Greenmarket Square, Cape Town

Greenmarket Square, Cape Town (must see)

No trip to Cape Town is complete without a visit to Greenmarket Square, one of the key tourist attractions in the city. Built in the 18th century in the heart of Cape Town's business district, the square was initially used as a slave market, then a cattle market, until ultimately became a principal gathering place for merchants. Today it houses a flea market, one of the best in South Africa, where you can find anything – from European clothes to tribal costumes to precious jewellery and more.

There are also a number of restaurants and cafés surrounding the place, serving delicious local food and drink. For extra fun, there are numerous buskers, mime-artists, jugglers and magicians to keep you entertained. Other nearby attractions include The Old Town House, home to the Michaelis Collection of 17th century Dutch and Flemish paintings; a Victorian Gothic church; and the Inn on the Square, last of the 19th century local townhouses still in place.

Why You Should Visit:
Not for people looking for peace and quiet – it's a fun place to sit outside under the sun with a drink/snack and watch the activity. It's also a good place to find your souvenirs.

Tip:
As with most markets, prices vary wildly so always bargain the price. Take cash and be prepared to haggle to get a good deal.
Don't forget to visit the small, pedestrian-only streets around the Greenmarket, but be cautious/aware of your surroundings after dark.

Opening Hours:
Daily: 9am-5pm

Want to visit this sight? Check out these Self-Guided Walking Tours in Cape Town. Alternatively, you can download the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from iTunes App Store or Google Play. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

Download The GPSmyCity App

Download 'GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities' app for IOS   Download 'GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities' app for Android

Greenmarket Square on Map

Sight Name: Greenmarket Square
Sight Location: Cape Town, South Africa (See walking tours in Cape Town)
Sight Type: Attraction/Landmark
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in Cape Town, South Africa

Create Your Own Walk in Cape Town

Create Your Own Walk in Cape Town

Creating your own self-guided walk in Cape Town is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Cape Town Shopping Tour

Cape Town Shopping Tour

Cape Town is grand with quality shopping opportunities. Greenmarket Square, once the heart of Cape Town's business district – started off as a a slave market, then turned a cattle market – is just one of them. Today it houses South Africa's best flea market where one can find a broad selection of merchandise, from tribal costumes to precious jewelry and more.

Pan African Market is...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 0.4 Km or 0.2 Miles
Historical Houses Walking Tour

Historical Houses Walking Tour

When Jan van Riebeeck arrived in Cape Town in 1652, his mission was to establish here a supply station for the ships of the Dutch East India Company sailing to East Africa, India, and the Far East. The oldest buildings in today's Cape Town, dating from the second half of the 17th century, are the remnants of that era.

Garden House, originally a shabby tool shed owned by the Dutch East...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.8 Km or 1.7 Miles
Cape Town Introduction Walking Tour

Cape Town Introduction Walking Tour

Portuguese explorer Bartolomeu Dias first mentioned the Cape of Storms in 1488, but it was soon renamed the Cape of Good Hope with an optimistic eye towards the trade routes it offered between Europe and the East.

In 1652, the Dutch East India Company settled a way-station here for ships traveling that route. Cape Town's natural harbor and strategic position made it the perfect location....  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.3 Km or 1.4 Miles
Bo-Kaap Quarter Walking Tour

Bo-Kaap Quarter Walking Tour

Bo-Kaap is Afrikaans for "above the Cape." The Bo-Kaap District is above Cape Town's city center, on the slopes of Signal Hill. It is the historical center of Cape Malay culture. In the 1760s, Jan de Waal bought land here and built houses he rented to his slaves.

Slaves came from Malaysia, Indonesia, and other parts of Africa. Many of these slaves were Muslim, and this area...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.0 Km or 0.6 Miles

Useful Travel Guides for Planning Your Trip


16 Distinctively South African Things to Buy in Cape Town

16 Distinctively South African Things to Buy in Cape Town

The many hopes pinned on this place (Cape of Good Hope) by passing-by sailors over the centuries must have done a good job for Cape Town, seeing it become a colorful cultural hub and prominent metropolis (3rd largest) in South Africa. Overlooking the meeting point of the two oceans (Indian and...