Early historyThe earliest known remnants of human occupation in the region were found at Peers Cave in Fish Hoek and date to between 15,000 and 12,000 years ago. Little is known of the history of the region's first residents, since there is no written history from the area before it was first mentioned by in 1488 who was the first European to reach the area and named it "Cape of Storms" (). It was later renamed by as "Cape of Good Hope" () because of the great optimism engendered by the opening of a sea route to India and the East. recorded a sighting of the in 1497. In 1510, at the , and sixty-four of his men were killed and his party were defeated by the !Uriǁ’aekua ("Goringhaiqua" in Dutch approximate spelling) using specially trained cattle. The !Uriǁ’aekua were one of the so-called clans of the area. In the late 16th century French, Danish, Dutch and English, but mainly Portuguese, ships regularly continued to stop over in Table Bay en route to the . They traded tobacco, copper and iron with the clans of the region, in exchange for fresh meat and other provisions.
Dutch periodIn 1652, and other employees of the ( nl, Verenigde Oost-indische Compagnie, VOC) were sent to the Cape to establish a way-station for ships travelling to the , and the Fort de Goede Hoop (later replaced by the ). The settlement grew slowly during this period, as it was hard to find adequate labour. This labour shortage prompted the authorities to import slaves from and . Many of these became ancestors of the first communities. Under Van Riebeeck and his successors as VOC commanders and later governors at the Cape, an impressive range of useful plants were introduced to the Cape – in the process changing the natural environment forever. Some of these, including grapes, cereals, ground nuts, potatoes, apples and citrus, had an important and lasting influence on the societies and economies of the region.
British periodThe being transformed into 's vassal , Great Britain moved to take control of its colonies. Britain captured Cape Town in 1795, but the Cape was returned to the Dutch by treaty in 1803. British forces occupied the Cape again in 1806 following the . In the , Cape Town was permanently ceded to the United Kingdom. It became the capital of the newly formed , whose territory expanded very substantially through the 1800s. With expansion came calls for greater independence from the UK, with the Cape attaining its own parliament (1854) and a locally accountable Prime Minister (1872). Suffrage was established according to the non-racial . During the 1850s and 1860s additional plant species were introduced from Australia by the British authorities. Notably rooikrans to stabilise the sand of the to allow for a road connecting the peninsula with the rest of the African continent and to drain marshes. In 1859 the first railway line was built by the and a system of railways rapidly expanded in the 1870s. The discovery of diamonds in in 1867, and the in 1886, prompted a flood of immigrants to South Africa. In 1895 the city's first public power station, the , was opened. Conflicts between the in the interior and the British colonial government resulted in the of 1899–1902, which Britain won. From 1891 to 1901, the city's population more than doubled from 67,000 to 171,000.
South African periodIn 1910, Britain established the , which unified the Cape Colony with the two defeated Boer Republics and the British . Cape Town became the legislative capital of the Union, and later of the . Prior to the mid-twentieth century, Cape Town was one of the most racially integrated cities in the South Africa. In the 1948 national elections, the National Party won on a platform of '' '' (racial segregation) under the slogan of " swart gevaar" (Afrikaans for "black danger"). This led to the erosion and eventual abolition of the Cape's multiracial franchise, as well as to the , which classified all areas according to race. Formerly multi-racial suburbs of Cape Town were either purged of residents deemed unlawful by apartheid legislation or demolished. The most infamous example of this in Cape Town was . After it was declared a whites-only region in 1965, all housing there was demolished and over 60,000 residents were forcibly removed. Many of these residents were relocated to the . Under apartheid, the Cape was considered a " labour preference area", to the exclusion of " ", i.e. Africans. The implementation of this policy was widely opposed by trade unions, civil society and opposition parties. It is notable that this policy was not advocated for by any coloured political group, and its implementation was a unilateral decision by the apartheid government. School students from , and Nyanga in Cape Town reacted to the news of protests against Bantu Education in Soweto in June 1976 and organised gatherings and marches, which were met with resistance from the police. A number of school buildings were burnt down. Cape Town was home to many leaders of the . On , a former penitentiary island from the city, many famous political prisoners were held for years. In one of the most famous moments marking the end of apartheid, made his first public speech since his imprisonment, from the balcony of hours after being released on 11 February 1990. His speech heralded the beginning of a new era for the country, and the first democratic election, was held four years later, on 27 April 1994. Nobel Square in the features statues of South Africa's four winners: , , F. W. de Klerk and . There was a severe water shortage from 2015 to 2018.
GeographyCape Town is located at latitude 33.55° S (approximately the same as and and equivalent to and in the northern hemisphere) and longitude 18.25° E. Table Mountain, with its near vertical cliffs and flat-topped summit over high, and with Devil's Peak and Lion's Head on either side, together form a dramatic mountainous backdrop enclosing the central area of Cape Town, the so-called City Bowl. A thin strip of cloud, known colloquially as the "tablecloth", sometimes forms on top of the mountain. To the immediate south, the Cape Peninsula is a scenic mountainous spine jutting southwards into the Atlantic Ocean and terminating at . There are over 70 peaks above within City of Cape Town, Cape Town's official city limits. Many of the city's suburbs lie on the large plain called the , which extends over to the east and joins the peninsula to the mainland. The Cape Town region is characterised by an extensive coastline, rugged mountain ranges, coastal plains, inland valleys and semi-desert fringes.
Robben IslandUNESCO declared in the Western Cape a List of World Heritage Sites in Africa, World Heritage Site in 1999. Robben Island is located in Table Bay, some west of Bloubergstrand in Cape Town, and stands some 30m above sea level. Robben Island has been used as a prison where people were isolated, banished and exiled to for nearly 400 years. It was also used as a leper colony, a post office, a grazing ground, a mental hospital, and an outpost. Visitors can only access the island via the Robben Island Museum boat service, which runs three times daily until the beginning of the peak season (1 September). The ferries depart from the Nelson Mandela Gateway at the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, V&A Waterfront.
