Bo Kaap District Cape Town

Attraction

The Bo-Kaap - Cape Town

Explore Cape Town's most vibrant neighbourhood

Cape Town is a colourful city but the Bo-Kaap is, quite literally, its most vibrant neighbourhood. Bo-Kaap translates from Afrikaans to ‘above the Cape’, due to the area lying on the slopes of Signal Hill on Table Mountain. 

The Bo-Kaap is the oldest residential area in Cape Town and is characterised by its brightly coloured houses and cobble-stoned streets that date back to the 18th century. Most of the residents who live in the Bo-Kaap are descendants of Malaysian, Indonesia, Indian and Sri Lankan slaves that were imported here in the 16th and 17th centuries and today, the community remains largely Muslim with a distinct Cape Malay culture founded through intermarriage between slaves from the south and southeast Asian countries to native Africans.

The Bo-Kaap is also characterised by its love of music, dance and food, with many traditional South African dishes originating from Cape Malays, including tomato bredie and koeksisters, a syrupy-sweet doughnut.

Pay a visit to this kaleidoscopic neighbourhood and be dazzled by the vivid pinks, oranges, turquoises and yellows of the buildings, before meeting with and getting to know the friendly, multicultural locals. 

 

Essential Information

  • Ages:  All ages
  • Duration:  Half a day, minimum