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Cape Town ( ; ) is the second most populous city in South Africa, and the largest in land area, forming part of the City of Cape Townmarker metropolitan municipality. It is the provincial capital of the Western Cape, as well as the legislative capital of South Africa, where the National Parliamentmarker and many government offices are situated. Cape Town is famous for its harbourmarker as well as its natural setting in the Cape floral kingdommarker, including such well-known landmarks as Table Mountainmarker and Cape Pointmarker. Cape Town is Africa's most popular destination for tourism.

Located on the shore of Table Baymarker, Cape Town was originally developed by the Dutch East India Company as a victualling (supply) station for Dutchmarker ships sailing to Eastern Africa, Indiamarker, and the Far East. Jan van Riebeeck's arrival on 6 April 1652 established the first permanent European settlement in South Africa. Cape Town quickly outgrew its original purpose as the first European outpost at the Castle of Good Hopemarker, becoming the economic and cultural hub of the Cape Colony. Until the Witwatersrand Gold Rush and the development of Johannesburgmarker, Cape Town was the largest city in South Africa.

 the city had an estimated population of 3.5 million. Cape Town's land area of   is larger than other South African cities, resulting in a comparatively lower population density of  .


History

There is no certainty as to when humans first occupied the area prior to the first visits of Europeans in the 15th century. The earliest known remnants 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 Portuguesemarker explorer Bartolomeu Dias in 1486. Vasco da Gama recorded a sighting of the Cape of Good Hopemarker in 1497, and the area did not have regular contact with Europeans until 1652, when Jan van Riebeeck and other employees of the Dutch East India Company ( , VOC) were sent to the Cape to establish a way-station for ships travelling to the Dutch East Indiesmarker, and the Redout Duijnhoop (later replaced by the Castle of Good Hopemarker). The city grew slowly during this period, as it was hard to find adequate labour. This labour shortage prompted the city to import slaves from Indonesiamarker and Madagascarmarker. Many of these became ancestors of the first Cape Coloured communities.

During the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic wars, the Netherlands was repeatedly occupied by France, and Great Britainmarker moved to take control of Dutch colonies. Britain captured Cape Town in 1795, but the Cape was returned to the Netherlands by treaty in 1803. British forces occupied the Cape again in 1806 following the battle of Bloubergstrandmarker. In the Anglo-Dutch Treaty of 1814, Cape Town was permanently ceded to Britain. It became the capital of the newly formed Cape Colony, whose territory expanded very substantially through the 1800s.

The discovery of diamonds in Griqualand West in 1869, and the Witwatersrand Gold Rush in 1886, prompted a flood of immigrants to South Africa. Conflicts between the Boer republics in the interior and the British colonial government resulted in the Second Boer War of 1899-1901, which Britain won. In 1910, Britain established the Union of South Africa, which unified the Cape Colony with the two defeated Boer Republics and the British colony of Natal. Cape Town became the legislative capital of the Union, and later of the Republic of South Africa.

In the 1948 national elections, the National Party won on a platform of apartheid (racial segregation) under the slogan of "swart gevaar". This led to the Group Areas Act, which classified all areas according to race. Formerly multi-racial suburbs of Cape Town were either purged of unlawful residents or demolished. The most infamous example of this in Cape Town was District Sixmarker. 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 Cape Flats and Lavendar Hill. Under apartheid, the Cape was considered a "Coloured labour preference area", to the exclusion of "Bantus", i.e. blacks.

Cape Town was home to many leaders of the anti-apartheid movement. On Robben Islandmarker, a former penitentiary island 10 kilometres from the city, many famous political prisoners were held for years. In one of the most famous moments marking the end of apartheid, Nelson Mandela made his first public speech in decades on 11 February 1990 from the balcony of Cape Town City Hallmarker hours after being released. 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 Victoria & Alfred Waterfront features statues of South Africa's four Nobel Peace Prize winners - Albert Luthuli, Desmond Tutu, F.W. de Klerk and Nelson Mandela. Since 1994, the city has struggled with problems such as HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, a surge in violent drug-related crime and more recent xenophobic violence. At the same time, the economy has surged to unprecedented levels due to the boom in the tourism and the real estate industries.

