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Popular South African TV Shows to Help You Learn Afrikaans!

Imagine a weekend on the sofa after a tiring work week, bowls filled with freshly popped popcorn, and a popular African TV show to binge-watch… There, you have all the elements of leisure! Also, you get to freshen up on your Afrikaans in an easy and fun way, which is exactly how we like it at AfrikaansPod101!

It may be difficult to find many African TV shows on Netflix or African series on YouTube. We recommend that you look at subscribing to Showmax, a Netflix equivalent, to watch Afrikaans TV shows online. You can also look for places to download Afrikaans TV shows or other Afrikaans TV series downloads.

Two Women Watching TV with Popcorn

How Does Watching South African TV Shows Help When Learning Afrikaans?

  • Firstly, watching TV shows and movies in the language you’re learning is an entertaining way to get used to how it’s spoken by native speakers.
  • Not only are you exposed to different accents and nuances such as inflection, but you also get to observe the actors’ facial and lip movements—all elements that prime your mind for easy learning!
  • In addition, you get to learn about South African culture, its people, and some of the most breathtaking scenery in the world.

Here, we list some popular South African TV shows and other Afrikaans television series to choose from. Enjoy!

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Table of Contents

  1. Reality and Lifestyle Shows
  2. Soapies, Telenovelas, and Dramas
  3. Comedies
  4. Mystery and Suspense
  5. How Can AfrikaansPod101 help you to learn Afrikaans Faster?

1. Reality South African TV Shows and Lifestyle Shows

1- Boer Soek ‘n Vrou

Translation: Farmer Looks for a Wife

Farmer in Field in Front of Machine

By far the most popular reality show still running on South African TV, Boer Soek ‘n Vrou brings successful bachelor or bachelorette farmers, and single, aspiring farm-wives or husbands together.

The dating reality show is usually hosted by a friendly, gorgeous lady who introduces ten bachelor (or bachelorette) farmers to the country every season. Viewers then get to write to the participants to introduce themselves and send photos. A meeting is arranged and, well, Cupid’s arrow does (or doesn’t) hit the mark.

Many matches were made over the years, with several enduring marriages to boot. Yet, one couple’s story stands out. In 2014, an older, single farmer captivated the nation’s heart with her sad, courageous story. Lize Cooper’s husband had died in 2012, followed only four months later by her twenty-year-old son.

Two years later, she decided to give the dating reality show a try in a bid to find love and happiness again. She didn’t have much hope, though, and later confessed that she didn’t think she would receive a single letter.

She was wrong. There were plenty of interested men.

However, her luck wasn’t to be found among the gentlemen who made it onto the show. Rather, it was a viewer. Hardie Meyer, a gentle-hearted farmer, saw her on TV one evening. Afterwards, he couldn’t stop staring at her photo in one of the local participating magazines. But he couldn’t muster the courage to write her a letter. Ek is nie een vir die kollig nie (”I am not one for the spotlight“), he explained later.

But their story was meant to be. It turned out that one of Lize’s family members knew one of Hardie’s family members, and these two arranged a meeting. During a coffee date, Lize and Hardie immediately felt chemistry. They fell in love, got married two months after meeting (Lize’s episode aired when she was already married!), and now their children manage their respective farms while they supervise, travel, and enjoy one another’s company.

Says Lize: My lewe het letterlik verander van trane na lag. Dis ‘n wonderlike ding wat mens vir niemand kan beskryf nie.

Translation: “My life literally changed from tears to laughter, and it’s a wonderful thing you can’t describe to anyone.”

This Afrikaans television series is sure to pull on your heart strings!

2- Jan Braai vir Erfenis

Translation: John Barbeques for Heritage

img src=”https://wordlist.languagepod101.com/wordlist/media/16768&v=medium.jpg” alt=”Barbeque.” />

If you’re a foodie learning Afrikaans, this is a South African TV show not to miss.

Jan Braai’s real name is Jan Scannell, and he travels the country chasing barbeque recipes and techniques, as well as gorgeous picnic spots to share with the country’s viewers. Barbequing, or braai-ing as it’s locally known, is one of South Africa’s favorite cooking methods. Jan is the creator and host of this exceedingly popular series, and is even credited as the founder of the National Braai Day on September 24 each year.