ClimateCape Town has a warm Mediterranean climate (Köppen climate classification, Köppen "Csb"), with mild, moderately wet winters and dry, warm summers. Winter, which lasts from the beginning of June to the end of August, may see large cold fronts entering for limited periods from the Atlantic Ocean with significant precipitation (meteorology), precipitation and strong north-westerly winds. Winter months in the city average a maximum of and minimum of Total annual rainfall in the city averages although in the Southern Suburbs, Cape Town, Southern Suburbs, close to the mountains, rainfall is significantly higher and averages closer to . Summer, which lasts from December to March, is warm and dry with an average maximum of and minimum of . The region can get uncomfortably hot when the Berg wind, Berg Wind, meaning "mountain wind", blows from the Karoo interior. Spring and summer generally feature a strong wind from the south-east, known locally as the south- or the Cape Doctor, so called because it blows air pollution away. This wind is caused by a persistent Pressure system#High-pressure system, high-pressure system over the South Atlantic Ocean, South Atlantic to the west of Cape Town, known as the South Atlantic High, which shifts latitude seasonally, following the sun, and influencing the strength of the fronts and their northward reach. Cape Town receives about 3,100 hours of sunshine per year. Water temperatures range greatly, between on the Atlantic Seaboard, to over in False Bay. Average annual ocean surface temperatures are between on the Atlantic Seaboard (similar to Californian waters, such as San Francisco or Big Sur), and in False Bay (similar to Northern Mediterranean temperatures, such as Nice or Monte Carlo). Unlike other parts of the country the city does not have many thunderstorms, and most of those that do occur, happen around October to December and March to April.
WeatherThe general trend is for the weather to come in from the west and move eastwards with the frontal systems, but there can also be more local weather phenomena such as occasional thunderstorms and berg wind, Berg Winds, which are warm winds coming down over the mountains from inland. There can be considerable variation in weather conditions between different parts of Cape Town on any day, though the general tendency may be similar. For example rain may fall on the Cape Peninsula in the morning, and by afternoon these conditions may have moved over to the east side of False Bay and the peninsula may be clearing, with a significant wind directional shift from north-westerly to south-westerly, which mat be followed by south-easterly depending on the season. Local variation in wind strength may be extreme, as there may be a dead calm in one place and a gale force wind a few kilometres away. There are places known for exposure to both south-easterly and north-westerly winds, and some which are sheltered from one or the other, while the south-westerlies blow most places, but not usually to quite the same extremes. A berg wind is caused by a high altitude inland high pressure, usually in winter, on the cold, dry central plateau areas above the great escarpment, coupled with lower pressures at the coast. The wind flows down the escarpment and is heated by compression. The temperature rise can be considerable and occurs over a short period. This hot, dry wind is offshore in most parts of Cape Town and it is usually followed by cool onshore winds with low cloud, fog and drizzle, and is often associated with the approach of a cold front from the west in winter, which may bring strong westerly winds and substantial frontal rain.
Flora and faunaLocated in a Conservation International, CI Biodiversity hotspot as well as the unique , the city of Cape Town has one of the highest levels of biodiversity of any equivalent area in the world. These protected areas are a World Heritage Site, and an estimated 2,200 species of plants are confined to Table Mountain – more than exist in the whole of the United Kingdom which has 1200 plant species and 67 endemic plant species. Many of these species, including a great many types of proteas, are endemic to the mountain and can be found nowhere else. It is home to a total of 19 different phytochorion, vegetation types, of which several are Endemism, endemic to the city and occur nowhere else in the world. It is also the only habitat of hundreds of endemic species, and hundreds of others which are severely restricted or threatened. This enormous species diversity is mainly because the city is uniquely located at the convergence point of several different soil types and micro-climates. Table Mountain has an unusually rich biodiversity. Its vegetation consists predominantly of several different types of the unique and rich Cape Fynbos. The main vegetation type is endangered Peninsula Sandstone Fynbos, but critically endangered Peninsula Granite Fynbos, Peninsula Shale Renosterveld and Afromontane, Afromontane forest occur in smaller portions on the mountain. Unfortunately, rapid population growth and Urbanisation, urban sprawl has covered much of these ecosystems with development. Consequently, Cape Town now has over 300 threatened plant species and 13 which are now extinct. The Cape Peninsula, which lies entirely within the city of Cape Town, has the highest concentration of threatened species of any continental area of equivalent size in the world. Tiny remnant populations of critically endangered or Extinct, near extinct plants sometimes survive on road sides, pavements and sports fields. The remaining ecosystems are partially protected through a system of over 30 List of nature reserves in Cape Town, nature reserves – including the massive Table Mountain National Park. Cape Town reached first place in the 2019 iNaturalist City Nature Challenge in two out of the three categories: Most Observations, and Most Species. This was the first entry by Capetonians in this annual competition to observe and record the local biodiversity over a four-day long weekend during what is considered the worst time of the year for local observations. However, a worldwide survey showed that the extinction rate of endemic plants from the City of Cape Town is one of the highest in the world, at roughly three per year since 1900 - partly a consequence of the very small and localised habitats and high endemicity.
SuburbsCape Town's urban geography is influenced by the contours of Table Mountain, its surrounding peaks, the Durbanville Hills, and the expansive lowland region known as the Cape Flats. These geographic features in part divide the city into several commonly known groupings of suburbs (equivalent to districts outside South Africa), many of which developed historically together and share common attributes of language and culture.
