Budget-friendly family Easter weekend getaways: Part 1

Take a look at what holiday family fun the Free State, Gauteng and North West have to offer.

No plans for the Easter weekend yet? We’ve got you covered with a three-part series of articles featuring some of the top, must-visit, family-friendly holiday destinations and activities all over SA.

Before you hit the road, make sure to plan your route well, including safe rest stops to ensure that you don’t drive for too long without a break. Right, ready? With a little help from our friends at Tracker, we’ve got a list of unique, interesting activities and destinations starting inland with these three provinces: The Free State, Gauteng and North West. 

The Free State

  • Bloemfontein is nicknamed “The City of Roses” for its abundance of roses. It is also the judicial capital of South Africa that has a plethora of museums and cultural attractions. The National Museum which was established in 1977 invites you to discover the natural, cultural and art history of South Africa. If you want to spend some time outdoors, your best bet is to explore the many beautiful plants at the Free State National Botanical Garden.
  • Basotho Cultural Village: Set in the Qwaqwa National Park, the Basotho Cultural Village depicts South Sotho lifestyle from the 16th century to the present. As a visitor, you will be guided through the village to experience the Sotho way of life. Take a journey through four centuries of Basotho history, culture and tradition.
  • Treat your inner bookworm with a visit to the cutest independent book store, Bibliofile in Clarens. It will allow you a relaxed atmosphere to browse, and the pretty red corrugated iron building makes for a lovely Instagram moment.



  • Get your game on at an arcade: A fun way to embrace your competitive spirit and cost-effective too, with certain games costing as little as R5. We can suggest The Fun Company in Menlyn, Pretoria.
  • A game drive: If you are fortunate enough to live close to a nature or game reserve, consider making a day of it. The Lion Safari Park just outside of Johannesburg offers the option of a guided drive or self-drive with senior citizens receiving a 50% discount and kids under 12 can enter for free.
  • Picnics: Many parks and picnic locations have a small or no entry fees, so gather your friends and family, pack a cooler box and remember your picnic blanket to take advantage of the warm weather and enjoy a meal al fresco. TIP: The Walter Sisulu Botanical Gardens in Gauteng.
  • Local landmarks: How often have we heard about an interesting landmark a short drive away but never visited? Now is the time to jump in your car and head out to places like the Upside-Down House in Hartbeespoort – the perfect backdrop to snap some TikTok videos!


North West

  • Pilanesberg Game Drive: A short drive from Rustenburg takes you to the Pilanesberg National Park. It’s perfect for a day outing or camping overnight in the Manyane Resort within the park. Expect to see rhino and elephants on your morning and afternoon game drives.
  • Local markets: Over the holiday period, many communities gather to host gift fairs, pottery markets and outdoor concerts. They are a lovely way to spend a morning browsing for locally made gifts before discovering a new spot for lunch close by.

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