Slap bang in the middle of the city is a green oasis and what some locals only think of as a cool spot for a picnic. Well, if you stroll down the garden path you’ll find a lot more than sprawling lawns, lush plantings and luxuriant blooms.
A walk back in time Named for the Dutch East India Company, the Company’s Gardens lie alongside the elegant Houses of Parliament and Tuynhuys, the President’s Cape Town residence. Established in the 1650’s by Jan van Rieebeck, the Company’s Gardens was provided fresh produce for the ships and Cape Town’s colonists.
In 1848 the Garden became a botanical garden and public park, enticing visitors for a wander around the fountains, rambling lawns, koi fish ponds, Japanese rose garden, aviary, sun dial and some of the country’s oldest cultivated trees.
Nut-gobblers? Be prepared to encounter busy squirrels scampering about, stopping only to grasp titbits proffered to them. Most visitors enjoy feeding the Garden's permanent residents, grabbing bags of peanuts from vendors at the Adderley Street entrance.
Culture vultures and arty farties head to the Iziko South African National Gallery to check out the empressive collections of South African, African, British, Dutch, French and Flemish art. The Gardens is also home to the Iziko South African Museum with its phenomenal collection of one and a half million specimens. A mosey around the Museum’s halls leaves one with a greater understanding of the earth’s biological and cultural diversity.
Beam me up? Next door is the Iziko Planetarium where you can kick back for the ultimate in comfy armchair travel – a cosmic voyage through outer space projected onto an enormous dome.
Anyone for tea? Join tourists or lunchtime locals for a feast of scones, jam and cream or homemade apple pie under the boughs of stately old trees at the Company's Garden Tearoom.
The Company's Gardens Map
* We rely on Google's mapping service, and the location information supplied to
us to show street view images. Please use street view as a guide only as we cannot
guarantee its accuracy.
*Distances are shown as the crow flies and not necessarily the actual travelling