Africa is known to investors and business men as an emerging market with plenty of room for developments. For tourists however, Africa is known as a hub for several cultural and historical festivals. If you intend on travelling to the great continent anytime soon, we highlight amazing cultural festivals and the typical period and location in which they are held in order to ensure that you do not miss out on the heritage of Africa on your trip.
Marula Festival – Swaziland
The Marula festival is a popular festival in the republic of Swaziland. The festival marks the harvesting of the Marula beer by women and children of the city. It is believed that the beer is a beer fit for kings and therefore the King and the Queen Mother are presented with the first harvested fruit from every household after which other inhabitants of the city can then drink their harvest. The festival begins in mid-February and is celebrated at the residence of the King at Hlane in the Lubombo Region of Swaziland. It is known by the locals as Emagawini.
Oppikoppi festival – South Africa
Oppikoppi is a word derived from the Afrikaan language “Op die koppi” and it means on the hill. It is a music festival founded in 1994. The festival is a very popular festival in the country and averages about 20000 attendees at every festival. The festival comprises different brands of music such as jazz, hip hop, soul etc with the South African flavour added to it. The festival is typically held in August of every year. This is definitely one festival we recommend to tourist visiting South Africa.
Chizangala – Gule wamkulu – Malawi
The Chizangala festival is held in Malawi in the East of Africa. The festival is usually carried out at important events such as puberty initiations, funerals of village members, coronation of chiefs amongst other important events. Unfortunately, this festival doesn’t have a particular period in the year in which it is carried out. It is usually performed at the behest of the village headsman. If you happen to be in the country at a time when the festival is ongoing, you must definitely stop by to have a taste of a beautiful African festival.
Umojafest – Mozambique
A festival that denotes the unity that transpires across the country. The name of the festival in itself means unity festival. The striking advantage of this festival is in its ability to unite people of different ethnic backgrounds, age, social strata etc. Events that typically occur on the day of the festival include African Heritage Parade, Children’s Day, African Drum & Dance, Jazz, Soul, Reggae, Spoken Word & Poetry, Hip-Hop Fest, Basketball Tournament, Fitness Demonstrations, Gospel Fest, Voter Registration, Vendor Marketplace & Community Resource Fair.
Sauti za Busara Festival – Zanzibar
The archipelago of Zanzibar off the coast of Tanzania has become known as a favorite tourist destination for African tourists. One festival that definitely cuts it in this part of the continent is the Sauti za Busara (Sounds of Wisdom) Festival. It has been touted as the friendliest festival in Eastern African and has received several rave reviews from visitors.