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HERITAGE DAY

When is Heritage Day in 2021?

Heritage Day in 2021 is on the Friday, 24th of Sep (9/24/2021).

Heritage Day is on the 267th day of 2021. There are 98 days left in the year.

Heritage Day Facts

  • Date: Sep 24, 2021
  • National
  • Also Called:
  • Celebrations: Public functions, Cultural programs, Braai
Heritage Day iImage Credit: wikiPedia

The "rainbow nation" - South Africa has had a bloody history, but its cultural heritage and traditions date back far further. The 24th September is observed as Heritage Day, a celebration not only of the past, but of the contributions of the South African people in making the country what it is today.

The legendary Zulu king Shaka played a huge role in uniting the disparate tribes of South Africa into a cohesive role, and 24th September was celebrated as Shaka Day in the KwaZulu-Natal area. When the South African parliament was considering the bill of public holiday, this day was not included, leading to protests by the Inkatha Freedom Party, which had large Zulu representation and support. In order to reach a compromise, the date was renamed Heritage Day and included in the bill. Since then, it has evolved parallely into National Braai Day, celebrating the joyful unifying South African tradition of backyard barbeques, known as Braai.

South Africa is a heterogeneous country with so many different tribes, histories, backgrounds and culture, there cannot and should not be a uniform celebration. Variety is defined as a national asset, and the government announces themes each year that guide official celebrations. South Africa defines its heritage as who they are, what they have and how they do things - choosing to embrace diversity, recognizing the rich natural resources and potential of the people, and the collaborative innovative peaceful approach that they bring to everything they do have marked their remarkable rebirth and transition from a pariah state to a stable prosperous growing democracy. Heritage Day was created to celebrate all of this as a unique South African identity, and to give the people a chance to reflect on themselves and their past, present and future.

On this day there is a Presidential address to the nation, and statements are made by important ministers and officials as well. Different regions and tribes commemorate events and people important to them. People are encouraged to learn about their culture, their 5-language national anthem, their flag and other symbols of historic national importance. Various events are held all over the country promoting theatre, dance, comedy, food, wine, games, activities and wildlife. Braai adds another feather to the celebration on the Heritage Day. "Braai is a sociable gathering of five people around a fire cooking food in the healthiest way possible", says the man who started it all, Jan Braai. South Africa has seen terrible struggles, and its reinvention of itself as a new nation rising from the ashes of a bitter past must be celebrated. Heritage Day gives every South African the chance to proudly display and revel in their achievements as a nation, and look forward to a peaceful and prosperous future.

Heritage Day Observances

DAY
DATE
HOLIDAY NAME
  • Thu
  • Sep 24, 2009
  • Fri
  • Sep 24, 2010
  • Sat
  • Sep 24, 2011
  • Mon
  • Sep 24, 2012
  • Tue
  • Sep 24, 2013
  • Wed
  • Sep 24, 2014
  • Thu
  • Sep 24, 2015
  • Sat
  • Sep 24, 2016
  • Sun
  • Sep 24, 2017
  • Mon
  • Sep 24, 2018
  • Tue
  • Sep 24, 2019
  • Thu
  • Sep 24, 2020

List of National and Regional Public Holidays of South Africa in 2020

DAYDATEHOLIDAY
WednesdayWedJan 01, 2020Jan 01New Year's Day
SaturdaySatMar 21, 2020Mar 21Human Rights Day
FridayFriApr 10, 2020Apr 10Good Friday
SundaySunApr 12, 2020Apr 12Easter
MondayMonApr 13, 2020Apr 13Family Day
MondayMonApr 27, 2020Apr 27Freedom Day
FridayFriMay 01, 2020May 01Workers Day
MondayMonMay 25, 2020May 25Africa Day
TuesdayTueJun 16, 2020Jun 16Youth Day
SaturdaySatJul 18, 2020Jul 18Nelson Mandela's Birthday
SundaySunAug 09, 2020Aug 09National Women's Day
MondayMonAug 10, 2020Aug 10Women's Day Holiday
ThursdayThuSep 24, 2020Sep 24Heritage Day
WednesdayWedDec 16, 2020Dec 16Day of Reconciliation
FridayFriDec 25, 2020Dec 25Christmas Day
SaturdaySatDec 26, 2020Dec 26Day of Goodwill