City BowlThe City Bowl is a natural amphitheatre-shaped area bordered by Table Bay and defined by the mountains of Signal Hill (Cape Town), Signal Hill, Lion's Head, Table Mountain and Devil's Peak. The area includes the central business district of Cape Town, the harbour, the Company's Garden, and the residential suburbs of De Waterkant, Cape Town, De Waterkant, Devil's Peak Estate, Devil's Peak, District Six, Zonnebloem, Gardens, Cape Town, Gardens, Bo-Kaap, Higgovale, Cape Town, Higgovale, Oranjezicht, Cape Town, Oranjezicht, Schotsche Kloof, Cape Town, Schotsche Kloof, Tamboerskloof, University Estate, Cape Town, University Estate, Vredehoek, Cape Town, Vredehoek, Walmer Estate, Cape Town, Walmer Estate and Woodstock, Cape Town, Woodstock. The Foreshore Freeway Bridge has stood in its unfinished state since construction officially ended in 1977. It was intended to be the Eastern Boulevard Highway in the city bowl, but is unfinished due to budget constraints.
Atlantic SeaboardThe Atlantic Seaboard lies west of the City Bowl and Table Mountain, and is characterised by its beaches, cliffs, promenade and hillside communities. The area includes, from north to south, the neighbourhoods of Green Point, Cape Town, Green Point, Mouille Point, Cape Town, Mouille Point, Three Anchor Bay, Sea Point, Fresnaye, Cape Town, Fresnaye, Bantry Bay, Cape Town, Bantry Bay, Clifton, Cape Town, Clifton, Camps Bay, Llandudno, Cape Town, Llandudno, and Hout Bay. The Atlantic Seaboard has some of the most expensive real estate in South Africa particularly on Nettleton and Clifton Roads in Clifton, Ocean View Drive and St Leon Avenue in Bantry Bay, Theresa Avenue in Bakoven and Fishermans Bend in Llandudno. Camps Bay is home to the highest concentration of multimillionaires in Cape Town and has the highest number of high-priced mansions in South Africa with more than 155 residential units exceeding R20 million (or $US1.8 million).
BlaauwbergBlaauwberg is a coastal region of the City of Cape Town, Cape Town Metropolitan area and lies along the coast to the north of Cape Town, and includes the suburbs Bloubergstrand, Cape Town, Bloubergstrand, Milnerton, Cape Town, Milnerton, Tableview, Cape Town, Tableview, West Beach, Big Bay, Sunset Beach, Sunningdale, Parklands, Western Cape, Parklands and Parklands North, as well as the exurbs of Atlantis, Western Cape, Atlantis, Mamre, Western Cape, Mamre and Melkbosstrand. The Koeberg Nuclear Power Station is located within this area and maximum housing density regulations are enforced in much of the area surrounding the nuclear plant.
Northern SuburbsThe Northern Suburbs is a predominantly Afrikaans-speaking region of the City of Cape Town, Cape Town Metropolitan area and includes Belhar, Bellville, Cape Town, Bellville, Blue Downs, Bothasig, Cape Town, Bothasig, Burgundy Estate, Durbanville, Cape Town, Durbanville, Edgemead, Cape Town, Edgemead, Brackenfell, Cape Town, Brackenfell, Elsie's River, Cape Town, Elsie's River, Eerste River, Western Cape, Eerste River, Kraaifontein, Goodwood, Cape Town, Goodwood, Kensington, Cape Town, Kensington, Maitland, Cape Town, Maitland, Monte Vista, Cape Town, Monte Vista, Panorama, Cape Town, Panorama, Parow, South Africa, Parow, Richwood, Cape Town, Richwood, Kraaifontein, Cape Town, Kraaifontein and Kuils River. The Northern Suburbs are home to Tygerberg Hospital, the largest hospital in the Western Cape and second largest in South Africa
Southern SuburbsThe Southern Suburbs lie along the eastern slopes of Table Mountain, southeast of the city centre. This area is predominantly English-speaking, and includes, from north to south, Observatory, Cape Town, Observatory, Mowbray, Cape Town, Mowbray, Pinelands, Cape Town, Pinelands, Rosebank, Cape Town, Rosebank, Rondebosch, Rondebosch East, Newlands, Cape Town, Newlands, Claremont, Cape Town, Claremont, Lansdowne, Cape Town, Lansdowne, Kenilworth, Cape Town, Kenilworth, Bishopscourt, Cape Town, Bishopscourt, Constantia, Cape Town, Constantia, Wynberg, Cape Town, Wynberg, Plumstead, Cape Town, Plumstead, Ottery, Cape Town, Ottery, Bergvliet, Cape Town, Bergvliet and Diep River, Cape Town, Diep River. West of Wynberg lies Constantia, Cape Town, Constantia which, in addition to being a wealthy neighbourhood, is a notable wine-growing region within the City of Cape Town, and attracts tourists for its well-known wine farms and Cape Dutch architecture. The Southern Suburbs is also well known as having some of the oldest, and most sought after residential areas within the City of Cape Town.
South PeninsulaThe South Peninsula is a predominantly English-speaking area in the City of Cape Town, Cape Town Metropolitan area and is generally regarded as the area South of Muizenberg, Cape Town, Muizenberg on False Bay and Noordhoek, Cape Town, Noordhoek on the Atlantic Ocean, all the way to Cape Point. Until recently, this region was quite rural, however the population of the area is growing quickly as new coastal developments proliferate and larger plots are subdivided to provide more compact housing. It includes Capri Village, Cape Town, Capri Village, Clovelly, Fish Hoek, Cape Town, Fish Hoek, Glencairn, Cape Town, Glencairn, Kalk Bay, Kommetjie, Cape Town, Kommetjie, Masiphumelele, Cape Town, Masiphumelele, Muizenberg, Noordhoek, Cape Town, Noordhoek, Ocean View, Cape Town, Ocean View, Scarborough, Cape Town, Scarborough, Simon's Town, St James, Cape Town, St James, Sunnydale and Sun Valley. South Africa's largest Naval Base Simon's Town, naval base is located at Simon's Town harbour, and close by is Boulders Beach, the site of a large colony of African penguins.
