It’s striking just how un-African Cape Town looks and sounds. Halfway between East and West, Cape Town drew its population from Africa, Asia and Europe, and traces of all three continents are found in the genes, language, culture, religion and cuisine of South Africa’s coloured population. Afrikaans (a close relative of Dutch) is the mother tongue of over half the city’s population. Having said that, a very substantial number of Capetonians are born English-speakers and English punches well above its weight as the local lingua franca, which, in this multilingual society, virtually everyone can speak and understand.

Afrikaans is the mother tongue of a large proportion of the city’s coloured residents, as well as many whites. The term “coloured” is contentious, but in South Africa it doesn’t have the same tainted connotations as in Britain and the US; it refers to South Africans of mixed race. Most brown-skinned people in Cape Town (over fifty percent of Capetonians) are coloureds, with Asian, African and Khoikhoi ancestry.

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7 amazing African journeys

7 amazing African journeys

Africa is a continent of wild open savannahs, terracotta sunsets, thousands of vibrant green hills and rugged coastlines. Here, you can be chugging along on …

06 Jul 2016 • Harriet Constable insert_drive_file Article
Cape Town's irrepressible township revolution

Cape Town's irrepressible township revolution

Many visitors to Cape Town leave with a fairly limited view of the Mother City. They see the whitewashed beachfront restaurants and hotels, take the cable car u…

24 Dec 2015 • Chris Clark insert_drive_file Article
7 places to sample Cape Town’s hedonistic nightlife

7 places to sample Cape Town’s hedonistic nightlife

Whatever your scene, from sweaty electronic music dancefloors to open-air beer gardens, Cape Town has it all. Being a hedonistic city – especially in the sum…

30 Jan 2015 • Site Editor insert_drive_file Article
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