In a resounding victory for the Mother City, Cape Town has clinched the second spot in Time Out's prestigious '50 Best Cities in the World to Visit 2024’.
The rankings were determined by a comprehensive survey of a total of 20,000 global travellers, and Time Out's network of travel experts positioned Cape Town just behind the perennial favourite, New York.
This news comes shortly after the city was named as a place with the “best community spirit in Africa”. Analysing social media community groups, the study revealed Cape Town's vibrant community engagement, with 153 groups on Meetup, showcasing the city's social cohesion and inclusivity.
The accolade comes as no surprise, as the city's stunning landscapes and vibrant culture continue to leave an indelible mark on visitors from around the globe.
Cape Town Mayor Geordin Mayor Hill-Lewis expressed his elation over the achievement, stating, "Tourism to Cape Town is now at all-time record levels, which will only be boosted even more by our world-beating ranking in the '50 Best Cities in the World to Visit 2024' global survey. This is good news because record tourism brings new jobs to our City of Cape Town, and that is always our primary goal."
Mayor Hill-Lewis attributed the success to the city's commitment to providing a world-class experience for tourists. He emphasised ongoing investments in infrastructure, plans for water and energy security, and the expansion of policing resources to enhance safety.
Alderman James Vos, Mayoral Committee Member for Economic Growth, shared promising statistics, revealing that Cape Town welcomed a record-breaking 317,000 overseas visitors in December and hosted 2.9 million visitors throughout 2023.
According to Vos, these figures signify unprecedented growth in tourism, translating to new job opportunities within the city's economy.
Vos commented, "It’s exhilarating to see that our beloved city continues to be a top-tier choice for global travellers, and these record tourism numbers will significantly benefit the hospitality sector and attractions, indicating a positive year ahead for the sector and our goal of a tourism-related job in every Cape Town home".
The '50 Best Cities in the World to Visit 2024' rankings are as follows:
1. New York, US
2. Cape Town, SA
3. Berlin, Germany
4. London, UK
5. Madrid, Spain
6. Mexico City, Mexico
7. Liverpool, UK
8. Tokyo, Japan
9. Rome, Italy
10. Porto, Portugal
As Cape Town celebrates these achievements, the focus remains on fostering an ecosystem that supports local businesses and communities and ensures the city's enduring prosperity. The city's commitment to responsible tourism and a thriving local economy position Cape Town as a global destination with both allure and community spirit.