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Overview to Cape Town: Travel Guide and Tourist Information

Cape Town

Cape Town, South Africa's second city, stares out across the massive expanses of the South Atlantic. Its range of sights, outdoor activities and beautiful surroundings make it a major starting point for travelers looking to explore Africa.

The city’s skyline is dominated by the truly iconic Table Mountain. And if it looks dramatic from the bottom, looming menacingly over the city, the effect of the view from the top (easily reached by cable car, or for the more energetic, on foot) is breathtaking.

Bo-kaap, or the Malay Quarter, is certainly the city’s most attractive. Lying in the shadow of Signal Hill, it’s a neighborhood of multi-colored houses and fantastic ethnic food. A little outside the city, meanwhile, the pleasant suburb of Hermanus is a great spot for whale watching.

Elsewhere, the V&A Waterfront is home to numerous shops as well as the city’s excellent Aquarium. The Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens is a lush area of plants and wildlife just outside the city center, and a wonderful place to spend an afternoon.

Robben Island is where Nelson Mandela and several other prominent ANC members were imprisoned. Now a World Heritage Site, it has a fascinating museum, and is one of a number of must-sees in and around the city.

Cape Town is surrounded on all sides by wonderful beaches. And with waves rolling in from the South Atlantic and Indian Oceans and crashing on the shores, Kalk Bay, Muizenberg, and Sunset Beach (although erratic) boast great surfing.

A visit to the vineyards of the Cape Winelands makes a fantastic day out (topped off, perhaps, by a tasting session or two!) This is where Cape Town really shines: It manages to be a big city that somehow unfolds perfectly into the rest of the stunning Western Cape.

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