Grassy Park, Cape Flats

Grassy Park is one of the southern suburbs of Cape Town set on the Cape flats, just east of the M5 and the Princess Vlei, and closest to the suburbs of Ottery and Lotus River. Historically the suburb has been around a long time, emerging initially on part of the farm Montagu's Gift, north of Zeekoevlei, in the early 1900s. In those days this was all rural farm land but by 1920 there were already 2000 people living here.

During the 1960s the suburb emerged as Grassy Park, a coloured township originally known as Koek se bos (Cook's bush). Coloured people, under Apartheid, were forcibly removed from 'white areas' of Cape Town and given homes in 'coloured' communities like Grassy Park.

Today it's a thriving, colourful community, where Christian and Muslim live alongside one another, and 'busy corner', on Victoria Road, functions as the heart of the suburb, lined with little shops, a minibus taxi station, a high school and the Grassy Park library.

Not only will you find a large branch of the SPCA here, tucked just behind the graveyard on the corner of 1st Avenue and First Road, where you can adopt an animal or take the odd tortoise who happens into your garden, but Grassy Park is also home to the Stables Craft and Culture Centre, an income-generating project worth a visit on Prince George Drive.

Also in Grassy Park is the bird sanctuary, Rondevlei Nature Reserve. Over 230 bird species as well as a series of mammals and reptiles make this 2km² their home. Six bird hides lead off a pathway that takes one along the water's edge. A great spot to which to head first thing in the morning, if you want to perhaps sight a hippo or two.

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