I am sure more locals are guilty of never visiting our local museums that our foreign visitors.. partly because we don’t tend to explore our own cities as much as we do others when we travel and partly we feel the museums will always be there and partly because “we don’t have time! ”
Cape Town has an impressive collection of museums, many of them tucked away in beautiful historic buildings off the main drag. Our local town museums and museums of social interest have a lot to offer Capetonians or our visitors -museums preserve our past, inspire our future and remind us of our heritage.
Here are some of the museums on the Cape Point Route:
South African Naval Museum: Simon’s Town
The South African (SA) Navy Museum in Simon’s Town contains a host of continuously expanding exhibits and naval associated artifacts. It’s filled with vintage navigational and Navy divers equipment, ship and submarine models. There is a real-life size ships bridge, a Westland Wasp Maritime Helicopter, various uniforms, an old diving suit, shop models and the faces of people who have served in the South African Navy. The museum is much bigger than it looks – don’t forget to visit the St George’s Dockyard Church and view the guns and radar masts in the outside Display area. Read More…
The Submarine Tour:
The SAS Assegaai-S99 submarine (a Daphne-Class sub) was restored and is linked to the Naval Museum and open for viewing. Great fun to go inside a real sub and find out about life below the water on a guided tour with retired and in-service naval staff. Read More..
The Simon’s Town Museum: Simon’s Town
This museum depicts the history of the Simon’s Town community, past and present, with an emphasis on the town’s diversity of origins, cultures and religions. Housed in the “The residency” which was built in 1977 – the building itself has a long history having been used as a hospital, post office, school, customs house, police station, gaol and magistrate’s court. The cells are on the lower level and worth visiting – you can even look in the “the Black Hole”. There is an entire room dedicated to Just Nuisance – Simon’s Town’s famous great dane dog and town mascot! There’s a military room, an early history room, people of Simon’s town Room, a shipwreck room and even displays of dignitaries who have visited the town. We love the magnificent yellowwood tree in the courtyard. Read More..
Simon’s Town Heritage Museum: Simon’s Town
The museum was created as a reminder of the rich Muslim culture that existed in Simon’s Town from the time of the Dutch East India Company winter anchorage in 1743 until the forced removals of more than 7000 people under the Group Areas Act and is like a folk museum of Muslim Life. It is packed full of photographs and relics from the homes of people who apartheid classified as Cape Malay’s but whose ancestors seldom originated in Malaysia. Mostly these artefacts come from the more than 7000 who were forcibly removed from Simonstow. Read More…
Warrior Toy Museum: Simon’s Town
The Warrior Toy Museum in Simon’s Town houses a permanent display of 4 000 model cars, 500 dolls and teddy bears, miniature dolls houses and rooms, two fully operating railroads, lead soldier displays, Meccano, ships and many other miscellaneous toys and models. This is a fun family outing, grown men turn into boys, and boys will be boys in this unique haven of toy cars, trains, buses, boats and aeroplanes and lead soldiers. Meanwhile the girls will “ooh and aah” over the dolls, doll houses and teddy bears. This is a trip down memory lane for the older folk and an appreciation exercise for the younger generation. Open daily from 10h00 to 16h00. Entrance: R5
Rhodes Cottage Museum: Muizenberg
This small seaside cottage in Muizenberg is where Cecil John Rhodes spent his last days at the relatively young age of 49. Rhodes was an industrialist, imperialist, mining magnate, politician and philanthropist. You’ll see photos, clippings and caricatures revealing the man behind the legacy. Well worth a visit for those interested in Rhodes and Cape history. Also a fine indigenous mountainside garden. Read More…
Het Posthuys Museum: Muizenberg
Het Posthuys is considered of the earliest buildings along the False Bay Coastline and was built in the late 1600’s as a lookout post for enemy ships entering False Bay. Het Posthuys features early photographs of the Muizenberg area during the early 1900’s and some material on the Battle of Muizenberg and a diorama. . One of the original floor stones still has a series of boat-shaped grooves caused by an ochre-grinding stone, probably used by the San or Khoi inhabitants of the area. Read More…
The Battle of Muizenberg Site: Muizenberg
The Battle of Muizenberg site is on a mountain slope and has breast and stonework remnants belonging to the actual battle in 1795. Views from the site allows you to imagine 4 tall ships sailing close to Muizenberg beach. The Battle of Muizenberg site is open to the public and is where the British captured the Dutch colony in 1795 – a significant marker in the history of Cape Town and South Africa. It is an open air site on a mountain slope between Muizenberg and St James. The site depicts both local and national history, and is best seen by a walking tour lasting about 2 hours in conjunction with Rhodes Cottage Museum and Het Posthuys. Read More..
Fish Hoek Valley Museum: Fish Hoek
This private museum has displays on Peers Cave, local Fish Hoek history and the local environment. Fish Hoek is home to an early Stone Age site where the remains of Fish Hoek man’ were found & the interpretive displays are of historical significance. There is also information on whales and dolphins & the whaling industry. Read More…
Hout Bay Museum: Hout Bay
The Hout Bay Museum gives visitors an insight into the natural and cultural history of Hout Bay from prehistoric times to the growth of the fishing industry. Hout Bay’s people, forestry, mining & fishing industries are all displayed. The museum also offers guided walks and there is a garden with local wild plants – ask about the medicinal and edible properties of these herbs. Read More…
The Hout Bay Trading Store: Hout Bay
Although not a museum, The Hout Bay Trading Store, situated at the Main Road entrance to Mainstream Mall and perfectly housed in one of Hout Bays oldest Fisherman’s cottages, is an absolute treasure trove of historical artefacts, antiques, collectables and vintage finds. During 1896 the original Dorman and Son shop was established here and, like the cottage, the items now on sale are truly a walk down memory lane. Antique maps and certificates, Africana and Victorian collectables, crockery and brass signs, maritime ephemera and artifacts, matchboxes and menus, tins and clay pipes, posters and paintings, Churchill and Royal memorabilia, intricate locks and gramophone records, the list and finds are almost endless. Read More…
Cape Point Route offers day tours, packages, accommodation, activities and car hire in Cape Town’s south peninsula in addition to teambuilding events in Cape Town. We will happily arrange group activities, transport and extended programmes.
Call 021 782 9356 or visit www.capepointroute.co.za