Cape Town stop of the month: Castle of Good Hope

15 April 2016

The star-shaped fort is stop 18 on our Downtown Tour and is our stop of the month to commemorate its rich history, which spans more than three centuries.

The year 2016 marks 350 years since the first stone of the Castle of Good Hope was laid – making it the oldest colonial building in South Africa. And while efforts to have the building declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site continue, it is currently undergoing refurbishment and restoration.

Open seven days a week, hop off here to experience the early days of the Cape – from the architectural design and decor to a horse-and-carriage ride. Enjoy a guided tour of the castle and get locked in a dark, dingy dungeon to get a feel of what it must have been like for prisoners during the 17th century.

Watch the daily key ceremony, followed by the firing of the Signal Cannon, and even see a blacksmith in action. Look through the William Fehr Collection in the Castle of Good Hope museum. It includes furniture, oil paintings and antique china – reflecting the lifestyle of the early settlers in the Cape.

(Image: City Sightseeing)

Did you know?

  • The first stone was laid on 2 January 1666
  • It took 13 years for the Dutch East India Company to complete the Castle of Good Hope
  • It was built by slaves, volunteers, soldiers and the Khoikhoi
  • The building once housed a church, bakery, living quarters, shops and prison cells – among other facilities
  • The entrance to the fort indicates the original position of the shoreline

Entry to the Castle costs R30 for adults and R15 for children between five and 15 years old. South African pensioners also pay R15.