The current legal battle between the Muslim residents of the Bo-Kaap and the developers of an 18-storey apartment block is just one of many that have been fought in this historic low-rise Cape Town neighbourhood. South Africa’s largest concentration of early 1800s architecture sits on prime land on the slopes of Signal Hill, just minutes from the city centre.
“Bo-Kaap” means “above the Cape” and due to its elevated position, some of the best views of the city can be enjoyed from the area. These distinctive flat-roofed, single-storey homes were mainly built for and by liberated slaves and political exiles from the former Dutch colonies of the East. Their descendants…
Call it gentrification – which for some means the removal of the urban poor in favour of the well-heeled crowds – but the revival of South Africa’s inner cities has been a boon for the arts. Once-seedy buildings are now home to trendy cafes, art galleries, pop-up theatres, open-air film screenings and hip stores. These new establishments often create employment and support local economies by attracting patrons with disposable incomes.
Here’s our list of must-see urban spots to visit.
One Eloff Street, Jo’burg
Painted a striking yellow and turquoise, this building in…