Geography

Cape Town seen from Spot satellite
The centre of Cape Town is located at the northern end of the Cape Peninsulamarker. Table Mountainmarker forms a dramatic backdrop to the City Bowlmarker, with its plateau over high; it is surrounded by near-vertical cliffs, Devil's Peakmarker and Lion's Headmarker. Sometimes a thin strip of cloud forms over the mountain, and owing to its appearance, it is colloquially known as the "tablecloth". The peninsula consists of a dramatic mountainous spine jutting southwards into the Atlantic Oceanmarker, ending at Cape Pointmarker. There are over 70 peaks above (the American definition of a mountain) within Cape Town's official city limits. Many of the suburbs of Cape Town are on the large plain of the Cape Flats, which joins the peninsula to the mainland. The Cape Flats lie on what is known as a rising marine plain, consisting mostly of sandy geology which shows that at one point Table Mountain itself was an island.

Climate

The Cape Peninsulamarker has a Mediterranean climate, as does most of Californiamarker, South Western Australia and much of the Mediterraneanmarker. This climate type means the city has well-defined seasons. In winter time, which lasts from May to September, large cold fronts come across from the Atlantic Oceanmarker with heavy precipitation and strong north-westerly winds. The winter months are cool, with an average minimum temperature of 7 °C (45 °F) and an average maximum of around 17 °C (63 °F). Most of the city's annual rainfall occurs in wintertime, but due to the mountainous topography of the city, rainfall amounts for specific areas can vary dramatically. Newlandsmarker, to the south of the city, is the wettest suburb in South Africa. The valleys and coastal plains average 515 millimetres (20 in) of rain per annum, while mountain areas can average as much as 1,500 millimetres (60 in) per annum.

Summer, which lasts from November to March, is warm and dry. The Peninsula gets frequent strong winds from the south-east, known locally as the Cape Doctor, because it blows away pollution and cleans the air. The south-easterly wind is caused by a high-pressure system which sits in the South Atlanticmarker to the west of Cape Town, known as the South-Atlantic High. Summer temperatures are mild, with an average maximum of . Cape Town can be uncomfortably hot when the Berg Wind, meaning "mountain wind" blows from the Karoo interior for a couple of weeks in February or early March.

Cape Town's weather compares very closely to San Franciscomarker, except for temperature. Cape Town receives fractionally more sunlight hours than San Francisco (3070 vs 3030 hours), fractionally less rainfall (515mm vs 518mm) and fractionally less wind (an average 3 on the Beaufort scale with just under 50% wind probability, vs an average low Beaufort 4 at just over 50% wind probability). However, Cape Town is significantly warmer, with an annual average ambient air temperature of 19 °C (66 °F) versus San Francisco's 13 °C (55 °F). Comparing this to other Mediterranean climates, this is warm but not hot. This temperature is significantly more than Barcelona (16 °C (61 °F), slightly more than Romemarker (18 °C (64 °F), slightly less than Palermomarker or Athensmarker (20 °C (68 °F) and the same as Naplesmarker. Cape Town receives far more light than any major city in the Mediterranean however, with Madridmarker (the sunniest large city in Europe) receiving only 2830 hours per year.

Water temperatures range greatly, between 10 °C (50 °F) on the Atlantic Seaboard, to 22°C (72°F) in False bay. Average annual Ocean temperatures are between (13 °C (55 °F) on the Atlantic Seaboard (similar to Californian waters, such as San Franciscomarker or Big Surmarker), and (17 °C (63 °F) in False Bay (similar to Northern Mediterranean temperatures, such as Nicemarker or Monte Carlomarker).

Suburbs

City Bowl

Map of the City Bowl.
The City Bowl is a natural amphitheatre-shaped area bordered by Table Baymarker and defined by the mountains of Signal Hillmarker, Lion's Headmarker, Table Mountainmarker and Devil's Peakmarker.

The area includes the central business district of Cape Town, the harbour, the Company Gardens, and the residential suburbs of De Waterkantmarker, Devil's Peakmarker, District Sixmarker, Zonnebloem, Gardensmarker, Higgovale, Oranjezichtmarker, Schotsche Kloof, Tamboerskloof, University Estatemarker, Vredehoekmarker, Walmer Estate and Woodstockmarker.

