Cape Town, South Africa is a city rich in history and culture. There are so many interesting things to learn about this city, all of which add to the flavor that makes Cape Town so unique. While looking at Cape Town Magazine, I found an article that details some fun facts about the city, which I would like to share below.
1) Cape Town Is South Africa’s Tobogganing Hub
Cape Town is home to the only tobogganing track in Africa. The track is named Cool Runnings, referencing the film about Jamaica’s first bobsled team. If you would like to check out the track, it is located only 25km outside of the city on Carl Cronje Drive.
2) Two Couples Get Hitched On Table Mountain Every Month
Table Mountain is a flat-topped mountain that began forming around 280 million years ago. Table Mountain National Park spans an area of 22,000 hectares and is home to more plant species than the British Isles or New Zealand. The beauty of Table Mountain attracts many people, either by hiking or the cableway. It is estimated that two couples get married on Table Mountain every month!
3) Cape Town Was Appointed The Best Place In The World To Visit
Last year the New York Times named Cape Town the best place in the world to visit. The city also racked up some other great awards as well, including: World Design Capital of 2014, number two on Travel and Leisure’s list of top holiday destinations, and the second best African city to visit by TripAdvisor’s 2014 Travelers’ Choice awards.
4) Lion’s Head Wasn’t Actually Named For Its Felines
Lion’s Head does not actually take its name from being host to some big cats. The mountain was named by the 17th century Dutch settlers, who called the peak Leeuwen Kop (Lion’s Head) and its adjacent summit Leeuwen Staart (Lion’s Tail). It was believed that the space between the two peaks resemble a crouching lion.
5) Afrikaans Is The Most Widely Spoken Language
Although Afrikaans is one of the youngest languages in the world, it is actually the most widely spoken tongue in the Western Cape. IsiXhosa and English rank at number two and third on the list.
6) The Cape Floral Kingdom Is Home To Nearly 7,000 Unique Plants
The Cape Floral Kingdom is the smallest and richest recognized floral area on the planet. There are 9,600 species of plant life that are found in this kingdom, 70% of which occur nowhere else in the world. These unique plants include: honey buchu, peninsula snapdragon and Good Hope satinflower.
7) The Castle Of Good Hope Once Had A Sea View
Built between 1666 and 1679, the Castle of Good Hope is the oldest colonial building in South Africa. The castle used to be a fort and served as a welcoming port for sailors traveling around the Cape. Over the years, the Castle’s surrounding landscape has been transformed. There was once a time when waves lapping at the entry point. The later moved the entrance for this reason.