Cape Town once again Africa’s leading tourist destination

Seated in the centre are James Vos, mayoral committee member for economic growth and Cape Town Tourism CEO, Enver Duminy with members of the Isibane se Africa choir from Khayelitsha. The choir won a trip up to Table Mountain.

The World Travel Awards have crowned Cape Town Africa’s Leading City Destination, for the second consecutive year.

Leading travel industry decision-makers and stakeholders from across Africa attended the Africa & Indian Ocean Gala Ceremony in Nairobi, Kenya, on Saturday October 15.

The World Travel Awards are the gold standard for the industry and bring with them global attention.

The accolade also follows a string of similar recognition such as that of Condé Nast Traveller readers ranking Cape Town as the 9th best city in the world; the UK’s Telegraph newspaper naming it the 3rd best global city, and the Halal Travel Awards (2022) awarding Cape Town with the Most Promising Muslim-friendly City Destination of the Year.

Adding to this accolade, Cape Town Tourism’s (CTT’s) first-of-its-kind, immersive game-style platform, Find Your Freedom, scooped up four awards at the 10th annual Supersonic New Generation Awards held at the end of last month.

These included Bronze Awards for Most Viral Campaign, Most Innovative Gamification Campaign, Best Use of Technical Innovation and Best Revenue Generating Marketing campaign or event.

The digital travel experience, found on the Cape Town Tourism website, uses game-style graphics to help travellers from all over to choose their adventure in Cape Town based on the guide they identify with – the Fearless Foodie, Nature Warrior, or Urban Adventurer.

Enver Duminy, CEO of Cape Town Tourism, says that since international travel to Cape Town opened up after the pandemic lockdowns, the campaigns and hard work behind the scenes has really paid off.

“With our now award-winning Find Your Freedom campaign and other ongoing initiatives, we have been hard at work to restore confidence in Cape Town, which suffered greatly from the global travel bans since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The past year has seen encouraging growth in both international and local travel and hospitality in Cape Town. Being awarded Africa’s Leading City Destination 2022, means yet again that the Mother City is being recognised as a truly world class destination, and we could not be prouder.”

As the main international gateway into Cape Town, winning the Best Airport in Africa at the prestigious 2022 Skytrax World Airport Awards this year is another award that the city is very proud of.

Mark Maclean, Cape Town International Airport Cluster regional general manager, said they were pleased and humbled by this accolade. “This award is in recognition of the great work being done by the ACSA team in collaboration with all our stakeholders and partners to provide passengers and airport users with a world class experience.

“We trust that it will provide visitors to our shores with a sense of comfort and assurance that they will receive a warm welcome and have a good memorable experience at our airport.”

Table Mountain was also recognised once again at these prestigious World Travel Awards, being voted as Africa’s Leading Tourism Attraction for the fourth year in a row.

Table Mountain Aerial Cableway Company (TMACC) managing director Wahida Parker, said: “The World Travel Awards is the gold standard in the travel world and acknowledges service excellence and responsible operators each year.

“We are beyond excited at the news that we retained our title. This award continues to recognise the iconic beauty that has made Table Mountain one of the best tourist attractions in the world. As a Natural Wonder of the World, the mountain has seen more than 29 million visitors reach the top of its summit by the aerial cableway over the decades.”

Table Mountain has meanwhile been nominated in the next stage of the annual World Travel Awards categories, where the focus shifts from regional to global.

Table Mountain and the Cableway have been nominated in two categories.

The City of Cape Town’s mayco member for economic growth and tourism, James Vos said these awards are both humbling and an affirmation of the “splendour and people of our great metro.”

“These awards are recognition of the tireless efforts of the City and its partners, including our official Destination Marketing Organisation, Cape Town Tourism (CTT), in uniquely and successfully connecting with audiences in source markets across the world through clever campaigns such as Find Your Freedom.”

Mr Vos said thanks to the campaigns and the global recognition of platforms such as the World Travel Awards, a busy season is expected with 184 international flights a week expected between November and December.

This is set to increase to 191 flights a week between January and March next year. This amounts to approximately 1.56 million two-way seats between November 2022 and March 2023, generating a whopping R7.9 billion in tourism spend.