He has since written two recipe books, both instant best-sellers.

Favorite quote: Ek sê nog altyd, jy kan enige ding braai, en enigiets smaak beter as jy dit oor die kole voorberei het.

Translation: “I always say that you can barbeque anything, and anything tastes better when you prepare it over a fire.”

Another must-watch for foodies is the Edik Van Nantes series by local celeb comedian, singer, writer, cook, and business person, Nataniël.

3- Edik Van Nantes

Translation: Vinegar from Nantes (also a word-play on Edict of Nantes)

Fresh Fish with Oil or Vinegar Pouring

Nataniël is one of South Africa’s best-known celebrities, popular for his acerbic wit, his music, and his excellent taste in food. His signature look reminds one strongly of Uncle Fester of the famed Addams Family film series.

His love of good food was born in his grandmother’s kitchen. Later, this culinary passion was fueled “by his friendships with several South African food personalities and favourite chefs.” His cooking and entertainment skills have since become known and loved by the country, which resulted in a radio show, another cooking show called Die Nataniël Tafel (The Nataniël Table) and currently, Die Edik van Nantes.

In this series, he co-hosts with his brother and confidante Erik Le Roux, and the two share food secrets, traditions, recipes, and history native to Nantes in France.

Explaining his shows, Nataniël quips: Dis rerig alles oor goeie produkte, goeie geselskap en ‘n bietjie verbeelding.

Translation: “It really is about good produce, good company, and a bit of imagination.”

But eating too much of anything delicious is bound to pile on unwanted kilos (or pounds). For this, South African TV has a solution too…enter Slank, a series about health and weight loss.

4- Slank

Translation: Slender

Woman's Waist with Measuring Tape

This thirteen-episode Afrikaans TV show is a lifestyle documentary series aimed at helping and motivating wanna-be weight-losers who’ve tried everything under the sun to lose weight. Hosted by South African actress Leandie Du Randt, you could garner many a health- and weight-loss tip in Afrikaans.

The series boasts the Slender Wonder weight loss program that’s touted to be very successful. It follows the participants over a period of four months on their kilo-shedding journey.

Elize Ras, a contestant who lost almost fifty kilograms on the show, says: Oor die jare het ek talle diëte beproef, maar ja, soos hulle sê, ‘n ‘quick fix’ bestaan nie.

Translation: “Over the years, I tried many diets, but yes, as they say, a quick fix doesn’t exist.”

And once you’re slim, you can learn to be beautiful too on a popular Afrikaans TV show: Glam Guru.

5- Glam Guru

Woman Putting Makeup on a Model's Face

Despite its English name, Glam Guru is presented in Afrikaans by native speaker Hannon Bothma. Hannon used to own a hair and beauty salon. He created a series of exclusive hair products, and proceeded to turn himself and his brand into big business.

His claim to fame is in his ability to help any woman to become a beauty princess, using tips and tricks from the entertainment and performance industry.

Hannon isn’t all about the outside. Once a week, he donates time to charities across the country in the form of image workshops and makeover shows.

Favorite quote: As jy nie kan gee nie, kan jy nie ontvang nie.

Translation: “If you can’t give, you can’t receive.”

Binging on reality shows can become a bit tedious, so why not indulge in some escapism with the best of South African soapies?

2. Soapies, Telenovelas & Drama South African TV Shows

Would you prefer to watch soap opera South African TV shows? There are plenty of binge-worthy soapies and dramas on South African TV. Let’s start with the most popular ones.

6- Binnelanders

Translation: People from Inland

Doctors Around Operating Table in Theater

If series like Grey’s Anatomy, The Good Doctor, House, and Scrubs keep you nailed in front of the box, this is one of the Afrikaans TV shows not to miss.

Binnelanders is the story of the medical staff in a fictitious private clinic called Binneland, which takes place in Pretoria, the capital city of South Africa. The series sports some of the best-known actors and actresses in the country, and has enthralled audiences for over thirteen years already.

Erik Holm, paraplegic after a car accident in 2007, is a hugely popular actor and comedian in South Africa. He plays recurring roles as a disabled character, Rian Malherbe, in the TV series. He’s also an advocate for the country’s disabled community.