View of City Bowl from Lions Head.


Northern Suburbs

The Northern Suburbs include Bellvillemarker, Bothasig, Brackenfellmarker, Brooklyn, Durbanvillemarker, Edgemeadmarker, Elsie's Rivermarker, Facreton, Goodwood, Kensington, Kraaifontein, Kuils River, Maitland, Monte Vistamarker, Panorama, Parowmarker, Thornton, Table View, and Welgemoed.

Atlantic Seaboard

The Atlantic Seaboard includes Bantry Baymarker, Camps Baymarker, Cliftonmarker, Fresnaye, Green Pointmarker, Hout Baymarker, Llandudnomarker, Mouille Pointmarker, Sea Pointmarker, and Three Anchor Bay.

Southern Suburbs

The Southern Suburbs include Rondeboschmarker, Claremontmarker, Plumsteadmarker, Wynbergmarker, Newlandsmarker, Constantia and Bishopscourtmarker.

South Peninsula

The South Peninsula is generally regarded as the area south of Muizenberg on the Indian Oceanmarker and Noordhoekmarker on the Atlantic Oceanmarker, all the way to Cape Pointmarker. Until recently quite rural, 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, Clovelly, Fish Hoekmarker, Glencairn, Kalk Baymarker, Kommetjiemarker, Masiphumelele, Muizenbergmarker, Noordhoekmarker, Ocean View, Scarboroughmarker, Simon's Townmarker, St James,Sunnydale, and Sun Valley.

Cape Flats

The Cape Flats is an expansive, low-lying, flat area situated to the southeast of the central business district of Cape Townmarker. To most people in Cape Town, the area is known simply as 'The Flats'.



Described by some as 'apartheid's dumping ground', from the 1950s the area became home to people the apartheid government designated as non-White. Race-based legislation such as the Group Areas Act and pass laws either forced non-white people out of more central urban areas designated for white people and into government-built townships in the Flats, or made living in the area illegal, forcing many people designated as Black into informal settlements elsewhere in the Flats. The Flats have since then been home to much of the population of Greater Cape Town.

West Coast

The West Coast includes Bloubergstrandmarker, Milnertonmarker, Tableview, and West Beach

Government



Cape town's local government is the City of Cape Townmarker, which is a metropolitan municipality. Cape Town is governed by a 210-member city council. The city is divided into 105 electoral wards; each ward directly elects one member of the council, whilst the other 105 councillors are elected by a party-list proportional representation system. The Executive Mayor and Executive Deputy Mayor are chosen by the city council.

In the most recent local government elections, the Democratic Alliance (DA) was the largest single party with 90 of the 210 seats on the council, ahead of the African National Congress's 81 seats, but with no party holding a majority. After a number of party defections and byelection successes, the DA now has 97 members. The DA is currently in a coalition with the Independent Democrats and the United Democratic Movement. The coalition has 114 members, giving it a comfortable majority.

Former Executive Mayor Helen Zille of the Democratic Alliance resigned on 29 April 2009 as a result of her election to the Western Cape Provincial Parliament and subsequent election as Premier of the Western Cape Province. The City Council elected Dan Plato (DA) as the new Executive Mayor and Ian Neilson (DA) as the new Executive Deputy Mayor. The new Mayor has appointed a new Mayoral Committee.

Demographics

Geographical distribution of home languages in Cape Town
According to the South African National Census of 2001, the population of Cape Town is 2,893,251 people. There are 759,767 formal households, of which 87.4% have a flush or chemical toilet, and 94.4% have refuse removed by the municipality at least once a week. 80.1% of households use electricity as the main source of energy. 16.1% of households are headed by one person.

Coloured people account for 48.13% of the population, followed by Black Africans at 31%, Whites at 18.75%, and Asians at 1.43%. 46.6% of the population is under the age of 24, whilst 5% are over the age of 65. The median age in the city is 26 years old, and for every 100 females, there are 92.4 males. 19.4% of city residents are unemployed; 58.3% of the unemployed are black, 38.1% are Coloured, 3.1% are White and 0.5% are Asian.

