Quotable quotes

Historic Cape Town

“Perhaps it was history that ordained that it be here, at the Cape of Good Hope, that we should lay the foundation stone of our new nation. For it was here at this Cape, over three centuries ago, that there began the fateful convergence of the peoples of Africa, Europe and Asia on these shores.” – Former President Nelson Mandela, during his inauguration speech on May 9, 1994

“This cape is the most stately thing and the fairest cape we saw in the whole circumference of the earth.” – From the journal of Sir Francis Drake, on seeing the Cape for the first time, 1580

“This is a pretty and singular town; it lies at the foot of an enormous wall (the Table Mountain), which reaches into the clouds, and makes a most imposing barrier. Cape Town is a great inn, on the great highway to the east.” – Charles Darwin in a letter to his sister, Catherine, 1836

“Cape Town is a city of great beauty shaped by its history, people and in particular by its natural setting and cultural resources. The city has a rich heritage of buildings and urban environments, places of memory, struggle history sites, as well as natural, rural and cultural landscapes. Our history is understood ... through the written word, or the stories, customs and beliefs we inherit, or the physical legacy of the landscape we live in. Prestwich Memorial provides a platform for the story of the people who lived and worked in District One from the early 1800s and their subsequent displacement from the area. The memorial also tells the story of burials in the formal and informal burial grounds in the area and provides a final resting place, in the form of an ossuary, to the human remains found in the area.” – Fagmee Jacobs, Project Co-ordinator Environmental and Heritage Management, City of Cape Town, on the significance of Prestwich Memorial as part of Cape Town’s heritage

“This is a city whose people tasted non-racialism long before the rest of South Africa. As early as the 19th Century, black and coloured people had the vote in the Cape.” – Western Cape Premier Helen Zille

Adventure Cape Town

“Done with a nice three-hour ride. I’ve heard many times before that Cape Town is stunning. That was no lie. What a place.” – Cycling legend Lance Armstrong, writing on social network Twitter, after his first cycle in Cape Town on March 9, 2010

Natural Cape Town

Sunset from the top of Table Mountain. Photo courtesy Flowcomm

“During the many years of incarceration on Robben Island, we often looked across Table Mountain at its magnificent silhouette … To us on Robben Island, Table Mountain was a beacon of hope. It represented the mainland to which we knew we would one day return.” – Former President Nelson Mandela

“The view from Signal Hill is absolutely priceless. I love sitting on a rock with a glass of good South African wine, watching an awesome sunset.” – Premier of the Western Cape Helen Zille

“Groot Constantia is the most peaceful place on earth. I never get tired of going there. It’s rarely overcrowded and has such a calming effect on whomever goes there – I think it has something to do with the fact that so much of our country’s history began in that spot. In summer and in winter it’s the perfect place to hide.” – Nicky Greenwall, television producer and presenter

“I am an African. I owe my being to the hills and the valleys, the mountains and the glades, the rivers, the deserts, the trees, the flowers, the seas and the ever-changing seasons that define the face of our native land.” – Former President Thabo Mbeki, 1996

Business Cape Town

“Cape Town is a key economic centre with great opportunities for growth and development and the decision to locate our office in the central city was not difficult.” – Selwyn Hockey, a partner at Webber Wentzel Attorneys in an interview, on why they chose Cape Town as the location for their regional office

“The use of public transport is encouraged in Singapore, not only through the easy access to it and its low cost, but also because duties on imported cars are about 200%, making them two to three times more expensive than in South Africa. Densification, mixed-use property developments and the taxing of cars to improve public transport are all lessons we can learn.” – Accelerate Cape Town CEO Guy Lundy, on development lessons learnt from Singapore after a recent visit to this city

“As one of the top economic contributors to the Western Cape region, tourism is essential to our economic well being.” – Felicity Purchase, executive mayoral committee member for economic development and tourism

Creative Cape Town

“Creativity happens on the boundaries, and a place like Cape Town is uniquely positioned. It’s a melting pot of cultures and people, with a rich history as well as a focus on modernity.” – South African entrepreneur Mark Shuttleworth, on why Cape Town is an ideal World Design Capital

Sustainable Cape Town

“South Africa is a country built on possibility. Possibility lies in making a difference and creating value from a situation – without denying that certain issues exist.” – Benjamin Zander, Boston Philharmonic Orchestra conductor

Cultural Cape Town

Keyboard player at a hip hop event in Cape Town. Photo courtesy By Nar8iv / Scott W

“… this child who just wanted to play in the sun at Nyanga is everywhere, the child grown to a man treks through all Africa, the child grown into a giant journeys through the whole world, without a pass.”
– Excerpt from The Child, written by Ingrid Jonker and read by former President Nelson Mandela at the opening of the first democratic Parliament on May 24, 1994

“What makes this my Cape Town is the feeling I get when walking its streets. No matter whether it be day or night, the languages it speaks, the faces it juxtaposes, the tensions it bridges – all these force their way, somehow or other, into the music I compose. It is the only walking city we have in the country – let it be more so, enhancing the livelihoods that bring our streets to life. That is how to ensure our future.” – Neo Muyanga, co-founder of the acoustic guitar duo Blk Sonshine and famed composer and co-curator of the Pan African Space Station

“My favourite South African phenomenon is the taxi gaartjie [conductor], endemic to Cape Town. He can often be heard shouting “Mowbray, Cape Teeeeeeeoooooown” out of the side of an overcrowded minibus or “Jou ma se Porsche” while speeding through Constantia.” – Nik Rabinowitz, comedian

“The Mother City of South Africa is a bridge which connects us to the whole world. Cape Town is a vibrant city with a tourist-friendly climate. Cape Town will fill up your senses." – The famous Eggman, Gregory da Silva, on what it means to him to be Capetonian

Volunteer Cape Town

“International volunteers leave their mark in South Africa, not only by dedicating their time and energy to a community or conservation project, but also through the positive contribution they make in supporting local businesses, tourism operators, craftsmen and women, and the many jobs that are created and sustained by purchases they make, and activities they take part in while they are here.

"When managed correctly, voluntourism ticks all the boxes when it comes to satisfying the criteria for responsible tourism, bringing visitors to areas of the country outside the traditional tourist routes, and providing a sustainable means for NGO projects to develop and employ local people.” – Ed Scott, Project Coordinator for Via Volunteers, on the value of voluntourism

Tourism Cape Town

“To be ranked first out of all cities in the world, and against global destinations of this calibre, speaks volumes about the strength of our offering. It is especially exciting for me that these results are based on the experiences of travellers who have visited the various destinations.” – Western Cape Tourism Minister Alan Winde, on the announcement that Cape Town was the TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice No.1 destination for 2011