To be fair, revelling under the African sun shouldn’t need reasons, but we’re gonna give them to you anyway.
For the lot of you who don’t already know, AfrikaBurn, taking place this weekend (April 27 to May 3) is Burning Man’s flagship event in the Karoo desert, South Africa. Similar to its mother festival, AfrikaBurn adheres to the ten principles of Burning Man like – leave no trace, philosophy, self-expression, self-reliance, and communal effort. The event has been running from 2007 and aims to be “radically inclusive and accessible to anyone”.
Simply put, the festival is a celebration of creativity, self-expression, community
(and some weird sex stuff.)
1. The experience of ‘gifting’
For about a week, the Karoo desert is home to thousands of nomads, to whom money and status mean nothing. Instead, what you’ll experience will be like nothing you have before – the gifting economy. At AfrikaBurn you will be blown away by the generosity of strangers and their unconditional gifts of food, jewellery, messages and even Beer.
Protip : Isn’t that all the more reason for you to participate in the gifting culture? Don’t shy away
2. The Art
The art and art installations at AfrikaBurn are an integral part of the gifting culture, as some would they are ‘gifts’ to the festival and community, created by the community. Judging for the art that we’ve seen, a lot of work and raw creativity is the foundation of every piece. Mind you, there is a significance to every piece and a story to tell, that which is left up to the viewer to figure out.
Protip : Think of AfrikaBurn as a giant art gallery.
3. The fire spectacles
Fire is an important element of the AfrikaBurn experience, where you will witness beautiful art and installations being set ablaze towards the end of the event. The ‘burning’ symbolises a sort of catharsis and can therefore be quite therapeutic.
4. The vibrant theme camps
Theme camps are like the marketplace of the festival. Except, you can’t buy or sell anything. From chill out zones, food stalls, cocktail bars, stages, a swimming pool and even a post office, the 100 theme camps form a unique component of AfrikaBurn.
Protip : Set up your own tent at one of the theme camps
5. Social interaction is the backbone of this festival
Tankwa City is like a parallel universe where the life is all about experiencing new things and where the people are genuinely nice. The lack of cellular service or the Internet in the city really pushes people to make real conversation, make eye contact and enjoy a natural atmosphere of social interaction. It may be weird on the first day, but by the last you’ll be doing the same.
Protip : Random hugs are the best conversation starter.
6. The wacky costumes
This one needs no explanation.
Protip : Go crazy
7. The African sky
The Karoo desert’s legendary sunsets and equally stunning starry nights, will be the highlight of your AfrikaBurn experience, we assure you.
Protip: Don’t fall asleep.
(Image Courtesy : all-that-is-interesting.com/love-week-volume-l/afrika-burn-night)