Cape FlatsThe Cape Flats is an expansive, low-lying, flat area situated to the southeast of the city centre. Due to the region having a Mediterranean climate, the wettest months on the Cape Flats are from April to September, with 82% most of its rainfall occurring between these months. The rainfall patterns on the Cape Flats vary with longitude, such that the eastern parts get a minimum of 214mm per year and the central and western parts get 800mm per year. A significant portion of this water ends up in the Cape Flats Aquifer, which lie beneath the central and southern parts of the Cape Flats. Most of the land of the Cape Flats is used for residential areas, the majority of which are Suburb, formal, but with several Shanty town, informal settlements present. Light Industrial park, industrial areas are also found in the area. A part of the land in the south-east is used for Agriculture, cultivation and contains many smallholdings.
HelderbergThe Helderberg is a small region in the City of Cape Town, Cape Town Metropolitan area located on the north-eastern corner of False Bay. It consists of Somerset West, Strand, Western Cape, Strand, Gordons Bay and a few other suburbs which were previously towns in the Helderberg district. The district takes its name from the imposing Helderberg Mountain, which reaches a height of
GovernmentCape Town is governed by a 231-member city council elected in a system of mixed-member proportional representation. The city is divided into 116 ward (South Africa), wards, each of which elects a councillor by first-past-the-post voting. The remaining 115 councillors are elected from party lists so that the total number of councillors for each party is proportional to the number of votes received by that party. In the South African municipal election, 2016, local government elections of 3 August 2016, the Democratic Alliance (South Africa), Democratic Alliance (DA) won an outright majority, taking 154 of the 231 council seats. The African National Congress, the national ruling party, received 57 seats. As a result of this victory, Patricia de Lille of the Democratic Alliance was re-elected to a second term as Executive Mayor. However, De Lille resigned as Mayor on 31 October 2018. The Democratic Alliance designated Dan Plato as their candidate to replace her.
DemographicsAccording to the South African National Census of 2011, the population of the City of Cape Town metropolitan municipalityan area that includes suburbs and exurbs not always considered as part of Cape Townis 3,740,026 people. This represents an annual growth rate of 2.6% compared to the results of the South African National Census of 2001, previous census in 2001 which found a population of 2,892,243 people. The Human sex ratio, sex ratio is 96, meaning that there are slightly more women than men. 42.4% of the population described themselves as " ", 38.6% as "Bantu peoples in South Africa, Black African", 15.7% as "White South African, White", 1.4% as "Indian South African, Indian or Asian South African, Asian"and 1.9% as "Other". In 1944, 47% of the city's population was White, 46% was Coloured, less than 6% was Black African and 1% was Asian. Of those residents who were asked about their first language, 35.7% spoke , 29.8% spoke and 28.4% spoke South African English, English. 24.8% of the population is under the age of 15, while 5.5% is 65 or older. Of those residents aged 20 or older, 1.8% have no schooling, 8.1% have some schooling but did not finish primary school, 4.6% finished primary school but have no secondary schooling, 38.9% have some secondary schooling but did not finish Grade 12, 29.9% finished Grade 12 but have no higher education, and 16.7% have higher education. Overall, 46.6% have at least a Grade 12 education. Of those aged between 5 and 25, 67.8% are attending an educational institution. Amongst those aged between 15 and 65 the unemployment rate is 23.7%. The average annual household income is South African rand, R161,762. There are 1,068,573 households in the municipality, giving an average household size of 3.3 people. Of those households, 78.4% are in formal structures (houses or apartment, flats), while 20.5% are in informal structures (Shanty town, shacks). 94.0% of households use mains electricity, electricity for lighting. 87.3% of households have water supply, piped water to the dwelling, while 12.0% have piped water through a communal tap. 94.9% of households have regular refuse collection service. 91.4% of households have a flush toilet or chemical toilet, while 4.5% still use a bucket toilet. 82.1% of households have a refrigerator, 87.3% have a television and 70.1% have a radio. Only 34.0% have a landline telephone, but 91.3% have a cellphone. 37.9% have a computer, and 49.3% have access to the Internet (either through a computer or a cellphone).
EconomyCape Town is the economic hub of the province, 's second main economic centre and Africa's third main economic hub city. It serves as the regional manufacturing centre in the Western Cape. In 2011 the city's GDP was American dollar, US$56.8 billion with a GDP per capita of US$15,721. In the five years preceding 2014 Cape Town GDP grew at an average of 3.7% a year. As a proportion of GDP, the agriculture and manufacturing sectors have declined whilst finance, business services, transport and logistics have grown reflecting the growth in specialised services sectors of the local economy. Fishing, clothing and textiles, wood product manufacturing, electronics, furniture, hospitality, finance and business services are industries in which Cape Town's economy has the largest comparative advantage. Between 2001 and 2010 the city's Gini coefficient, a measure of inequality, improved by dropping from 0.59 in 2007 to 0.57 in 2010 only to increase to 0.58 by 2017. The city has the lowest rate of inequality in South Africa. Cape Town has recently enjoyed a booming real estate and construction market, because of the as well as many people buying summer homes in the city or relocating there permanently. Cape Town hosted nine World Cup matches: Six first-round matches, one second-round match, one quarter final and one semifinal. The central business district is under an extensive urban renewal programme, with numerous new buildings and renovations taking place under the guidance of the Cape Town Partnership. Cape Town has four major commercial nodes, with Cape Town Central Business District containing the majority of job opportunities and office space. Century City (Cape Town), Century City, the Bellville, Western Cape, Bellville/Tyger Valley, Tygervalley strip and Claremont, Cape Town, Claremont commercial nodes are well established and contain many offices and corporate headquarters as well. Most companies headquartered in the city are insurance companies, retail groups, publishers, design houses, fashion designers, shipping companies, petrochemical companies, architects and advertising agencies. The most notable companies headquartered in the city are food and fashion retailer Woolworths (South Africa), Woolworths, supermarket chain Pick n Pay Stores and Shoprite (South Africa), Shoprite, New Clicks Holdings Limited, fashion retailer Foschini Group, internet service provider MWEB, Mediclinic International, eTV, multinational mass media giant Naspers, and financial services giant Sanlam. Other notable companies include Belron (vehicle glass repair and replacement