Cape Town on Foot: Castle to Slave Lodge

    Ursula profile
    05 Sep 2016
    Clock 30min      Length1mi
    9 ratings

    Groote Kerk

    Pay wave

    Stop and have a look over at the imposing church on your right.

    This is Groote Kerk which means "Big Church". It is the mother church of the Calvinist Dutch Reformed Church established in 1665 at the Cape. Until 1780, it was the only faith permitted by the Dutch East India Company. That year, the Lutherans at the Cape were granted religious freedom.

    Within the church, eight governors of the Dutch East India Company found their last resting place, though there is no access to the graves. The present building was refurbished in the 1830s by the German architect and builder Herman Schutte.

    Should you stroll past it on another occasion, step inside to see the amazing lion pulpit of 1789, the organ, family pews, funeral hatchments and old tombstones.

    Now, turn around and look at the open square in front of you. Can you see the statue of a stern man facing you? That's Jan Hoffmeyr. I'll meet you in front of him.

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