Home About South Africa Culture & History South African public holidays 2019 and important South African holidays
Last update on August 21, 2019

Whether you’re just visiting or living in South Africa, it’s important to note the main public holidays in South Africa as many businesses typically close.

There are 12 annual South African public holidays as determined by the Public Holidays Act. When holidays in South Africa fall on a Sunday, the following Monday is typically given as a South African public holiday.

Here is a list of public holidays in South Africa in 2019 (or bank holidays in South Africa) plus other important South African holidays, such as school holidays in South Africa.

Public holidays South Africa in 2019

  • Tuesday, 1 January: New Year’s Day
  • Thursday, 21 March: Human Rights Day
  • Friday, 19 April: Good Friday
  • Monday, 22 April: Family Day
  • Saturday, 27 April: Freedom Day
  • Wednesday, 1 May: Workers Day
  • Sunday, 16 June: Youth Day – observed on Monday, 17 June
  • Friday, 9 August: National Women’s Day
  • Tuesday, 24 September: Heritage Day
  • Monday, 16 December: Day of Reconciliation
  • Wednesday, 25 December: Christmas Day
  • Thursday, 26 December: Day of Goodwill

Important South African holidays

  • Sunday, 12 May: Mother’s Day
  • Sunday, 16 June: Father’s Day
  • Thursday, 18 July: Nelson Mandela Day – events run throughout July
  • There are no daylight saving time changes in South Africa; the clock remains the same throughout the year.

South African school holidays

See our guide to school holidays in South Africa.

You can also view a list of other celebrations in South Africa in Expatica’s guide to festivals in South Africa.