group operating worldwide), CapeRay (develops, manufactures and supplies medical imaging equipment for the diagnosis of breast cancer), Ceres Fruit Juices (produces fruit juice and other fruit based products), Coronation Fund Managers (third-party fund management company), ICS (was one of the largest meat processing and distribution companies in the world), Vida e Caffè (chain of coffee retailers), Capitec Bank (commercial bank in the Republic of South Africa). The city is a manufacturing base for several multinational companies including, Johnson & Johnson, GlaxoSmithKline, Levi Strauss & Co., Adidas, Bokomo, Bokomo Foods, Yoco and Nampak. Most goods are handled through the Port of Cape Town or Cape Town International Airport. Most major shipbuilding companies have offices in Cape Town. The province is also a centre of energy development for the country, with the existing Koeberg nuclear power station providing energy for the Western Cape's needs. The Western Cape is an important tourist region in South Africa; the tourism industry accounts for 9.8% of the GDP of the province and employs 9.6% of the province's workforce. In 2010, over 1.5 million international tourists visited the area. With the highest number of successful Technology companies in Africa, Cape Town is an important centre for the industry on the continent. This includes an increasing number of companies in the Space industry. Growing at an annual rate of 8.5% and an estimated worth of R77 billion in 2010, nationwide the high tech industry in Cape Town is becoming increasingly important to the city's economy. The city was recently named as the most entrepreneurial city in South Africa, with the percentage of Capetonians pursuing business opportunities almost three times higher than the national average. Those aged between 18 and 64 were 190% more likely to pursue new business, whilst in Johannesburg, the same demographic group was only 60% more likely than the national average to pursue a new business. Numerous startups in the Space industry have been founded in Cape Town. With a number of entrepreneurship initiatives and world class universities providing skills, Cape Town has become the Silicon Valley of South Africa, hosting innovative technology startups such as Jumo, Yoco, Aerobotics, Luno and The Sun Exchange.
TourismCape Town is not only a popular international tourist destination in , but Africa as a whole. This is due to its mild climate, natural setting, and well-developed infrastructure. The city has several well-known natural features that attract tourists, most notably , which forms a large part of the Table Mountain National Park and is the back end of the City Bowl, Cape Town, City Bowl. Reaching the top of the mountain can be achieved either by hiking up, or by taking the Table Mountain Cableway. is recognised as the dramatic headland at the end of the Cape Peninsula. Many tourists also drive along Chapman's Peak, Chapman's Peak Drive, a narrow road that links Noordhoek, Cape Town, Noordhoek with Hout Bay, Cape Town, Hout Bay, for the views of the Atlantic Ocean and nearby mountains. It is possible to either drive or hike up Signal Hill (Cape Town), Signal Hill for closer views of the City Bowl and Table Mountain. Many tourists also visit List of beaches of Cape Town, Cape Town's beaches, which are popular with local residents. Due to the city's unique geography, it is possible to visit several different beaches in the same day, each with a different setting and atmosphere. Though the Cape's water ranges from cold to mild, the difference between the two sides of the city is dramatic. While the Atlantic Seaboard averages annual water temperatures barely above that of coastal California around , the False Bay coast is much warmer, averaging between annually. This is similar to water temperatures in much of the Northern Mediterranean (for example Nice). In summer, False Bay water averages slightly over , with a common high. Beaches located on the Atlantic Coast tend to have very cold water due to the Benguela current which originates from the Southern Ocean, whilst the water at False Bay beaches may be warmer by up to at the same moment due to the influence of the warm Agulhas Current, Agulhas current. It is a common misconception that False Bay is part of the Indian Ocean, with Cape Point being both the meeting point of the Indian and Atlantic Oceans, and the southernmost tip of Africa. The oceans in fact meet at the actual southernmost tip, Cape Agulhas, which lies approximately to the south east. The misconception is fuelled by the relative warmth of the False Bay water to the Atlantic Seaboard water, and the many confusing instances of "Two Oceans" in names synonymous with Cape Town, such as the Two Oceans Marathon, the Two Oceans Aquarium, and places such as Two Oceans wine farm. Both coasts are equally popular, although the beaches in affluent Clifton, Cape Town, Clifton and elsewhere on the Atlantic Coast are better developed with restaurants and cafés, with a strip of restaurants and bars accessible to the beach at Camps Bay. The Atlantic seaboard, known as Cape Town's Riviera, is regarded as one of the most scenic routes in South Africa, along the slopes of the Twelve Apostles (Cape Town), Twelve Apostles to the boulders and white sand beaches of Llandudno, Cape Town, Llandudno, which the route ending in Hout Bay, a diverse bustling suburb with a harbour and a seal island. This fishing village is flanked by the Constantia valley and the picturesque Chapman's Peak drive. Boulders Beach near Simon's Town is known for its colony of African penguins. Surfing is popular and the city hosts the Red Bull Big Wave Africa surfing competition every year. The city has several notable cultural attractions. The , built on top of part of the dock (maritime), docks of the Port of Cape Town, is the city's most visited tourist attraction. It is also one of the city's most popular shopping venues, with several hundred shops and the Two Oceans Aquarium. The V&A also hosts the Nelson Mandela Gateway, through which ferry, ferries depart for . It is possible to take a ferry from the V&A to Hout Bay, Cape Town, Hout Bay, Simon's Town, Cape Town, Simon's Town and the Cape fur seal colonies on Seal and Duiker Islands. Several companies offer tours of the , a mostly Coloured Township (South Africa), township, and Khayelitsha, a mostly black township. The most popular areas for visitors to stay include Camps Bay, Sea Point, the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, V&A Waterfront, the City Bowl, Cape Town, City Bowl, Hout Bay, Constantia, Cape Town, Constantia, Rondebosch, Newlands, Cape Town, Newlands, and Somerset West. In November 2013, Cape Town was voted the best global city in '' s annual Travel Awards. Cape Town offers tourists a range of air, land and sea based adventure activities, including paragliding and skydiving. The City of Cape Town works closely with Cape Town Tourism to promote the city both locally and internationally. The primary focus of Cape Town Tourism is to represent Cape Town as a tourist destination. Cape Town Tourism receives a portion of its funding from the City of Cape Town while the remainder is made up of membership fees and own-generated funds. The Tristan da Cunha government owns and operates a lodging facility in Cape Town which charges discounted rates to Tristan da Cunha residents and non-resident natives.
