Castle of Good Hope picture
Courtesy of Cape Town Tourism

Key Info

Castle Street

Details

Museums, Sightseeing Type
2 hours to Half Day Time to Spend
3.9scorecard
  • 4.0Value
  • 4.5Facilities
  • 4.5Atmosphere

This star-shaped fortress at the heart of Cape Town is the oldest surviving building in South Africa. Constructed in the late 17th century by the Dutch East India Company, the Castle of Good Hope acted as the center of colonial Cape Town's administration and armed forces. While it's still the region's military stronghold, the Castle of Good Hope also houses a several museums. Guided tours are offered both on foot and by horse-drawn carriage. If you can, try to plan your visit around the Key Ceremony, which is marked by the firing of the Signal Cannon.

One TripAdvisor user says that the Castle of Good Hope is a great activity if you're traveling as a family. "Bring the kids to see the changing of the guards. Not Buckingham Palace […] but it has a charm of its own." 

The Castle of Good Hope is open every day from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. (with last entry at 3:30 p.m.), and the Key Ceremony takes place Monday through Friday at 10 a.m. and noon. Guided tours are offered Monday through Saturday at 11 a.m., noon, and 2 p.m. Admission to the castle costs 28 ZAR (just under $4 USD) for adults and 12 ZAR (about $1.50 USD) for children. To learn more about the attractions and activities found here, visit the Castle of Good Hope's website.

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More Best Things To Do in Cape Town

Table Mountain1 of 13
Constantia Valley2 of 13
Type
Time to Spend
#1 Table Mountain

Easily the city's most recognizable landmark, Table Mountain towers over Cape Town just south of the city center. Having earned its name from its unique, flat-topped shape, the mountain is the most popular attraction found within Table Mountain National Park (which encompasses other top attractions like Boulders Beach and the Cape of Good Hope).

There are numerous ways to experience Table Mountain. Adventurous travelers can hike to the summit along one of the mountains numerous trails, although the region's fickle weather can turn an on-foot excursion into an unpleasant, muddy walk. Recent travelers strongly recommend using the Table Mountain Aerial Cableway instead. These suspended cable cars rotate 360 degrees, offering passengers spectacular views of the city and the ocean. According to one TripAdvisor user, "We had to queue for over an hour to get our tickets so recommend booking on-line. The cable car floor rotates so everyone get a chance to see the views."

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Courtesy of Cape Town Tourism
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