Cape Town

Cape Town (Afrikaans: Kaapstad; [ˈkɑːpstat], Xhosa: iKapa) is one of South Africa's three capital cities, serving as the seat of the Parliament of South Africa.[7] It is the legislative capital of the country, the oldest city in the country, and the second largest (after the city Johannesburg). Colloquially named the Mother City,[8][9] it is the largest city of the Western Cape province,[10] and is managed by the City of Cape Town metropolitan municipality. The other two capitals are Pretoria, the executive capital, located in Gauteng, where the Presidency is based, and Bloemfontein, the judicial capital in the Free State, where the Supreme Court of Appeal is located.[11]

Cape Town
Mother City, Tavern of the Seas, West side
Spes Bona (Latin for "Good Hope")
Cape Town
Cape Town
Cape Town
Coordinates: 33°55′31″S 18°25′26″E
Country South Africa
Province Western Cape
MunicipalityCity of Cape Town
Municipal government1839
  TypeMetropolitan municipality
  MayorGeordin Hill-Lewis (DA)
  Deputy MayorEddie Andrews (DA)
  Total2,461 km2 (950 sq mi)
Highest elevation
1,590.4 m (5,217.8 ft)
Lowest elevation
0 m (0 ft)
  Total4,710,000 (urban 433,688)
4,005,016 (metro)
Racial makeup (2023)[4]
First languages (2011)
Time zoneUTC+2 (SAST)
Postal codes (street)
PO box
GMP (2011)US$78.7 billion[6]
GMP per capita (2011)US$19,656[6]

The city is known for its harbour, for its natural setting in the Cape Floristic Region, and for landmarks such as Table Mountain and Cape Point. Cape Town is home to 66% of the Western Cape's population.[12] In 2014, Cape Town was named the best place in the world to visit by both The New York Times[13] and The Daily Telegraph.[14]

Located on the shore of Table Bay, the City Bowl area of Cape Town, is the oldest urban area in the Western Cape, with a significant cultural heritage. It was founded by the Dutch East India Company (VOC) as a supply station for Dutch ships sailing to East Africa, India, and the Far East. Jan van Riebeeck's arrival on 6 April 1652 established the VOC Cape Colony, the first permanent European settlement in South Africa. Cape Town 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 southern Africa.

The city has a long coastline on the Atlantic Ocean, which includes False Bay, and extends to the Hottentots Holland mountains in the East. The Table Mountain National Park is within the city boundaries and there are several other nature reserves and marine protected areas within and adjacent to the city, protecting the diverse terrestrial and marine natural environment.

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