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June 22, 2009

It’s fynbos season in the Cape

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Photo courtesy Robert Wallace

One of the many reasons to love the Mother City in winter is that it’s fynbos season. This means that, in a number of areas around Cape Town, you will find an abundance of strikingly beautiful indigenous plants and flowers.

Fynbos (meaning “fine bush”) is a group of flora endemic to a small area of South Africa’s Western Cape.

Capetonians will tell you that fynbos is one of the many treasures of the Cape – not only because of its beauty but because it constitutes one of the six floral kingdoms in the world all on its own. This is particularly noteworthy because, as the smallest floral kingdom in the world, it is the only one occurring entirely within one country. 

In acknowledgement of this, the Cape Floral Kingdom was declared a World Heritage Site by Unesco in 2004.

The best places to see fynbos around Cape Town are on the slopes of Table Mountain, at Cape Point and in the Kirstenbosch National Botanic Gardens.

Fynbos adds a welcome splash of colour to hikes around the Cape Peninsula – and there’s no better time to see it than in winter.

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