We all know that Makhanda can get colder than a polar bear’s toenails during Festival, especially at night, but the days can get quite warm so you’ll need layers to peel back as you thaw out in the sun. So the million dollar question – what to pack for NAF?

We asked some Festival veterans and our Facebook arts community NAFSuperfans what they would put at the top of the list for their travel bags. We got quite a selection, but these were some of the most popular ones:

  • Coats! Whether it’s a puffer, an anorak, a vintage wool, a shaggy fleece, a perky parka or a faux fur, you are going to need one. If you don’t have one, make a beeline for the stall on Church Street and the highly affordable vintage style coats for sale there.
  • Beanies, berets or balaclavas. They say heat escapes the body from the head so cover that up and you’ll feel the warmth. They’re perfect for hiding “Festival hair” – and people will be able to see past you in theatres.
  • Gloves. Always a good idea on the icy Festival nights and the fingerless ones are great for digging around for your tickets.
  • Timberland boots were a favourite and we reckon any boots and warm socks are a must-have. Make sure you’ve worn them in because you’re likely to do a lot of walking around our town. They might cost a little more but the mohair socks at the Standard Bank Village Green really do the job when it comes to warming up those toes.
  • Some people bring their favourite winter-time accessories – from hot water bottles to electric blankets – we say why not?
  • Shawls or small blankets. Be the envy of your fellow audience members when you throw your blankkie over your lap during a long show. A small cushion can also make your theatre visits more comfortable. Next level is spectator cushion with a carry handle!
  • Onsie. Why pack PJs and a gown when you can do it all in a onesie? Pop on the hood for extra fuzzy dreams.
  • We also hear that blanket dresses, thick wool stockings and thermal underwear is the way to go.
  • If you are still chilly, head for the body heat and convivial atmosphere of Makhanda’s restaurants and bars. A hot chocolate, glass of red wine and something to eat and you’ll be peeling back the layers!
  • And do pack a few T-shirts and other items for hot weather. There’s always that hot day and you won’t want to be bubbling away in your woollens.
  • Bring along a sturdy tote bag (big enough to take the NAF programme); a notebook and pen to keep track of your must-see shows; your cellphone with the NAF app downloaded (don’t forget a charger and a double adapter); and a water bottle to refill to keep you nicely hydrated. Your mom will tell you to bring along an umbrella too.

TOP TIP – Leave space in your bag for some Village Green shopping!

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