When you think about churches, you automatically think about great beautiful architectures. The reason behind this is the belief, maybe they even want to impress God by their work. If you are going to build a temple of God, it is extremely likely to be one of your greatest creations. Churches these days have not just been symbols of religion or religious dedication, but also home to political power and a way to project royal authority. Whatever the reason be, churches are remarkable results obtained with the perfect combination of dashing engineering and workmanship. Churches in Cape Town are one of the oldest in whole Africa, with one dating back to 1771.

5 Most Famous Churches In Cape Town

Visiting churches might seem quite an old school thought to the youth these days, but it has always been more than that. Here are our top 5 picks of best churches in Cape Town that you would not want to miss despite your religious differences.

1. St. George’s Cathedral, Cape Town

Beautiful Church

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Designed by Sir Herbert Baker, St. George’s Cathedral was started to be built in 1901. The church replaces another cathedral which was built in 1934 – built on exactly the same site. The church is also known as the “People’s Cathedral” and is the oldest one in South Africa. If you ever visit Cape Town, we recommend you to be a part of this active and dedicated congregation by visiting the church – at least once.

In respect to architecture, the church has everything you want to see in a church, from bell towers and bells (10 different ones) to rose windows, to The Crypt – a jazz restaurant. The most astonishing history of this church is that the church is still being built to this day. The churches high ceilings, its gothic style, choirs, and its peaceful environment is loved by all the tourists who visit Cape Town.

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2. Groote Kerk, Cape Town

Beautiful view of Church

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Groote Kerk is believed to be South Africa’s oldest place of formalized worship. This Dutch Reformed church was built by Herman Schutte. Before being the Groote Kerk, this site held another church which was built in 1687, until 1841 being replaced by the present building. Despite the changes, the original steeple of Groote Kerk was retained as the new building was built.

The churches in Cape Town South Africa are all remarkable feats of architecture and the Groote Kerk is no less. Groote Kerk is a spectacular construction of the tower, thatch, gables, a timber arched ceiling and gravestones as paving slabs. The church is enclosed by a large pulpit and was created by Anton Anreith and Jan Jacob Graaff, a sculptor and a carpenter respectively. For those who are looking to visit the Groote Kerk – which also means “Great Church”, it is located on Church Square in Adderley Street.

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3. St. Mary’s Cathedral

St. Mary’s Cathedral

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Previously known as the “Cathedral of Our Lady of the Flight into Egypt”, St. Mary’s Cathedral was founded in 1851 by a German architect Carl Otto Hager. The neighborhood bishop purchased the land in 1839 and the main stone was laid two years after, being sanctified on April 28, 1851, with the Gothic Revival style. The church was remodeled in 1947, right after the bishop added a tower in 1926. The last restoration was done in 1997.

The cathedral now seats in the heart of the Cape Town city in Stalplein close to the parliament building and is also called the heart of the Cape Town city. The Cathedral possesses a focal position in connection to its importance and the ‘Mother Church’ both of the Archdiocese and entire South Africa. The history of St. Mary’s Cathedral in itself serves a visit to one of the most beautiful Catholic Churches in Cape Town. The church is home to some exquisite works of art.

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4. Lutheran Church


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Getting further on with architecture and history, another church on our list of churches in Cape Town is the Lutheran Church. The church is the oldest church in building in South Africa – built in 1771 and the church services are still being held after all these centuries every Sunday like any other church. Declared as a national heritage monument in 1949, the Lutheran Church is situated alongside the Gold of Africa Museum, the Martin Melcke House.

The creation of the carved wood pulpit and the facade of the organ was the masterworks of the great German sculptor Anton Anerith. The church features figures of King David in the two front corners to the pulpit. If you are planning to visit the Lutheran Church, do not forget to see the old collection of the Bibles behind the pulpit. There is also a memorial of Martin Melck at the entrance of the church.

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5. Hillsong Church

People visiting the church

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Hillsong Church is a contemporary church located in 22 different countries in the world, with South Africa alone having 9 churches in Cape Town, Johannesburg and Pretoria. In a list of old churches, Hillsong Church is a new church founded in 1983 (the first one in Australia) by Brian and Bobbie Houston. The church is not famous for any marvelous works of architecture or craftsmanship, but for its masses and initiatives.

Extremely loved by people who visit here, the Hillsong Church is set on a mission of enlightening people by reaching and influencing them by building a Bible-based Christian-centered church. Each mass here is an experience on itself. Hillsong doesn’t limit itself to an old school church but extends its services by creating church music (Hillsong music), Hillsong channel, holding worship and creative conferences and other countless initiatives of sisterhood, city care, justice. etc.

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Except the list mentioned above, there are also plenty of other types of churches in Cape Town. Anyone wishes to visit the Pentecostal churches in Cape Town, then visiting the Hebron Pentecostal Church, Bethany Fellowship Full Gospel Church and the Jubilee community church are few churches one could consider. Consider churches like a safe haven, a place where you go when you have nowhere else to, or you are running from the world. It is not only about religion but also about the craftsmanship, creativity and priceless time spent in these buildings that make visiting South Africa worth the while.

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Frequently Asked Questions About Churches In Cape Town

What are some of the most famous churches in Cape Town?

Even though people from different religions constitute Cape Town, there is a strong Christian influence out there that cannot be denied. Some of the famous churches located there are St. George’s Cathedral, Groote Kerk, St. Mary’s Cathedral, Lutheran Church, and many more.

What are some of the catholic churches in Cape Town?

Several Catholic churches in Cape Town are quite popular all around the world. Some of them are St. Mary’s Cathedral, Sacred heart catholic church, St. Michael Catholic Church, and many more.

What are some of the most beautiful churches in Cape Town?

Most of the churches in Cape Town are extremely beautiful, and some of the more famous ones are St. Mary’s Cathedral, St. George’s Cathedral, Groote Kerk, and many more.

What are the most famous historical churches in Cape Town?

Some churches in Cape Town hold strong significance in Cape Town’s history. Some of the historically significant churches located in Cape Town are Groote Kerk, St. Mary’s Cathedral, St. George Cathedral, and many more.

What is the significance of Hillsong Church?

Hillsong church is one of the few churches in the world that has more than 22 churches in the world as a whole. It has its tv channel as well.

When is the best time to visit Cape Town?

Cape Town has fantastic weather all year round. But the right time to go there is between March to May.

How many days are enough to explore Cape Town?

You can explore the entirety of Cape Town within five days. If you do not have much time, you can even cover the place within three days. It entirely depends upon how many places you are going to cover.

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Category: Cape Town, South Africa

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