CrimeIn recent years, the city has struggled with problems such as drugs, a surge in violent drug-related crime and more recently gang violence. In the alone, there are approximately 100,000 people in over 130 different gangs in 2018. While there are some alliances, this multitude and division is also cause for conflict between groups. At the same time, the economy has grown due to the boom in the tourism and the real estate industries. With a Gini coefficient of 0.58, Cape Town had the lowest inequality rate in South Africa in 2012. Since July 2019 widespread violent crime in poorer Gangs in South Africa, gang dominated areas of greater Cape Town has resulted in an ongoing military presence in these neighbourhoods. Cape Town had the highest murder rate among large South African cities at 77 murders per 100,000 people in the period April 2018 to March 2019, with 3157 murders mostly occurring in poor townships created under the apartheid regime. It is the most murderous city in the world by death toll.
Places of worshipMost places of worship in the city are Christianity, Christian churches and cathedrals: Zion Christian Church, Apostolic Faith Mission of South Africa, Assemblies of God, Baptist Union of Southern Africa (Baptist World Alliance), Methodist Church of Southern Africa (World Methodist Council), Anglican Church of Southern Africa (Anglican Communion), Presbyterian Church of Africa (World Communion of Reformed Churches), Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Cape Town (Catholic Church). Islam is the city's second largest religion with a Islam in South Africa, long history in Cape Town resulting in a number of mosques and other Muslim religious sites spread across the city such as the Auwal Mosque South Africa's first mosque. Cape Town's significant History of the Jews in South Africa, Jewish population supports a number of synagogues most notably the historic Gardens Shul. The Cape Town Progressive Jewish Congregation (CTPJC) also has three temples in the city. Other religious sites in the city include Hindu, Buddhism, Buddhist and Baháʼí Faith in South Africa, Baháʼí temples.
MediaSeveral newspapers, magazines and printing facilities have their offices in the city. Independent News and Media publishes the major English language papers in the city, the ''Cape Argus'' and the ''Cape Times''. Naspers, the largest media conglomerate in South Africa, publishes ''Die Burger'', the major Afrikaans language paper. Cape Town has many local community newspapers. Some of the largest community newspapers in English are the ''Athlone News'' from Athlone, Cape Town, Athlone, the ''Atlantic Sun'', the ''Constantiaberg Bulletin'' from Constantiaberg, Cape Town, Constantiaberg, the ''City Vision'' from Bellville, Cape Town, Bellville, the ''False Bay Echo'' from False Bay, the ''Helderberg Sun'' from Helderberg, Cape Town, Helderberg, the ''Plainsman (South Africa), Plainsman'' from Michell's Plain, the ''Sentinel News'' from Hout Bay, the ''Southern Mail (newspaper), Southern Mail'' from the Southern Peninsula, the ''Southern Suburbs Tatler'' from the Southern Suburbs, Cape Town, Southern Suburbs, ''Table Talk (Cape Town), Table Talk'' from Table View and ''Tygertalk'' from Tygervalley/Durbanville. Afrikaans language community newspapers include the ''Landbou-Burger'' and the ''Tygerburger''. ''Vukani'', based in the Cape Flats, is published in . Cape Town is a centre for major broadcast media with several radio stations that only broadcast within the city. KFM (Cape Town), 94.5 Kfm (94.5 MHz FM) and Good Hope FM (94–97 megahertz, MHz FM broadcasting, FM) mostly play pop music. Heart FM (104.9 MHz FM), the former P4 Radio, plays jazz and R&B, while Fine Music Radio (101.3 FM) plays European classical music, classical music and jazz, and Magic Music Radio (828 kilohertz, kHz Mediumwave, MW) plays the best of adult contemporary and classic rock from the 60's, 70's, 80's, 90's and 00's. Bush Radio (South Africa), Bush Radio is a community radio station (89.5 MHz FM). The Voice of the Cape (95.8 MHz FM) and Cape Talk (567 kilohertz, kHz Mediumwave, MW) are the major talk radio, talk radio stations in the city. Bokradio (98.9 MHz FM) is an Afrikaans music station. The University of Cape Town also runs its own radio station, UCT Radio (104.5 MHz FM). The SABC has a small presence in the city, with satellite studios located at Sea Point. e.tv has a greater presence, with a large complex located at Longkloof Studios in Gardens, Cape Town, Gardens. M-Net is not well represented with infrastructure within the city. Cape Town TV is a local TV station, supported by numerous organisation and focusing mostly on documentaries. Numerous productions companies and their support industries are located in the city, mostly supporting the production of overseas commercials, model shoots, TV-series and movies. The local media infrastructure remains primarily in Johannesburg.
Sports eventsThe city of Cape Town has vast experience in hosting major national and international sports events. The Cape Town Cycle Tour is the world's largest individually timed cycle raceand the first event outside Europe to be included in the International Cycling Union's Golden Bike Series. It sees over 35,000 cyclists tackling a route around Cape Town. The Absa Cape Epic is the largest full-service mountain bike stage race in the world. Some notable events hosted by Cape Town have included the , 2003 ICC Cricket World Cup, and World Championships in various sports such as athletics, fencing, weightlifting, hockey, cycling, canoeing, gymnastics and others. Cape Town was also a host city to the from 11 June to 11 July 2010, further enhancing its profile as a major events city. It was also one of the host cities of the 2009 Indian Premier League cricket tournament. The Mother City has also played host to the South Africa Sevens, Africa leg of the annual World Rugby 7s event since 2015; for nine seasons, from 2002 until 2010, the event was staged in George, Western Cape, George in the Western Cape, before moving to Port Elizabeth for the 2011 South Africa Sevens, 2011 edition, and then to Cape Town in 2015. The event usually takes place in mid-December, and is hosted at the iconic Cape Town Stadium in Green Point, perfectly set against the backdrop of the Atlantic Ocean and the unmistakable silhouette of Table Mountain .