41.4% of Cape Town residents speak Afrikaans at home, 28.7% speak Xhosa, 27.9% speak English, 0.7% speak Sotho, 0.3% speak Zulu, 0.1% speak Tswana and 0.7% of the population speaks a non-official language at home. 76.6% of residents are Christian, 10.7% have no religion, 9.7% are Muslim, 0.5% are Jewish and 0.2% are Hindu. 2.3% have other or undetermined beliefs.

4.2% of residents aged 20 and over have received no schooling; 11.8% have had some primary school; 7.1% have completed only primary school; 38.9% have had some high school education; 25.4% have finished only high school and 12.6% have an education higher than the high school level. Overall, 38.0% of residents have completed high school. The median annual income of working adults aged 20–65 is ZAR 25 774. Males have a median annual income of ZAR 27 406 versus ZAR 22 265 for females.

Economy

Cape Town foreshore area with the ABSA Bank building in the background.
Cape Town is the economic centre of the Western Cape Province, South Africa's second main economic centre and even Africa's second or third main economic hub city. It serves as the regional manufacturing centre in the Western Cape. It also has the primary harbour and airport in the Western Cape. The large government presence in the city, both as the capital of the Western Cape and the seat of the National Parliamentmarker, has led to increased revenue and growth in industries that serve the government. Cape Town hosts many conferences, particularly in the recently-expanded Cape Town International Convention Centremarker, which opened in June 2003. At the moment, as South Africa's second biggest city, Cape Town contains more high rise buildings than South Africa's biggest city metropolitan, Johannesburg.

Cape Town has recently enjoyed a booming real estate and construction market, because of the 2010 World Cup as well as many people buying summer homes in the city or relocating there permanently. Cape Town will host 9 World Cup matches: Six 1st round matches, one second round, one quarter final and a semi final at the 2010 World Cup. 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. The central business district is expecting a private-sector investment influx of ZAR30-35billion (US$5–6billion) over the next 5 years, confirmed by the Partnership. . Its known that a 35 floor building called Portside will be built in the CBD. And two other 26+ floor buildings will be built near to the train station.

Cape Town has four major commercial nodes, with Cape Town Central Business District containing the majority of job opportunities and office space. Century Citymarker, the Bellvillemarker/TygerValley strip and Claremontmarker 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.

Much of the produce is handled through the Port of Cape Townmarker or Cape Town International Airportmarker. Most major shipbuilding companies have offices and manufacturing locations in Cape Town. The Province is also a centre of energy development for the country, with the existing Koeberg nuclear power stationmarker providing energy for the Western Cape's needs. Recently, oil explorers have discovered oil and natural gas off the coast in the Atlantic Ocean.

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 2004, over 1.5 million international tourists visited the area.

The mining industry in Cape Town has been booming for the last 6 years. 6000 miners are now employed in the mining industry since 2002.

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 18-64 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.

Tourism

Clifton 4th Beach


Cape Town is not only the most popular international tourist destination in South Africa, it is Africa's main tourist destination even overtaking Cairomarker . This is due to its good climate, natural setting, and well-developed infrastructure. The city has several well-known natural features that attract tourists, most notably Table Mountainmarker, which forms a large part of the Table Mountain National Parkmarker and is the back end of the City Bowlmarker. Reaching the top of the mountain can be achieved either by hiking up, or by taking the Table Mountain Cablewaymarker. Cape Pointmarker is recognised as the dramatic headland at the end of the Cape Peninsulamarker. Many tourists also drive along Chapman's Peak Drivemarker, a narrow road that links Noordhoekmarker with Hout Baymarker, for the views of the Atlantic Ocean and nearby mountains. It is possible to either drive or hike up Signal Hillmarker for closer views of the City Bowl and Table Mountain.

Many tourists also visit 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 Californiamarker (around ), the False Bay coast is very much warmer, averaging between annually. This is similar to water temperatures in much of the Northern Mediterraneanmarker (for example Nicemarker). In Summer, False bay water averages slightly over , with a comon high. Beaches located on the Atlantic Coast tend to have very cold water due to the Benguela current which originates from the Southern Oceanmarker, whilst the water at False Baymarker beaches may be warmer by up to at the same moment due to the influence of the warm Agulhas current, and the surface warming effects of the South Easter wind.

