January 17, 2009
Cape Town cat – Flickr pic of the day
With its brightly coloured houses at the foot of Signal Hill, Bo-Kaap is the spiritual home of the Cape’s Muslim community.
Bo-Kaap has a fascinating history. Many of the residents are descendants of the slaves from Malaysia, Indonesia and elsewhere in Africa who were imported to the Cape of Good Hope by the Dutch during the 16th and 17th centuries.
The slaves were known as “Cape Malays” (which is not essentially true as most of the residents are not entirely of Malaysian descent). However the term has stuck and Bo-Kaap is known as the Cape Malay Quarter.
The best place to find out about the history of the area is the quaint Bo-Kaap Museum (+27 21 481 3939).
The museum building dates back to the 1760s and is the oldest house in the area (still in its original form). The main focus is the contribution made by early Muslim settlers, and the house depicts a recreation of the lives of a typical Malay family.
Zaahir is an IT professional and amateur photographer. His photostream showcases the interesting architecture of Cape Town. This photograph was taken with a Canon EOS 400D camera.
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Image © Zaahir Hamid 2009