Cape Town is the second largest city in South Africa and is the capital of the Western Cape Province, as well as being the legislative capital of South Africa (the Houses of Parliament are here). It is located in the southwest corner of the country near the Cape of Good Hope and is the most southern city in Africa. It is a stone’s throw from South Africa’s world-famous Cape Winelands around Stellenbosch, Paarl and Franschhoek. It is a World Cup 2010 host city with games to be played at the new African Renaissance Stadium.
Robben Island, located just off the coast from Cape Town, was the location used during the apartheid days to hold political prisoners, including Nelson Mandela. It is now a tourist site. Some of the guides were themselves political prisoners, and they offer plenty of insight about what went on there.
There are many hiking trails in and around the city, from short walks to multi-day hikes, as well as a number of small nature reserves in and around Cape Town. The city also is a great place to surf. Muizenberg is a good place for beginners. If you’re an experienced surfer, try the reef break at Kalk Bay, Outer Kom near Kommetjie or Misty Cliffs on the coast road near Scarborough.