Both coasts are equally popular, although the beaches in affluent Cliftonmarker and elsewhere on the Atlantic Coast are better developed with restaurants and cafés, with a particularly vibrant strip of restaurants and bars accessible to the beach at Camps Baymarker. Boulders Beachmarker 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 Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, built on top of part of the docks of the Port of Cape Townmarker, is one of the city's most popular shopping venues, with several hundred shops and the Two Oceans Aquariummarker. Part of the charm of the V&A, as it is locally known, is that the Port continues to operate and visitors can watch ships enter and leave. The V&A also hosts the Nelson Mandela Gateway, through which ferries depart for Robben Islandmarker. It is possible to take a ferry from the V&A to Hout Baymarker, Simon's Townmarker and the Cape Fur Seal colonies on Seal and Duiker Islands. Several companies offer tours of the Cape Flats, a mostly Coloured township, and Khayelitshamarker, a mostly black township. An option is to sleep overnight in Cape Town's townships. There are several B&Bs where you can spend a safe and real African night.

Cape Town is noted for its architectural heritage, with the highest density of Cape Dutch style buildings in the world. Cape Dutch style, which combines the architectural traditions of the Netherlands, Germany and France, is most visible in Constantiamarker, the old government buildings in the Central Business District, and along Long Streetmarker. The annual Cape Town Minstrel Carnival, also known by its Afrikaans name of Kaapse Klopse, is a large minstrel festival held annually on January 2 or "Tweede Nuwe Jaar" (Afrikaans: Second New Year). Competing teams of minstrels parade in brightly coloured costumes, either carrying colourful umbrellas or playing an array of musical instruments. The Artscape Theatre Centremarker is the main performing arts venue in Cape Town.
Cape Town's historical streets and buildings are a major draw for tourists
Cape Town's transport system links it to the rest of South Africa; it serves as the gateway to other destinations within the province. The Cape Winelands and in particular the towns of Stellenboschmarker, Paarlmarker and Franschhoekmarker are popular day trips from the city for sightseeing and wine tasting. Whale watching is popular amongst tourists: Southern Right Whales and Humpback Whales are seen off the coast during the breeding season (August to November) and Bryde's Whales and Killer Whale can be seen any time of the year. The nearby town of Hermanusmarker is known for its Whale Festival, but whales can also be seen in False Bay. Heaviside's dolphins are endemic to the area and can be seen from the coast north of Cape Town; Dusky dolphins live along the same coast and can occasionally be seen from the ferry to Robben Island.

Approximately 1.5 million tourists visited in Cape Town during 2004, bringing in a total of R10 billion in revenue. The forecasts for 2006 anticipate 1.6 million tourists spending a total of R12 billion. The most popular areas for visitors to stay include Camps Baymarker, Sea Pointmarker, the V&A Waterfront, the City Bowlmarker, Hout Baymarker, Constantiamarker, Rondeboschmarker, Newlandsmarker, Somerset Westmarker, Hermanusmarker and Stellenboschmarker, as well.

Cape Town Tourism is the City of Cape Town's Official Regional Tourism Organisation, responsible for destination marketing, visitor and industry services. They offer a comprehensive service offering information and bookings for Cape Town attractions, tours and accommodation. You can visit their website on http://www.capetown.travel/

Communications and media

Several 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 Athlonemarker, the Atlantic Sun, the Constantiaberg Bulletin from Constantiaberg, the City Vision from Bellvillemarker, the False Bay Echo from False Baymarker, the Helderberg Sun from Helderbergmarker, the Plainsman from Michells Plain, the Sentinel News from Hout Bay, the Southern Mail from the Southern Peninsula, the Southern Suburbs Tatler from the Southern Suburbsmarker, 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 Xhosa.

Cape Town is a centre for broadcast media and has several radio stations that only broadcast within the city. 94.5 Kfm (94.5 MHz FM) and Good Hope FM (94–97 MHz 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 classical music and jazz. Bush Radio is a community radio station (89.5 MHz FM). The Voice of the Cape (95.8 MHz FM) and Cape Talk (567 kHz MW) are the major talk radio stations in the city. The University of Cape Townmarker also runs its own radio station, UCT Radiomarker (104.5 MHz FM).