EducationPublic primary and secondary schools in Cape Town are run by the Western Cape Education Department. This provincial department is divided into seven districts; four of these are "Metropole" districtsMetropole Central, North, South, and Eastwhich cover various areas of the city. There are also many private schools, both religious and secular, in Cape Town.
Tertiary educationCape Town has a well-developed higher system of public university, public universities. Cape Town is served by three public universities: the University of Cape Town (UCT), the University of the Western Cape (UWC) and the Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT). Stellenbosch University, while not in the city itself, is 50 kilometres from the City Bowl and has additional campuses, such as the Tygerberg Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences and the Bellville Business Park closer to the city. Both the University of Cape Town and Stellenbosch University are leading universities in South Africa. This is due in large part to substantial financial contributions made to these institutions by both the public and private sector. UCT is an English-speaking institution. It has over 21,000 students and has an MBA programme that was ranked 51st by the Financial Times in 2006. It is also the top-ranked university in Africa, being the only African university to make the world's Top 200 university list at number 146. Since the African National Congress has become the country's ruling party, some restructuring of Western Cape universities has taken place and as such, traditionally non-white universities have seen increased financing, which has evidently benefitted the University of the Western Cape. The Cape Peninsula University of Technology was formed on 1 January 2005, when two separate institutions – Cape Technikon and Peninsula Technikon – were merged. The new university offers education primarily in English, although one may take courses in any of South Africa's official languages. The institution generally awards the National Diploma (South Africa), National Diploma. Students from the universities and high schools are involved in the South African SEDS, Students for the Exploration and Development of Space. This is the South African SEDS, and there are many SEDS branches in other countries, preparing enthusiastic students and young professionals for the growing Space industry. Cape Town has also become a popular Study abroad in the United States, study abroad destination for many international college students. Many study abroad organization, study abroad providers offer semester, summer, short-term, and internship programs in partnership with Cape Town universities as a chance for international students to gain intercultural understanding.
AirCape Town International Airport serves both domestic and international flights. It is the second-largest airport in South Africa and serves as a major gateway for travelers to the Cape region. Cape Town has regularly scheduled services to Southern Africa, , Mauritius, Middle East, , Europe and the United States as well as eleven domestic destinations. Cape Town International Airport recently opened a brand new central terminal building that was developed to handle an expected increase in air traffic as tourism numbers increased in the lead-up to the tournament of the . Other renovations include several large new parking garages, a revamped domestic departure terminal, a new Bus Rapid Transit system station and a new double-decker road system. The airport's cargo facilities are also being expanded and several large empty lots are being developed into office, office space and hotels. The Cape Town International Airport was among the winners of the World Travel Awards for being Africa's leading airport. Cape Town International Airport is located 18 km from the Central Business District
SeaCape Town has a long tradition as a port city. The Port of Cape Town, the city's main port, is in Table Bay directly to the north of the CBD. The port is a hub for ships in the southern Atlantic: it is located along one of the busiest shipping corridors in the world. It is also a busy container port, second in South Africa only to Durban. In 2004, it handled 3,161 ships and 9.2 million tonnes of cargo. Simon's Town Harbour on the False Bay coast of the Cape Peninsula is the main operational base of the South African Navy. Until the 1970s the city was served by the Union Castle Line with service to the United Kingdom and St Helena. The RMS St Helena (1989), RMS ''St Helena'' provided passenger and cargo service between Cape Town and St Helena until the opening of St Helena Airport. The cargo vessel M/V ''Helena'', under AW Shipping Management, takes a limited number of passengers, between Cape Town and St Helena and Ascension Island on its voyages. Multiple vessels also take passengers to and from Tristan da Cunha, inaccessible by aircraft, to and from Cape Town. In addition takes passengers on its cargo service to the Canary Islands and Hamburg, Germany.
RailThe Shosholoza Meyl is the passenger rail operations of Spoornet and operates two long-distance passenger rail services from Cape Town: a daily service to and from Johannesburg via Kimberley, South Africa, Kimberley and a weekly service to and from Durban via Kimberley, South Africa, Kimberley, and Pietermaritzburg. These trains terminate at Cape Town railway station and make a brief stop at Bellville railway station, Bellville. Cape Town is also one terminus of the luxury tourist-oriented Blue Train (South Africa), Blue Train as well as the five-star Rovos Rail. Metrorail (Western Cape), Metrorail operates a commuter rail service in Cape Town and the surrounding area. The Metrorail network consists of 96 stations throughout the suburbs and outskirts of Cape Town.
