Salad is optional.


Few things beat a bush brunch or breakfast in the Kruger National Park; Onder-Sabie, Skukuza and Berg and Dal is just some of the rest camps where you can cook up a storm on your Cadac-skottel. (Tel: 012 428 9111, Web:

Eat this: Start with the bacon and breakfast sausages, follow it up with some mushrooms and fried tomatoes and last, give those eggs a good scramble. Just watch out for those pesky yellow billed kites, which are known to snatch a piece of bacon or wors from the skottel.

Follow Carla Lewis-Balden on twitter @carlalewisb

Our Readers Comments

  1. Mouth watering!!!!!!!! Yummy foods.

  2. You have just made me hungry.

  3. rapelle de bon souvenirs n’ai jamais trouver des saucisses aussi délicieuses

  4. Heritage Day – 24th September

    Braai Like a South African, Eat Like a King.

    When you think about Heritage Day what comes to mind? You would be forgiven for feeling a little flustered in your explanation. Unsurprisingly, this South African public holiday comes with a little story.

    Not originally intended to be a public holiday, King Shaka Day had been left off of the newly elected governments Public Holiday’s Bill, leaving an unpleasant taste in the mouths of South Africa’s largest tribe. The Zulus. With this omission the Inkata Freedom Party refused to sign the Bill as their most famous Zulu King Shaka was not being remembered with the respect he commanded. Without their signature on the bill it would fail and so after a period of negotiation Heritage Day was born. It represents not only the mighty King Shaka but also the celebration of the rich cultural heritage and diversity that makes South Africa such a vibrant nation.

    Former South African President Nelson Mandela had this to say on Heritage Day 2007: “When our first democratically-elected government decided to make Heritage Day one of our national days, we did so because we knew that our rich and varied cultural heritage has a profound power to help build our new nation”.
    “But what has this got to do with braais?” we hear you say?

    Typically in South Africa, everything!

    In 2005 and in the vein of celebrating shared culture rather than focusing on cultural divisions, an initiative by Braai4Heritage and Jan Braai called upon all South Africans to celebrate their common roots by having a braai (barbeque) on Heritage day. The idea blossomed and today there are more braais on this day than any other. This year Castle Lager are actually going to try break the current world record (see below).

    Over time there have been some really high profile converts who enjoy the ongoing celebration but none more than one of South Africa’s favourite sons, Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu, who in 2007 was made the National Spokesperson for “Braai Day.”
    So why not chuck some charcoal and meat into your car, round up your family, friends and associates and have a braai to celebrate our rainbow nation?

    To find out more about “Braai Day” visit

    South Africa will be bustling with local festivals, events and braais so we recommend checking with your local press for events. We have listed a few of our favourites, so take a look if they are in your area.

    Western Cape | Cape Town – Newlands Forrest
    What better way to char those steaks than being surrounded by some of South Africa’s most Jurassic pine trees? Conveniently located on the southern side of Table Mountain you will have plenty of time to kick back while the kids run a-muck. If you really feel up to it why not bring the mountain bikes and work up an appetite on some of the amazing trails?

    Entrance is R30 for up to six people and R10 per person thereafter. Mountain Biking is free. For more information contact Newlands Forrest on 021 422 1601/2.

    Limpopo | Magoebaskloof Spring Festival
    The Magoebaskloof Spring Fair in September is a laid-back affair. Visit a choice of local gardens on show, browse through craft markets, go picnicking or rambling in the forests, set sail on a sunset cruise. The markets are held in the village hall and nearby hotel and sell a range of crafts, textiles and furniture.

    One of the highlights of the Spring Fair is the exhibition of orchids. These delicate and exquisite plants never fail to bring oohs and aahs from visitors. But let’s not forget the fair is not only about the flowers. The local vicinity includes: hiking, mountain climbing, outdoor sports, bands, pubs, dancing, walks and so much more. We recommend booking in advance as the local accommodation is usually sold out when the fair starts.

    The event runs from the 21st – 29th September leaving Heritage Day slap bang in the middle of this fun filled extravaganza. You might be forgiven for not braaing as there really is something for everyone.

    Castle Lager Braai Nation – Braai World Record Attempt

    Get yourself and your crew to a Castle Lager braai event on Heritage Day, 24 September 2013, and help them break the world record for the most people braaing at the same time. The event is being held in 6 cities across South Africa and includes live music, bars and facilities to bring your own food, braai equipment and soft drinks.
    The events will take place in: Cape Town, Durban, East London, Johannesburg and Port Elizabeth. So why not be part of something huge and help a nation break a world record!

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