Postcards from Cape Town
Cape Town, South Africa


This story first appeared in The Captivating Cape Town Issue, available in print and digital.

This story first appeared in The Captivating Cape Town Issue, available in print and digital.

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Salt River District

For all its trappings of prosperity, Cape Town is not without its social issues. The Salt River district, close to the industrial docklands, bears the scars of neglect. Low-rise terraced houses, originally built by Jewish factory landlords for their mostly Malay workers, have over the years fallen into disrepair. But that is now changing, thanks to the help of not-for-profit Baz-Art, who are working alongside residents to breathe new life into the community by inviting internationally renowned street artists to work with young locals to turn the area into a vibrant, culturally sensitive, outdoor living-art gallery. Far from gentrification, this genuinely feels like a way for the residents to regain pride in their streets.


Like many urban villages in cities around the world, the colourful Bokaap neighbourhood of Cape Town is under real threat of complete redevelopment. These few streets of historic Portuguese houses have been home to Cape Malay Muslims for generations, but one by one they are being bought up and turned into bijou pied-à-terres and high-spec Airbnbs. The hordes of Instagrammers and fashion photographers who use its vibrantly painted streets as backdrops have rapidly popularised the area, unaware that they are endangering the rich heritage of the people who have called this area home for generations. Travel is all about discovering and celebrating diversity in its many forms, and it’s sad to see the essence of this beautiful, unique and historically significant place at such risk of urban renewal.

Camps Bay

Photography is the art of capturing light and it doesn’t get much better than in Cape Town in the summer. For an hour or so before sunset, west-facing Camps Bay is bathed in a glorious golden glow that demands to be captured and imbues every shot with a magical quality. This photographer’s dream draws thousands of professional image makers from all over the world to shoot their own postcards from Cape Town – campaigns in an industry worth millions of South African rand. A lot of crews hire one of Camps Bay’s holiday mansions as a base, so many in fact that very few are still used as full-time homes.