South Africa is unique from most countries around the world in that it has 3 capital cities: Pretoria, Cape Town, and Bloemfontein. Each city serves as the hub of a distinct branch of government. Pretoria, for example, is where executive responsibilities are carried out. This city has been home to the President of South Africa and the Cabinet since 1910. It is located in the province of Gauteng, in the northern part of the country. Cape Town has been the legislative seat and home to Parliament since 1910. This city is located on the coastline of the Western Cape province. Bloemfontein has served as the hub of the judicial branch since 1910 and is home to the Supreme Court of Appeal. It is centrally located within the country and is also the provincial capital of Free State.

Each of the capital cities of South Africa has a different population size. The largest of these is Cape Town, which has a population of 433,688 in the city proper. Its entire metropolitan area, however, has a population size of 3.74 million, making it the second most populated city in the country. This city is closely followed by Pretoria which has a city population of 741,651. Like Cape Town, the municipal population is significantly larger with a total size of over 2.9 million. The least populated capital city in this country is Bloemfontein. Approximately 256,185 people call this city home and a total of 747,431 live in the entire metropolitan area.

Of the 3 capitals of South Africa, Cape Town is the most popular with tourists. It is situated along the coast and surrounded by a beautiful mountain backdrop. Its beaches are famous with visitors, as well as the Table Mountain National Park. Visitors to this park can hike or take a cable car up to the top of Table Mountain. Cape Town is considered a multicultural city, which adds to its tourist appeal. It is well-known for its Cape Dutch Style architecture and is home to a number of other destinations, including: Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden, Artscape Theatre Center, Two Oceans Aquarium, and Mostert’s Windmill. This city also hosts a number of music festivals throughout the year.

Because the 3 capital cities are located in distinct regions of South Africa, each one experiences a different climate. Pretoria, for example, is located within the humid subtropical zone, which means its weather is characterized by hot, humid summers and cool, dry winters. It receives heavy rainfall during the summer months. Cape Town, in contrast, is located within a Mediterranean zone, which means its weather is characterized by warm, dry summers and cool, wet winters. Bloemfontein is classified as a semi-arid climate, which means its climate is generally dry with hot summer temperatures. This city receives only around 22 inches of precipitation every year.

This page was last modified on May 1st, 2018

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