RoadCape Town is the origin of three National Roads in South Africa, national roads. The N1 (South Africa), N1 and N2 (South Africa), N2 begin in the foreshore area near the City Center and the N7 (South Africa), N7, which runs North toward Namibia. The N1 runs East-North-East through Edgemead, Cape Town, Edgemead, Parow, South Africa, Parow, Bellville, Cape Town, Bellville, and Brackenfell, Cape Town, Brackenfell. It connects Cape Town to major cities further inland, namely , , and An older at-grade road, the R101 road (South Africa), R101, runs parallel to the N1 from Bellville. The N2 runs East-South-East through Rondebosch, Guguletu, Khayelitsha, Macassar, Western Cape, Macassar to Somerset West. It becomes a multiple-carriageway, at-grade road from the intersection with the R44 road (South Africa), R44 onwards. The N2 continues east along the coast, linking Cape Town to the coastal cities of Gqeberha, East London, South Africa, East London and Durban. An older at-grade road, the R102 road (South Africa), R101, runs parallel to the N1 initially, before veering south at Bellville, to join the N2 at Somerset West via the suburbs of Kuils River and Eerste River, Western Cape, Eerste River. The N7 originates from the N1 at Wingfield Interchange near Edgemead. It begins, initially as a highway, but becoming an at-grade road from the intersection with the M5 onwards. There are also a number of Provincial route (South Africa), regional routes linking Cape Town with surrounding areas. The R27 road (South Africa), R27 originates from the N1 near the Foreshore and runs north parallel to the N7, but nearer to the coast. It passes through the suburbs of Milnerton, Cape Town, Milnerton, Table View, Cape Town, Table View and Bloubergstrand, Cape Town, Bloubergstrand and links the city to the West Coast, ending at the town of Velddrif. The R44 road (South Africa), R44 enters the east of the metro from the north, from Stellenbosch. It connects Stellenbosch to Somerset West, then crosses the N2 to Strand, Western Cape, Strand and Gordon's Bay. It exits the metro heading south hugging the coast, leading to the towns of Betty's Bay and Kleinmond. Of the three-digit routes, the R300 road (South Africa), R300, is an expressway linking the N1 at Brackenfell to the N2 near Mitchells Plain and the Cape Town International Airport. The R302 road (South Africa), R302 runs from the R102 in Bellville, heading north across the N1 through Durbanville leaving the metro to Malmesbury, Western Cape, Malmesbury. The R304 road (South Africa), R304 enters the northern limits of the metro from Stellenbosch, running NNW before veering west to cross the N7 at Philadelphia, Western Cape, Philadelphia to end at Atlantis, Western Cape, Atlantis at a junction with the R307 road (South Africa), R307. This R307 starts north of Koeberg from the R27 and, after meeting the R304, continues north to Darling, Western Cape, Darling. The R310 road (South Africa), R310 originates from Muizenberg and runs along the coast, to the south of Mitchell's Plain and Khayelitsha, before veering north-east, crossing the N2 west of Macassar, and exiting the metro heading to Stellenbosch. Cape Town, like most South African cities, uses Metropolitan Routes in Cape Town, Metropolitan or "M" routes for important intra-city routes, a layer below National (N) roads and Regional (R) routes. Each city's M roads are independently numbered. Most are at-grade roads. However, the M3 (Cape Town), M3 splits from the N2 and runs to the south along the eastern slopes of Table Mountain, connecting the City Bowl with Muizenberg. Except for a section between Rondebosch and Newlands that has at-grade intersections, this route is a highway. The M5 (Cape Town), M5 splits from the N1 further east than the M3, and links the Cape Flats to the CBD. It is a highway as far as the interchange with the M68 at Ottery, before continuing as an at-grade road. Cape Town suffers from the worst traffic congestion in .
BusesGolden Arrow Bus Services operates scheduled bus services in the Cape Town metropolitan area. Several companies run long-distance bus services from Cape Town to the other cities in South Africa.
Integrated Rapid Transit (IRT)Cape Town has a public transport system in about 10% of the city, running north to south along the west coastline of the city, comprising Phase 1 of the IRT system. This is known as the MyCiTi service. MyCiTi Phase 1 includes services linking the Airport to the Cape Town inner city, as well as the following areas: Bloubergstrand, Blouberg / Table View, Dunoon, Cape Town, Dunoon, Atlantis, Western Cape, Atlantis and Melkbosstrand, Milnerton, Cape Town, Milnerton, Paarden Eiland, Century City, Cape Town, Century City, Salt River, Cape Town, Salt River and Walmer Estate, Cape Town, Walmer Estate, and all suburbs of the City Bowl and #Atlantic Seaboard, Atlantic Seaboard all the way to Llandudno, Cape Town, Llandudno and Hout Bay, Cape Town, Hout Bay. The MyCiTi N2 Express service consists of two routes each linking the Cape Town inner city and Khayelitsha and Mitchells Plain on the . The service use high floor articulated and standard size buses in dedicated busways, low floor articulated and standard size buses on the N2 Express service, and smaller Optare buses in suburban and inner city areas. It offers Accessibility#Transportation, universal access through level boarding and numerous other measures, and requires cashless fare payment using the EMV compliant smart card system, called myconnect. Headway of services (i.e. the time between buses on the same route) range from 3 mins to 20 mins in peak times to 60 minutes during quiet off-peak periods.
TaxisCape Town has two kinds of taxis: taxicab, metered taxis and minibus taxis. Unlike many cities, metered taxis are not allowed to drive around the city to solicit fares and instead must be called to a specific location. Cape Town metered taxi cabs mostly operate in the city bowl, suburbs and Cape Town International Airport areas. Large companies that operate fleets of cabs can be reached by phone and are cheaper than the single operators that apply for hire from taxi ranks and Victoria and Alfred Waterfront. There are about one thousand meter taxis in Cape Town. Their rates vary from R8 per kilometre to about R15 per kilometre. The larger taxi companies in Cape Town are Excite Taxis, Cabnet and Intercab and single operators are reachable by cellular phone. The seven seated Toyota Avanza are the most popular with larger Taxi companies. Meter cabs are mostly used by tourists and are safer to use than minibus taxis. Minibus taxis are the standard form of transport for the majority of the population who cannot afford private vehicles. Although essential, these taxis are often poorly maintained and are frequently not road-worthy. These taxis make frequent unscheduled stops to pick up passengers, which can cause accidents. With the high demand for transport by the working class of South Africa, minibus taxis are often filled over their legal passenger allowance. Minibuses are generally owned and operated in fleets.
International relationsCape Town has eighteen active sister city agreements * Aachen, Germany * Accra, Ghana * Atlanta, United States of America * , Argentina * Bujumbura, Burundi * Dubai, United Arab Emirates * Hangzhou, China * Houston, United States of America * Huangshan, China * Izmir, Turkey * Malmö, Sweden * Miami, Florida, Miami, United States of America * Monterrey, Mexico * Munich, Germany * Rio de Janeiro, Brazil * Shenzhen, China * Varna, Bulgaria * Wuhan, China
See also* Outline of Cape Town * OPENCities