Cape Town Mother city

posted 7th April 2019 by Danica Wilson in Work in progress

Planning a Cape Town holiday?

During your planning you may have seen Cape Town nicknamed the ‘Mother city’.  It is a term of endearment that Cape Town had bestowed on it back in the 1930s and it has remained to this day.

The story goes something like this:

In the 1930s, a Cape Town newspaper claimed that the coastal city was the only city in the country, that could be referred to as a metropolis. Derived from the Greek word ‘metros’, meaning mother and ‘polis’ meaning city, the public enthusiastically took to it and the nickname “Mother City” was born.

Cape Town sports a number of different nicknames too as you may have discovered as you read about Cape Town holidays.

Tavern of the seas came from Cape Town being a refuelling stop on the Spice Route. Many sailors could uniwind with fine wine and women after being at sea for long periods of time.

Cape grab is another term linked to sailors. Hostels and innkeepers would charge very high prices to sailors looking for a place to dine and sleep.

Hui! Gaeb came from the Khoisan people and translates to ‘the place where clouds gather’. This is a reference to Cape Town’s number one attraction, Table Mountain and its renowned ‘tablecloth’ of clouds.