The SABC (South African Broadcasting Corporation) has a small presence in the city, with satellite studios located at Sea Pointmarker. e.tv has a greater presence, with a large complex located at Longkloof Studios in Gardensmarker. M-Net is not well represented with infrastructure within the city. 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 Johannesburgmarker.

Sport

Venue Sport Capacity Club(s)
Cape Town Stadiummarker Football/Rugby 69,070 N/A
Newlands Cricket Groundmarker Cricket 25,000 Cape Cobras, Western Province Cricket
Newlands Rugby Stadium Rugby 48,000 Stormers, Western Province
Athlone Stadiummarker Football 30,000 Santos Football Club
Philippi Stadium Football 5,000 Ajax CT
Bellville Velodromemarker Cycling (Track) 3,000 Western Province Cycling
Hartleyvale Hockey Centre Field Hockey 2,000 Western Province Hockey
Turfhall Stadium Softball 3,000 Western Province Softball
Good Hope Centre Various indoor sports 6,000 Various
Royal Cape Yacht Club Sailing N/A Royal Cape Yacht Club
Grand West Arena Various 6,000 N/A
Green Point Athletics Stadium Athletics,Football 5,000 N/A
Newlands Swimming Pool Swimming/Water Polo/Diving 2,000 WP Aquatics
Autshumato/Berg River Dam Rowing/Canoe-Kayak N/A N/A


Cape Town's most popular sports by participation are cricket, association football, swimming, and rugby union. In rugby union, Cape Town is the home of the Western Province side, who play at Newlands Stadiummarker and compete in the Currie Cup. In addition, Western Province players (along with some from Wellington's Boland Cavaliers) comprise the Stormers in the Southern Hemispheremarker's Super 14 competition. Cape Town also regularly hosts the national team, the Springboks, and hosted matches during the 1995 Rugby World Cup, including a semi-final.

Association football, which is better known as soccer in South Africa, is also popular. Two clubs from Cape Town play in the Premier Soccer League (PSL), South Africa's premier league. These teams are Ajax Cape Town, which formed as a result of the 1999 amalgamation of the Seven Stars and the Cape Town Spurs; and Santos. Cape Town will also be the location of several of the matches of the FIFA 2010 World Cup including a semi-final, which is to be held in South Africa. The Mother City is building a new 70,000 seat stadium (Green Point Stadiummarker) in the Green Point area.

In cricket, the Cape Cobras represent Cape Town at the Newlands Cricket Groundmarker. The team is the result of an amalgamation of the Western Province Cricket and Boland Cricket teams. They take part in the Supersport and Standard Bank Cup Series. The Newlands Cricket Ground regularly hosts international matches.

Cape Town has Olympic aspirations: in 1996, Cape Town was one of the five candidate cities shortlisted by the IOCmarker to launch official candidatures to host the 2004 Summer Olympics. Although the games ultimately went to Athensmarker, Cape Town came in third place. There has been some speculation that Cape Town is seeking the South African Olympic Committee's nomination to be South Africa's bid city for the 2020 Summer Olympic Games.

Sports events

The city of Cape Town has vast experience in hosting major national and international sports events.

The Cape Argus Pick 'n Pay Cycle Tour is the world's largest individually timed cycle race and 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 109 km 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 has been the 1995 Rugby World Cup, 2003 ICC Cricket World Cup, and World Championships in various sports such as athletics, fencing, weightlifting, hockey, cycling, canoeing, gymnastics and others.

Cape Town is also a host city to the 2010 FIFA World Cup from 11 June to 11 July 2010, further enhancing its profile as a major events city. It is also one of the host cities of the 2009 Indian Premier League cricket tournament.

Education

Public 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" districts Metropole Central, North, South, and East which cover various areas of the city. There are also many private schools, both religious and secular, in Cape Town.

