By Lee Daley.
The popular Forbes.com website named Cape Town one of the world’s most beautiful cities, ranking it favorably with Paris, London, Venice and Sydney Host city to the upcoming 2010 World Cup Soccer Games, Cape Town’s welcome mat is out.
According to one of the website’s judges, Raymond Levitt of Stanford University, “Renowned English sea navigator, Sir Francis Drake, once referred to Cape Town as the fairest cape in the world. The city houses the Kirtenbosch Botanical Gardens, while the top of Table Mountain offers a breathtaking view of the city from roughly 3,500 feet above sea level.”
Levitt describes Cape Town as leaving “a manageable ecological footprint” due its compact size.
A unique mix of African, European and Asian traditions creates Cape Town’s cultural diversity. The downtown’s vibe buzzes with the sounds and crafts of Africa blended with a European heritage.
Nature’s handiwork wraps the package in abundant green spaces and gardens topped by Table Mountain standing tall over the waterfront.
Where to Stay: On the waterfront, the Victoria and Alfred Hotel offers outstanding service in a secure and easy environment. Surrounding cafes, bars, shops, cinema, craft markets and a world-class aquarium make the waterfront area a great base from which to explore the city.
At the waterfront, you can board the Robben Island ferry to the prison
site where Nelson Mandela and others struggled against apartheid. Former prisoners recount their time spent here as part of the tour. You’ll even see Mandela’s actual prison cell. A riveting journey into South Africa’s recent past, the tour gives those who take it a deeper appreciation for how far Cape Town has come.