Cape Town Diamond Museum
Marilyn Monroe summed it up when she sang: "Diamonds are a girl's best friend". These precious gemstones form one of the bastions of South Africa's economy. Diamonds were discovered in South Africa in 1867 and it wasn't long before the country was providing up to 95 percent of the world's supply.
A guided tour of the Cape Town Diamond Museum uncovers the mystery of this shiny jewel, delving into the history of the industry and showing how diamonds are formed, mined and processed.
Diamonds were formed three-billion years ago by molecular-changing heat – around 1 300 °C – deep within the Earth’s crust. The Cape Town Diamond Museum is home to many interesting facts such as this one.
Located at the V&A Waterfront, the Cape Town Diamond Museum offers insight into the story of diamonds – a story that changed the course of history. How were diamonds formed? How were they discovered? How are they transformed from rough to the polished gems we admire so much?
The museum, which is also a non-profit organisation, is “dedicated to creating a new appreciation for diamonds” by presenting the amazing story of how they came to be and what we do with them.
The process of cutting and polishing is fascinating in itself, from marking and sawing to brillianteering, all of which ensure symmetry and perfect refraction. These are highly developed skills that have been refined over many years. In South Africa, diamonds have had a significant effect on the country’s economic and political landscape ever since the first discovery in 1867 (another topic that the museum explores in depth).
Of course, diamonds are best known for their aesthetic value, and the museum also explores the beauty of these objects. For example, a life-size replica of the Cullinan (the largest gem-quality diamond ever found), as well as the Hope, Excelsior and (the wonderfully-named) Eureka diamonds can be found at the museum, which traces their history and significance.
Open from 09h00 to 21h00, 7 days a week
If you are looking for a place where you can taste the Cape’s finest wines, dine in one of two modern restaurants and still have a plethora of things to do, then the Steenberg Vineyards are for you.
Diamonds were formed three billion years ago by molecular-changing heat of around 1 300 °C, deep within the Earth’s crust. If you didn’t know that, then you have not been to the Cape Town Diamond Museum.
Cape Town sport enthusiasts are lucky enough to live in the city that is home to the South African Rugby Museum. Located just a drop kick away from the Newlands Rugby Stadium in the Southern Suburbs of Cape Town, home of the Stormers, the South African Rugby Museum is a full of tokens, collector’s items, memorabilia and history of one of the country’s most watched sports.
As the oldest city in South Africa, Cape Town boasts a number of historical buildings, many of which are still in use today and open to visitors. The city’s architecture is a testament to the many varying influences in South Africa’s unique history.
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