In just 350 years the city of Cape Town, affectionately known to locals as the Mother City, has grown from a vegetable garden and supply station for passing ships to a bustling cosmopolitan city that is home to over 3,5 m inhabitants. The busy highways, the extensive port and the modern office towers thrive alongside buildings and landmarks that are part of our history from the days of slavery and rough settlement of the early days to the present where many old buildings have been carefully restored and now reflect the fascinating history of this city.
Our city day tour starts with a ride in the cable-car to the top of Table Mountain. Originally named Hoerikwaggo ‘mountain in the sea.’ by the Khoi-San people, this famous landmark is now one of the New7Wonders of Nature and has been visited by more than 20 million of people since the cable car was opened in 1929. This flat-topped mountain overlooking the city of Cape Town is known for its rich biodiversity and is home to over 1500 plant species, most of them fynbos – which forms one of the world’s six plant kingdoms all on its own. At its highest point Table Mountain is 1086 metres (3 560ft) high and affords views in every direction all the way to Robben Island, Cape Point, and the Hottentot’s Holland mountains.
After seeing some of the historic landmarks of the city, including the building where Nelson Mandela addressed the nation for the first time after his release from prison, we proceed to the Company’s Gardens.
Next on our tour is the Company’s Garden which was once a vegetable garden for supplying ships, and now offers locals and tourists a scenic stroll past the houses of Parliament, the beautiful Tuynhuis which is now the office of the President with its famous parterre garden, and St George’s Cathedral soon to be declared a special landmark site in recognition of its role in the struggle against apartheid. Our visit takes us through well-kept gardens and iconic symbols of the many historic figures that shaped this city. The South African Museum is located here, as well as the National Gallery and the Jewish Museum and Holocaust Museum.
We will also visit the city quarter known as Bo-Kaap, with its colourful houses, magnificent setting, and rich history.
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