Often referred to as the Mother City of South Africa, Cape Town is known to be the first formally established city in the year 1652. In the 1930s, a local newspaper termed that it is the only city that can claim to be a ‘metropolis’ derived from the Greek word ‘metros’ and ‘polis’ meaning mother and city. The public took to this description and hence the nickname “Mother City” was born.
Today, the city has grown to become one of the most influential hubs for South Africa and the world. People visiting and residing in Cape Town often use endearing terms like welcoming, motherly, and homely to describe the city’s atmosphere.
Here are some places you can explore to bask in the fond memories and discover the heritage of Cape Town:
Spend Time with Mother Nature at Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden
Acclaimed as one of the great botanic gardens in the world, only few can match the sheer grandeur of the setting of Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden, against the eastern side of Cape Town Table Mountain. The 528 hectares estate includes a cultivated garden and a nature reserve displaying South African plants and endangered species. Founded in 1913, Kirstenbosch strongly emphasises the cultivation of indigenous plants and the preservation of the native flora of South African territory.
Reminisce History in the Castle of Good Hope
A pentagonal fortress built by Dutch colonialists in the 17th century, the Castle of good hope is the oldest colonial building in South Africa. The renowned landmark is central to Cape Town’s history, having served as the government and military operations base for over two centuries. Exploring the castle provides a fascinating insight into the past and culture of the city of Cape Town. Each piece of architecture is an eye astonishing century-old construction with deep historical meaning.
Enter the Home of South African Penguins at Boulders Beach
Known to be one of the most visited beaches in South Africa, Boulders Beach in False Bay is also home to a colony of South African Penguins. With its clear waters, white sandy beach, and granite boulder formations, it provides a unique and beautiful setting for visitors to observe the penguins in their natural habitat. Besides being a great place for spotting penguins, this is also an ideal family-friendly swimming beach. The area is also protected as part of the Table Mountain National Park Marine Protected Area, making it a well-preserved and important ecological site.
Hike up Lion’s Head for a Bird’s Eye View of Cape Town
Located in Cape Town at a height of 669 meters above sea level, Lion’s Head is one of the most picturesque peaks in the world. The mountain top offers stunning views of the sea and the dynamic skyline of the city of Cape Town. The hike to the top takes approximately 90 minutes and is highly recommended due to the mesmerizing viewpoints it offers while trailing upwards and downwards. Lion’s Head offers two route options, Spiral Route and the Chains Route to arrive at the top. You are guaranteed a thrilling experience regardless of which route you choose!
Experience Heaven on Earth at the Cape of Good Hope
Situated on the Cape Peninsula, the Cape of Good Hope is one of the southernmost points of the African continent which faces the Atlantic Ocean. The area holds a crucial place in the history of South Africa as it allowed the continent to establish trade with Asia. Packed with alluring scenery, secluded beaches, and wonderful walking trails, the spot is simply heavenly. It is one of the most visited tourist destinations in the world.