Despite the devastating fires that ravaged the region the Pick n Pay Knysna Oyster Festival, taking place from Friday, 7 July 2017 – Sunday, 16 July 2017, is going ahead and aims to assist with the relief efforts in the area through various platforms. The Festival is known to stimulate the Knysna winter economy and firmly places the region on the tourism destination map during the quieter off-season. The Festival is also instrumental in raising meaningful funding for local charities (over R3m in 2016) and for developing and growing local suppliers. These are good reasons for the Festival to take place and an even better reason to invite everyone to Knysna this year.
To illustrate the positive economic impact that the festival brings to Knysna, last year festival goers spent close to R110m over the 10 days of the Festival, excluding event tickets and a total of 2,392 job opportunities were created.
There is truly something for everyone, take a look at just some of the highlights below.
- The exceptionally popular Pick n Pay Seafood Wednesday is back! (Wednesday, 12 July) Top notch restaurants will showcase their best seafood dishes, and once the sun starts to sink towards the horizon the Pick n Pay Fish Braai, Oyster Shucking and Eating Competitions, and the Pick n Pay Flavours of Knysna all get underway. Make sure you don’t miss the heated battle for the ‘Best Fish Braaier in Knysna’, the competition is hot.
- From Lemonade Day to fun children’s cooking activities and over 60 food and wine vendors foodies are sure to be delighted.
- Local establishments have a variety of specials on for the duration of the festival, so come hungry and enjoy the large variety of sumptuous food on offer.
- The Momentum Knysna Cycle Tour (Saturday, 8 July for the MTB and Sunday, 9 July for road race events and the Forest Family Dam Ride) and the Momentum Knysna Forest Marathon and Half Marathon (Saturday, 15 July) are always big draw-cards for sporting enthusiasts and this year will be no different.
- The Big5 Challenge (Saturday, 8 July 2017 – Saturday, 15 July 2017) will be switching things up this year with a new MTB X race added to the list which is sure to have spectators on the edge of their seats as the elite and amateur athletes fight it out over the five courses.
- Pezula hosts the Europcar Knysna Classic (Friday, 14 July) golf tournament, which is always a popular event, book your four-ball now to secure your spot.
- For the less athletically inclined there is the Oyster Rapid Chess Tournament (Saturday, 8 July) and the Knysna Oyster Festival Motorsport Gymkhana (Saturday, 8 July).
For the kids
- If your kid is the active type then why not enter them in the Big5 Junior Challenge (Saturday, 8 – Saturday, 15 July), the Simola Little Phantom Kids Adventure Run (Saturday, 8 July), or the Spur Rotary Knysna Children’s Cycle Tour (Sunday, 9 July).
- The Fun Fair is open for the duration of the Festival and offers thrills for young and hold. The Festival Grounds also have several inflatable fun activities and games taking place throughout the period.
- The Momentum Health Kiddies Area is a fun, secure play area tailored specially for the littlies! The area is supervised by qualified child minders and offers loads of awesome age-appropriate activities to keep the kids entertained and busy. The fun includes, face painting, arts and crafts, jumping castles and loads more. Open to kids from 2 to 12, there is no charge, but children must be checked in by their parents/guardians. To let Moms and Dads enjoy the Festival in the evenings the Kiddies Area will be open until late on some nights – until 21:00 on 10 and 11 July and until 22:00 on 12 and 13 July.
- Take a tour through the Knysna Heads – guided by expert sailors this is an adventure you don’t want to miss, with the swirling waters below you and majestic Knysna Heads around you, it’s a sight to behold.
- Knysna is situated in the heart of the Garden Route National park, surrounding thus visitors with Indigenous Afro Montane forest, and providing great opportunities to explore the area via the beautiful cycling and hiking trails.
- For a different experience get down to Thesen’s Wharf and explore a South African Navy ship, the ship is open for tours between 10:00 and 17:00 each day.
With so much going on this year make sure you don’t miss out on any of the activities, click here for the full programme of events.