Cape Town is the oldest city in South Africa. It was founded in 1652, making it 357 years old this year. Cape Town has almost 3.5 million inhabitants (according to a 2007 census). Cape Town is also one of the hosts cities for the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa. Recently the terminal at Cape Town International Airport was upgraded to handle the influx of tourists. The newly built Cape Town Stadium (formerly Green Point Stadium) has almost been completed. This stadium will host 5 group matches, a match in the round of 16, a Quarter Final match and a Semi Final match in the 2010 FIFA World Cup. Cape Town is the most popular international tourist destination in South Africa. This beautiful city overtakes Cairo (in Egypt) as the main tourist destination on the African continent.
Many of our users are either residents of Cape Town or will be making their way towards this city this festive season.
Here are 5 destinations that are worth checking out while you are on holiday in the city:
- Victoria & Alfred Waterfront: The historic heart of Cape Town’s working harbor and South Africa’s most visited tourist destination. Prince Alfred, 2nd son of Queen Victoria began construction of the harbor in 1860. The first basin was named after himself. The second was named after his mother. Hence the name. The V&A Waterfront has undergone many changes over the years and many of it’s buildings have been declared as National Monuments. The V&A Waterfront houses a shopping mall, numerous restaurants and wide range of accommodation for visitors. It’s also the base for various Aerial and boat tours in the Table Bay area.
- Table Mountain Aerial Cableway: The first cableway to the top of Table Mountain was opened to visitors in 1929. The cableway was upgraded in 1997 to accommodate more visitors. More than 19 million visitors have made the trip to the top of Table Mountain since its construction. This is truly one of the city’s most popular tourist destinations and worth checking out. The view from the top of Table Mountain is magnificent. Table Mountain Cafe is also located on Table Mountain to accommodate food and drink needs of visitors.
- Camps Bay: This suburb of Cape Town attracts a large number of foreign visitors and locals looking for a beach holiday. Camps Bay is nestled beneath Lions Head and the Twelve Apostles and boasts a magnificent palm fringed sandy beach as well as a trendy nightlife. The cosmopolitan beachfront is vibrant throughout the year and people visit the sidewalk cafe’s and restaurants whilst experiencing the ambiance on this magnificent place. Definitely on most tourist’ list of destinations to check out whilst vacationing in Cape Town.
- The Castle of Good Hope: This is the oldest surviving building in South Africa. It was built between 1666 and 1679. It’s also the site of an old clay and timber fort built by Jan van Riebeeck in 1652 when a maritime replenishment station had been established by the Dutch in the Cape of Good Hope. The Castle of Good Hope was declared as a National Monument in 1936. It houses the regional headquarters of the South African Army in the Western Cape, the famous William Fehr collection of historic art, the Castle Military museum and ceremonial facilities for traditional Cape Regiments. Guided tours are conducted from Monday to Saturday by Castle guides. A self-guided tour option (with a map in 7 languages) is also offered.
- Kirstenbosch: This South African National Botanical Garden is World-Renowned for the diversity and beauty of Cape flora it displays and for the magnificence of its setting against the Eastern slopes of Table Mountain. The estate covers 528 hectares. It supports diverse fynbos, flora and natural forest. Only South African plants are grown at Kirstenbosch. It was founded in 1913. Kirstenbosh is a nice place to header of to with whole family for a day of relaxation. The estate house an information center, various retail outlets and a coffee shop. It also houses a Home Gardening Center. Kirstenbosch also has various restaurants.
There are many other destinations worth visiting whilst on holiday in Cape Town. Be sure to visit the Cape Town Tourism website for more information.