Here’s a favorite quote by Karen Meiring, director of kykNET TV channels: Binnelanders verander mense se lewens terwyl hulle dit kyk op ‘n daaglikse basis.

Translation: “On a daily basis, Binnelanders changes people’s lives while they’re watching it in their living rooms.”

7- Getroud Met Rugby

Translation: Married to Rugby

Sport Stadium with Crowd and Lights

Some say the sport rugby is the Afrikaans people’s religion. In general, most of them are very passionate about this sport, and support it religiously.

Previously a drama series, Getroud met Rugby is now a soapie and is aired every weekday. Before its premiere in 2009, it was marketed as the Afrikaans version of the UK’s Footballers’ Wives.

Hugely popular, it tells the story of three professional rugby players and their families. This soapie will teach you a lot about upper-middle-class Afrikaans culture and communities.

3. Comedies

South Africans love to laugh, and are quite fond of making fun of themselves. Their comedies are full of sketches joking with, well, everyone and everything in South Africa!

8- Ouboet & Wors

Translation: Older Bro and Sausage

People Laughing in a Theater

Ouboet & Wors is a South African TV series based on characters from other much-loved and popular TV series. The title roles are played by veteran South African comedians, Frank Opperman and Willie Esterhuizen, and all the characters in the series are modern business owners.

Fun slapstick with a heart.

Referring to the characters, Willie Esterhuizen said: Hulle pas by mekaar soos legkaartstukke.

Translation: “They fit together like a puzzle.”

Willie wrote, directed, and also starred in the series.

9- Molly en Wors

Translation: Molly and Sausage

Entwined Feet

Yes, it’s the same Wors from Ouboet & Wors! Gain some context and understanding of the previously-discussed show by watching this Afrikaans drama series first.

The popular comedy TV series deals with the lives of the slightly dysfunctional Visagie family of four: Wors, Molly, their oldest son Vaatjie, and their daughter Blapsie. (Blapsie literally means “small mistake” in Afrikaans.)

Vaatjie is studying at the local cooking school to become a chef, and Blapsie, in her final year of school, is spending more time with her boyfriend than in front of the books. This show is relatable and funny, if slapstick is your thing.

Favorite quote from Wors: Dis ‘n man se prerogatief om ‘n ou wit leuntjie te vertel om sy vrou se gevoelens te beskerm.

Translation: “It’s a husband’s prerogative to tell a little white lie to protect his wife’s feelings.”

4. Mystery and Suspense

Perhaps you have a taste for something a bit edgier? Nothing better than a good crime series.

10- Die Boland Moorde

Translation: The Boland Murders

Hooded Man Pointing Gun

Treat yourself to some nail-biting fun with this award-nominated series. Center-stage are, of course, Lieutenants André Fourie and Shane Williams, who get to unravel heinous crimes and catch numerous criminals against the backdrop of one of the country’s most beautiful regions: the Boland.

Every episode is approximately ninety minutes long, and the format is based on British whodunnits, like Midsummer Murders, Vera, and Lewis.

Favorite quote from Stian Bam, the actor who plays André Fouche: Geweld en aksie is nie die sentrale tema van die reeks nie. Maar daar is defnitief geen tekort aan spanning nie!

Translation: “Violence and action are…not the focal point of this series. But there is definitely no shortage of suspense!”

5. How Can AfrikaansPod101 Help You to Learn Afrikaans Faster?

AfrikaansPod101 stands out among online learning platforms, with many free learning tools to help you master Afrikaans easily.

These tools include:

  1. Quick, easy access to the Afrikaans Core 100 Word List
  2. A new Afrikaans word to learn every day!
  3. An extensive vocabulary list, regularly updated
  4. A free Afrikaans online dictionary

Speed up your learning with the help of a personal tutor, who will first assess your Afrikaans language abilities to personalize and tailor your training to your needs. Sign up now!

Know that your hard work will pay off, and AfrikaansPod101 will be here each step towards your Afrikaans mastery!

In the meantime, we hope you’ve centered in on some interesting South African TV finds from our list. Whether you plan to watch African TV shows online or elsewhere, there’s so much to be enjoyed in this niche. These Afrikaans TV shows of 2019 are sure to keep you entertained and learning for many binge-hours!

Which TV shows in Afrikaans do you most want to watch? Let us know in the comments!

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