Colonial history of Cape Town


The Castle of Good Hope. Source: Castle of Good Hope.

Cape Town, also known as the 'Mother City', is situated along the Cape Peninsula in the Western Cape Province of South Africa. The town is the legislative capital of the Republic of South Africa and the provincial capital of the Western Cape. Cape Town was the first area of European settlement in Southern Africa which may help to explain its nickname the 'Mother City'. Some of the town's landmarks include Table Mountain, Robben Island and the Castle among others.

The emergence of the town at the Cape was as a result of the strategic location of the Cape on the trade route between Europe and Asia. Consequently, people from various parts of Europe, other parts of the world such as Asia and within South Africa landed at the Cape both by choice and by force. Thus, the tapestry of cultures that exists in Cape Town reflects the history of people from various regions of the world and South Africa who shaped its existence.

Last updated : 12-Dec-2011

This article was produced for South African History Online on 30-Mar-2011