Right in the City center of Cape Town sits one of the liveliest hubs in the City bowl. Filled with Art, Culture and traditional African cuisine, Greenmarket Square is a vital part of the heartbeat of Cape Town.
The History of Green Market Square
Greenmarket Square is the second oldest public space in Cape Town, only triumphed by the Grande parade. It was established in 1696 by Dutch occupants. At the start of its lifetime, the square was used as a market where fruit and vegetables from the nearby Company gardens was sold. It also served as a market for slave owners to buy and sell slaves.
In 1716 an impressive building with pillars and a beautiful balcony was built. This building was known as the Burger Watch House, which was occupied by men who would watch over the city. It was the house of the Dutch Colonies Citizen patrol. Today, the beautiful Dutch building is known as the Old Town House, which houses the spectacular art collection of Sir Max Michaelis.
The Square Today
The square today houses a bustling outdoor market. Traders from all over Africa sell curios, from leather good to beautiful paintings of African Scenes. The square is filled with wonders of the African culture and truly resembles the busy heartbeat of Cape Town.
The sounds of the Square
During the day the square is usually filled with street musicians and buskers, who live out their heritage. This gives the Square unique Cape Town feel that can’t be replicated. The Square does host various free concerts during the year, including an event during the annual Cape Town International Jazz festival. Vendors can be heard speaking the vernaculars of Cape Town, while the sound of traditional instruments fill the square.
What makes Greenmarket Square so popular is the authenticity it brings to the City Bowl. It’s usually flooded with locals and tourists alike. From the visuals of the beautiful Colonial buildings that surround the square, to the sights and sounds of the African Spirit, the Square brings the culture and heritage of Cape Town together.
Join us on our City Cycle Tour and discover the heart and soul of Cape Town at Greenmarket Square Cape Town! Other stops on this tour include the Bo-Kaap, Castle of Good Hope, Company Gardens, and many more.