Tertiary education

Cape Town has a well-developed higher education system of public universities. Cape Town is served by three public universities: the University of Cape Townmarker (UCT), the University of the Western Capemarker (UWC) and the Cape Peninsula University of Technologymarker (CPUT). Stellenbosch Universitymarker, while not in the city itself, is 50 kilometres from the City Bowl and has additional campuses, such as the Tygerberg Faculty of 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 is 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 come into governmental power, some restructuring of Western Cape universities has taken place and as such, traditionally non-white universities have seen increased financing, which has benefitted the University of the Western Cape.

The public Cape Peninsula University of Technology was formed on January 1, 2005, when two separate institutions – Cape Technikonmarker and Peninsula Technikonmarker – 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.

Transport

Cape Town taxi rank above train station


Air
Cape Town International Airportmarker serves both domestic and international flights. It is the second-largest airport in South Africa and serves as a major gateway for travellers to the Cape region. Cape Town has direct flights to most cities in South Africa as well as a number of international 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 will increase in the lead-up to the 2010 FIFA World Cup. 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 space and hotels.

The Cape Town International Airport was among the winners of the World Travel Awards for being Africa's leading airport.

Sea
Cape Town has a long tradition as a port city. The Port of Cape Townmarker, the city's main port, is located in Table Baymarker directly to the north of the central business district. 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 Durbanmarker. In 2004, it handled 3,161 ships and 9.2 million tonnes of cargo.

Simon's Town Harbourmarker on the False Baymarker coast of the Cape Peninsulamarker is the main base of the South African Navy.

The Port of Cape Town (specifically the V&A Waterfront) made headlines worldwide during 2009 when plans to berth the iconic liner QE2 were announced. It is expected that QE2 will be located in the port for use as a floating hotel in time for the 2010 FIFA World Cup
Rail
The 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 Johannesburgmarker via Kimberleymarker and a weekly service to and from Durbanmarker via Kimberleymarker, Bloemfonteinmarker and Pietermaritzburgmarker. These trains terminate at Cape Town Railway Stationmarker and make a brief stop at Bellvillemarker. Cape Town is also one terminus of the luxury tourist-oriented Blue Train as well as the five-star Rovos Railmarker.

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.

Road
Three national roads start in Cape Town: the N1 which links Cape Town with Bloemfonteinmarker, Johannesburgmarker, Pretoriamarker and Zimbabwemarker; the N2 which links Cape Town with Port Elizabethmarker, East Londonmarker and Durbanmarker; and the N7 which links Cape Town with the Northern Cape Province and Namibiamarker. The N1 and N2 both start in the Central Business District, and split to the east of the CBD, with the N1 continuing to the north east and the N2 heading south east past Cape Town International Airportmarker. The N7 starts in Mitchells Plain and runs north, intersecting with the N1 and the N2 before leaving the city.

Cape Town also has a system of freeway and dual carriageway M-roads, which connect different parts of the city. The M3 splits from the N2 and runs to the south along the eastern slopes of Table Mountainmarker, connecting the City Bowl with Muizenbergmarker. The M5 splits from the N1 further east than the M3, and links the Cape Flats to the CBD. The R300, which is informally known as the Cape Flats Freeway, links Mitchells Plain with Bellvillemarker, the N1 and the N2.

Buses
Golden Arrow Bus Services operates scheduled bus services throughout the Cape Town metropolitan area. Several companies run long-distance bus services from Cape Town to the other cities in South Africa.

Taxis
Cape Town has two kinds of taxis: 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.

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, making for high casualty rates when minibuses are involved in accidents. Minibuses are generally owned and operated in fleets, and inter-operator violence flares up from time to time, especially as turf wars occur over lucrative taxi routes.

Twin towns—Sister cities

Cape Town has 9 sister cities, as listed below:
Country City
Aachenmarker
Buenos Airesmarker
Galvestonmarker
Haifamarker
Tunismarker
Nicemarker
Saint Petersburgmarker
San Franciscomarker
Londonmarker
Punemarker


See also



References

  1. http://www.1stweather.com/regional/climate/index_climate.shtml
  2. http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showthread.php?t=656514=
  3. http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showthread.php?t=466130=
  4. South Africa Announces Bid For 2020 Summer Olympic Games, Gamesbids.com
  5. http://www.chriscunard.com/today-QE2.htmQE2 Today: Cape Town date=2009|accessdate= 12 September 2009.


External links

Government


Other



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