About Magical Cape Town
Cape Town’s Climate
The Western Cape has a diverse climate, with many distinct macro- and microclimates created by the varied topography and the influence of both the Indian (warm water) and Atlantic (cold water) oceans. Therefore, climatic statistics can vary greatly over short distances. Most of the province is considered to have a Mediterranean climate with cool, wet winters and warm, dry summers. The interior Karoo has a semi-arid climate with cold, frosty winters and hot summers with occasional thunderstorms. The Garden Route and the Overberg on the South Coast have a maritime climate with cool, moist winters and mild, moist summers.
Thunderstorms are generally rare in the province, except in the Karoo interior, with most precipitation being of a frontal or orographic nature. Extremes of heat and cold are common inland, but rare near the coast. Snow is a common winter occurrence on the higher lying ground, however, frost is relatively rare in coastal areas and many of the heavily cultivated valleys.
- Cape Town International Airport averages: January maximum: 26 °C (min: 16 °C), July maximum: 18 °C (min: 7 °C), annual rainfall: 515 mm
- Kirstenbosch, Cape Town annual rainfall: 1395 mm
Click here for detailed current weather for Cape Town.
Cape Town’s Flora and Fauna
Located in a biodiversity hotspot, as well as the unique Cape Floristic Region, the city of Cape Town has one of the highest levels of biodiversity of any equivalent area in the world. It is home to a total of 19 different vegetation types, of which several are completely endemic to the city and occur nowhere else in the world. It is also the only habitat of hundreds of endemic species, and hundreds of others which are severely restricted or threatened. This enormous species diversity is mainly because the city is uniquely located at the convergence point of several different soil types and microclimates. An often quoted fact is that there are more indigenous plant species just on Table Mountain then there are in the whole of the British Isles.
Unfortunately, rapid population growth and urban sprawl have covered much of these ecosystems with development. Consequently, Cape Town now has over 300 threatened plant species and 13 which are now extinct. In fact, the Cape Peninsula, which lies entirely within the city of Cape Town, has the highest concentration of threatened species of any continental area of equivalent size in the world. Tiny remnants of critically endangered or near extinct plants often survive on road sides, pavements and sports fields. The remaining ecosystems are partially protected through a system of over 30 nature reserves – including the massive Table Mountain National Park.