The Bay Harbour Market
A popular market in what is fondly referred to as “The Republic of Hout Bay” in Cape Town, the Bay Harbour Market offers a selection of food stalls, crafts and curios, and live music on the weekend. Open until 9pm on Friday evenings, it’s the perfect place to ease into the weekend, craft beer in hand.
Where: 31 Harbour Road, Hout Bay, Cape Town
27 Boxes Night Market
A “destination with a difference”, the 27 Boxes Night Market allows you to browse through food and retail stalls, to the background of live music. Perfect for visitors to the city, vendors come from throughout Johannesburg to showcase their wares. Family- and dog-friendly.
Where: 76 4th Avenue, Melville, Johannesburg
Home to over 400 retail stores, Canal Walk Shopping Centre is open from 9am to 9pm daily. Catering for everything from basic grocery needs to niche fashion stores and movies, it’s a convenient option when, at 8pm, you realise you're missing a core ingredient for dinner, or need to buy an emergency birthday present.
Where: Canal Walk Shopping Centre, Century Boulevard, Century City, Cape Town.
Sandton City has more than 300 retailers, including international brands such as Louis Vuitton, Apple and Hugo Boss. Described as one of the continent’s most prestigious shopping centres, you’re able to indulge in your love of all things luxe until 8pm, Monday to Saturday.
Where: Sandton City, Sandton Drive, Sandton, Johannesburg
I Love Big Bay Market
A food and craft market along the beachfront, the I Love Big Bay Market sees food trucks and stalls come together with over 30 craft and clothing vendors, from 4pm to 9pm on the last Wednesday of the month. Grab something to eat, browse a little and enjoy the sunset with that iconic view of Table Mountain in the distance.
Where: Big Bay, Blouberg, Cape Town
Market On Main
Joining the First Thursdays movement, the Market on Main is open until 11pm on the first Thursday of every month – with their more arts-focused market taking place from 10pm to 3pm every Sunday. Fine food meets great design in Maboneng.
Where: 264 Fox Street, Maboneng Precinct, Johannesburg.
Said to be the most popular tourist attraction in the southern hemisphere, the V&A Waterfront is also an expansive shopping centre with over 450 retail outlets. Open from 9am to 9pm every day of the week, it’s always a bustling hub of activity – with locals and tourists alike.
Where: V&A Waterfront, Dock Road, Cape Town
Musgrave Roof Top Night Market
Offering the market trifecta of food, crafts and live music, the Musgrave Roof Top Night Market takes place on the first Friday of every month, atop Musgrave Centre.
Where: 115 Musgrave Road, Musgrave, Durban
V&A Food Market
Right outside the V&A Waterfront, this permanent food market is dedicated to all things delicious. Open until 7pm or 9pm, depending on the season, you’ll find craft beer, artisan ice cream, an assortment of Cape Malay delights, fresh spices, South American empanadas and more.
Where: V&A Food Market, Dock Road, Cape Town
Blue Bird Garage Food and Goods Market
Located in the quirky seaside suburb of Muizenberg, the Blue Bird Garage Food and Goods Market takes place every Friday, from 4pm to 10pm. Situated in an old postal plane hangar, the market brings together the butcher, baker and more, under one eclectic roof. Priding itself on being particularly welcoming, why not end your week down south?
Where: 39 Albertyn Road, Muizenberg, Cape Town
By Candice Bresler
This specialist mega toy store (yes, mega) stocks everything your child would ever dream of playing with. In the boy's zone is an array of cars and action figures. Meanwhile, doll houses and karaoke sets can be found in the girl's zone. They also have a family zone and cyber zone with board games, TV and computer games, puzzles and so much more. They have numerous stores in Gauteng. Click here to find your nearest store.
The Toy Factory Shop, as the name suggests, is a factory shop fully dedicated to the play needs of little ones. Branded toys from Barbie to Ben 10 and Disney can be found here. Not to mention a huge variety of iPod docks and electric scooters. They really have everything a youngster could want and it’s all far cheaper than commercial toy shops. The owner further assures us that the products are not damaged or imperfect in any way. The stock is all end-of-range and new. This means you get great toys at a considerably better price. You can thank us later.
Polly Potter's is a family fun business. Their toys are divided into age, gender, pretend play, arts and crafts, educational, puzzles, wooden toys, wheels and other. This way you are given a range that caters to your kids' specific toy needs. Polly Potter's also offers online shopping for your convenience.
Toys R Us, well-known and trusted retailer available nationwide, offers a wide range of toy options in their different categories. They also frequently post hot deals and specials on their website. Be prepared, your kids won't want to leave the store once inside.
Babies R Us is a division of Toys R Us, which specialises in merchandise and toys for babies and toddlers. You get everything from walkers and strollers, to soft rattle toys and wooden building blocks – just in case you have a little architect on your hands.
Founded by William Hamley in 1760, Hamleys has a reputation for delivering only the finest quality toys for kids. Their stores are a child's paradise, offering wish fulfillment deluxe. The store is also well known internationally and its branches in South Africa can be found in Johannesburg and Cape Town. Splurge on your kids in this wonderland.
Toy Kindgom describe their stores as fantasy wonderlands. With every item your prince and princess could ever want under their roof, they're exactly that. Take a browse through Baby Boulevard (with items for 0–24-month-old's), girls and boys sections, Lego Lane, Barbie House, Princess Place and Soldier Street. Every one of their five stores is unique. We encourage you to visit each spot to find the one you – and your little one – love most.
What started as a small family-run store in 2009 selling only Lego, has now grown into three well-loved toy stores in Pretoria and Centurion. Toy Adventures' focus is on quality toys that give good value for money. They stokc all major brands including Lego, Playmobil, Top Model, Burago and many more. They’ve since expanded into e-commerce, stocking over 6000 products. Check out their online store, as they offer free door-to-door delivery for orders over R499. Find them at Byls Bridge Promenade in Centurion, and Grove Mall and Irene Village Mall in Pretoria.
Remember that our "Top Picks" are not paid for and are compiled at the discretion of the journalist. We only write about what we love.