Cape Town audio tour: The Original Shoreline

About the Tour

Over the centuries, natural and historical events and extensive development have obscured Cape Town's original shoreline. This has influenced the city’s history and reconfigured the shape of the land that meets the water. And yet, it is a line rich with history, and contains layers of stories that have long been suppressed, overlooked, or left to lie in dusty drawers and family folklore.

The tour retraces the original shoreline, from the first making of the land to the present day – and beyond it, into the lessons changes to sea level hold for our future.

Tour Producer


Cape Town Heritage Trust

The Cape Town Heritage Trust is an independent, private-sector, non-profit organisation concerned with the conservation and enhancement of the man-made and natural environment and hence with the socio-economic advancement of the city and its people.

The Trust was established in 1987 by the Cape Town City Council with the backing of the Cape Provincial Administration. A number of buildings in Shortmarket and Hout Streets, originally acquired for road-widening purposes, were donated to the Trust. These properties were sold subject to conditions as to their restoration and conservation. The Trust is actively engaged in a partnership scheme with the Council and individual property owners for the upgrading of these streets and has already ensured the improvement of certain sections.

How VoiceMap Works

Focus on your surroundings, not the screen

VoiceMap’s audio tour app uses GPS to play audio automatically, at the right time and place. Just install it, then download your tour and go to the starting point to begin your walk, drive, cycle, train trip or even boat ride.

Follow a route with turn-by-turn-directions

Tours follow a route from a fixed starting point. This is how we provide turn-by-turn directions. It also helps publishers tell a story greater than the sum of its parts. But you can use Resume to pick up a tour from the closest location whenever you like.

Listen as many times as you like

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Take virtual tours anywhere

Just select Virtual mode in the VoiceMap app to listen to tours at home – or anywhere else. You’ll see the option after you download the tour. You can also listen to the whole tour at

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Use VoiceMap offline

The VoiceMap app works entirely offline if there’s no data connection, so you don’t have to pay roaming fees. Just download the tour over WiFi before you get started.

Major Landmarks

  • Castle of Good Hope

  • Cape Town City Hall

  • Sky Bridge

  • Foreshore Freeway Bridge

  • Battery Park

  • Zeitz MOCAA

  • Chavonnes Battery

  • V&A Waterfront

Directions to Starting Point

This tour starts at the entrance to the Castle of Good Hope, close to the City Sightseeing drop off on Castle Street. If you're in front of the moat, looking at stone lions on top of two yellow pillars, you're in the right place.

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Places to stop along the way

Castle of Good Hope, Milk & Honey Bar, Shift Espresso bar Waterway House, Battery Park, Zeitz MOCAA, Chavonne's Battery, South African Maritime Museum, V&A Waterfront

Best time of day

In summer, it's best to start the walk in the early morning or mid-afternoon when it is less hot. In winter, enjoy the walk at any time of day before sunset.


Wear comfortable shoes and be aware of your belongings in case of pickpocketing.

In summer, bring along some water and a hat as it can get very hot. In winter, bring a jacket or raincoat as it can get quite cold and wet.


Preview mode limited to first 3 locations.