Bo-Kaap - About the Neighbourhood

The Bo-Kaap is one of Cape Town’s most distinct neighbourhoods known for its vibrant, predominantly Muslim, Cape Malay community and its equally bold flat-roofed colourful houses and cobbled stone roads.

Situated at the foot of Signal Hill, on the fringe of the city centre, and formerly known as the Malay Quarter, the Bo-Kaap’s origins date back to the 1760s when numerous “huurhuisjes” (rental houses) were built and leased to slaves and political exiles brought here from other Dutch colonies in the east including Indonesia’s Batavia, Sumatra, Java and also East Africa. Most of these groups spoke some Malay, hence this new community becoming known as the Cape Malays.

The houses in the area are a mix of Cape Dutch and Georgian architecture and the bright colours, it is said, is attributed to the fact that while on lease, all the houses had to be white. When this rule was eventually lifted, and the slaves were allowed to buy the properties, all the houses were painted bright colours by their owners as an expression of their freedom.

When visiting this area be sure to go see the oldest mosque in South Africa – the Auwal Mosque in Dorp Street and the oldest building in the Bo-Kaap in Wale Street which currently houses the Bo-Kaap Museum. This is the best place to discover the real history of the area and to get a glimpse into the life of a typical Malay family.

Be sure to try a local cooking tour specialising in traditional Cape Malay treats and visit one of the eateries owned and run by families who are historically rooted in the area

Explore by interest in Bo-Kaap

Popular Attractions in Bo-Kaap

From Kirstenbosch Gardens, to Table Mountain Forests and home to Western Cape Rugby and Cricket, Newlands has so much to offer.

Places to Stay in Bo-Kaap

Newlands is one of the most affluent and beautiful neighbourhoods in Cape Town resting on the slopes of Table Mountain. There is a wide range of accommodation available. 

Places to Eat & Drink in Bo-Kaap

Newlands is home to some of the best restaurants and bars in the city. Whether you’re looking for a casual meal or a night out on the town, there’s something for everyone on offer.

Travel Inspiration

Looking for some travel inspiration for your next trip to Newlands? Here are some ideas to get you started:

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Heading to one of our beautiful beaches this summer? ☀️

We asked Stewart Seinifrom, Lifeguard Manager at The National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) to share some important beach safety tips. This is what he had to say…

📍: Llandudno Beach

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Find Your Freedom in Cape Town this summer!

Immerse yourself in the authentic culture, savour the taste of our local cuisine and share community stories with our locals. Find your community in the Mother City. Are you ready?

#findyourfreedom #capetownsummer #lovecapetown #thingstodoincapetown #capetown #placestogo #travel #kaapstad #lecap #kapstadt #ciudaddelcabo #kapstaden #africa #southafrica #südafrika #community #culture #local
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Giveaway Alert! 🚨

Stand a chance to win 2 tickets to @levante_urban’s “Colour My Kicks” event taking place at Cafe Euphoria in Woodstock this Saturday from 11am to 2pm.

All you have to do is follow @lovecapetown and @levante_urban and tag the person you’d like to take along with you in the comments below!

Each ticket includes:
- A pair of white Converse sneakers
- 5 paint colours, art equipment and supplies to paint one side of each shoe
- A drink of your choice
- An art assistant

The competition ends on Thursday at midnight and winners will be notified on Friday, 25 November 2022.

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If you’re looking for pocket-friendly travel options, then head to Durbanville!

Located some 30 minutes from Cape Town City Centre, Durbanville boasts award-winning wineries, adventure activities and a range of striking outdoor spots.  
 
Here are some pocket-friendly/free activities to try when you visit this town... 🍷🚲

#lovecapetown #durbanville #thingstodoincapetown #capetown #placestogo #travel #kaapstad #lecap #kapstadt #ciudaddelcabo #kapstaden #africa #southafrica #südafrika
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Find Your Freedom in Cape Town this summer!

Soak up the luxury sea views on a yacht, ​experience a peaceful paradise at a luxury hotel and savour some of the finest wines at award-winning ​wine estates.

Find your luxury in the Mother City. Are you ready?

#findyourfreedom #capetownsummer #lovecapetown #thingstodoincapetown #capetown #placestogo #travel #kaapstad #lecap #kapstadt #ciudaddelcabo #kapstaden #africa #southafrica #südafrika #luxury #luxurytravel #luxurylifestyle
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Summer in Cape Town loading ☀️🌊🍹
📹: @travelfuxi

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Competition Alert!!! 🚨 Stand a chance to win one of 2 x double tickets for this year's We Love Summer Cape Town festival! ☀️

To win, all you have to do is tag the person you want to take along with you in the comments below…

The competition ends on Thursday, 17 November 2022.

Winners will be announced on 18 November 2022.

The festival takes place at Blue Rock Waterski Resort on 26 November 2022 from 11am to 11pm.

#lovecapetown #welovesummerfestival #capetown #festival #competition #summer
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Sea Point Goes Global! 🌍🌊

This cosmopolitan seaside suburb was recently voted one of the coolest neighbourhoods in the world by Time Out Magazine.

With mouthwatering dining experiences, adventure activities, shopping and some of the most Instagrammable spots in the Mother City, Sea Point is a must-see attraction this summer.

📷: @just_drone_it_sa

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From the creatively crafted carts and crazy costumes to the crashes and dashes to beat the clock, the @redbullza Box Cart Race wheely had us at the edge of our seats!

#lovecapetown #bokaap #bokaapcapetown #capetown #redbull #redbullboxcartrace #racing
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Waddling into the weekend… 🐧

#lovecapetown #capetown #placestogo #travel #kaapstad #lecap #kapstadt #ciudaddelcabo #kapstaden #africa #southafrica #südafrika #travelling #penguin
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Durbanville is home to picturesque wine farms and unique experiences worth discovering.

Head over this weekend to @durbanvillewine for the much anticipated Wine on the Square Wine & Food Festival. The event takes place from 5-6 November 2022.

📷: @airtographyza

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From Table Mountain to Bo-Kaap, Cape Town has something for every type of traveller.

Use our 2022/23 Visitors’ Guide to plan your epic Mother City adventure.

Download yours online or get your copy at our Visitor Experience Centres at Cape Town City Hall, Cape Town International Airport or Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden!

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