Castle of Good Hope - History and Facts | History Hit

Castle of Good Hope

Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

The Castle of Good Hope is the oldest surviving colonial building in South Africa.

About Castle of Good Hope

The Castle of Good Hope (Casteel de Goede Hoop) in Cape Town is the oldest surviving colonial building in South Africa and the current seat of the military in the Cape.

History of the Castle of Good Hope

The Castle of Good Hope was built by the Dutch East India Company (VOC) between 1666 and 1679 as a maritime replenishment station, but became a thriving settlement for military personnel and civilians alike. Imposing and expansive, the castle casts a very distinct pentagonal shape across Cape Town. Visitors enter through its large gateway bearing the coat of arms of the United Netherlands, built in 1682 to replace the original sea-facing entrance.

Castle of Good Hope today

Visitors can either explore the Castle of Good Hope independently or join one of the many tours which uncover the Castle’s extensive history including a fascinating (if slightly creepy) visit to a dungeon.

There are also a number of exhibitions, including the Castle Military Museum exploring past battles and wars, the William Ferh Collection of period paintings and furniture and a replica of the original Castle Forge. The Castle of Good Hope features as one of our Top 10 Tourist Attractions in South Africa.

Getting to the Castle of Good Hope

There are numerous ways to reach the Castle of Good Hope. If you are travelling by car from Cape Town International Airport, take the Airport Ring Road and Airport Approach Road to the N2. Follow N2 to Newmarket Street in Foreshore before taking the Strand Street exit from Nelson Mandela Blvd/N2. Continue on Newmarket Street and drive straight to Castle Street.

If you are travelling from Table Mountain Aerial Cableway, head northwest on Tafelberg Road. Turn right at Kloof Nek Road/M62. Keep left to continue on Upper Buitengragt/M62 – continue to follow M62. Turn right onto Strand Street before taking another right onto Castle Street.

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