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Cape Town City Guide

2010-05-07 13:45
The 'Mother City' is South Africa's most visited by tourists and is regarded by many as the most beautiful. It is a vibrant, multicultural city on the Atlantic Ocean, one of three coastal venues. Cape Town is backed by Table Mountain, and has many tourist attractions including the notorious Robben Island prison, where Nelson Mandela spent more than 18 years. The country's best-known wine growing region and the popular coastal 'Garden Route' are nearby.

Cape Town is the second-most populous city in South Africa and the provincial capital of the Western Cape, as well as the legislative capital of South Africa, where the National Parliament and many government offices are situated.

Located on the shore of Table Bay, Cape Town was originally developed by the Dutch East India Company as a supply station for Dutch ships sailing to Eastern Africa, India, and the Far East. Jan van Riebeeck's arrival on 6 April 1652 established the first permanent European settlement in South Africa.

Cape Town quickly outgrew its original purpose as the first European outpost at the Castle of Good Hope, becoming the economic and cultural hub of the Cape Colony. Until the Witwatersrand Gold Rush and the development of Johannesburg, Cape Town was the largest city in South Africa. It is one of the most multicultural cities in the world, reflecting its role as a major destination for immigrants and expatriates to South Africa. As of 2007 the city had an estimated population of 3.5 million.

Cape Town has a rich soccer history, with major clubs including Ajax Cape Town (a satellite of Dutch club Ajax Amsterdam) and Santos. The city’s clubs have produced many world-class players, including ex-Manchester United midfielder Quinton Fortune, Everton’s Steven Pienaar, Portsmouth’s Aaron Mokoena, and West Ham’s new signing, Benni McCarthy.

Cape Town Stadium
Cape Town will host 8 World Cup matches, including one semi-final at its brand new, state-of-the-art Stadium. For all the information on the stadium click [here]

Top things to do in Cape Town
* Take the Cable Car up Table Mountain
* Shop and have lunch/dinner in the V&A Waterfront
* Take a ferry to Robben Island from the Nelson Mandela Gateway, located in the V&A Waterfront
* Catch a live performance at one of the many theatres
* Take a tour to Cape Point, along the scenic Peninsula road
* Take a Winelands tour and sample some of the best wine in the world
* Have sundowners in Camps Bay
* Enjoy some live music and great food in one of Long Street’s many venues
* Stroll through Company Gardens with a visit to the Planetarium
* Take a tour to one of the townships

Getting around
There are numerous ways to get around Cape Town safely, cheaply and efficiently including trains, buses, taxis, walking, cycling and others. For full information click [here]

Useful links for more information:
GoTravel24's comprehensive guide to getting to and staying in Cape Town

The world famous V&A Waterfront with Table Mountain in the background (File)

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