About Intaka Island

Only 12 km from, the centre of Cape Town, Intaka Island is a green lung in the midst of built up Century City. Intaka Island is a series of natural wetlands and manmade islands that emerged as a result of an Environmental Impact Report suggesting the preservation of a portion of the area when building, then heavily inundated with alien vegetation wetlands and fynbos.

Did you know? Intaka, which used to be known as Blouvlei, has been here since 2001 and is a series of three islands. Whilst the western half is the wetlands, the eastern half is a series of seasonal pans and rare types of fynbos, in need of conservation. Originally the area that is now Century City was covered largely by alien vegetation and a few degraded wetlands used by waterbirds.

The sixteen hectare nature reserve lies within 250 hectares worth of concrete, yet boasts 125 species of bird and 170 different species of plant. You can get there either by walking across a bridge across the canal, or you can catch the Century City Ferry along the canals from the shopping centre. If you have your own boat you can buy a permit that allows you to row along the water for a year Ė no motorised boats allowed, obviously.

Intaka means 'bird' in Xhosa and is an example of how nature conservation can co-exist with extensive development, providing a sanctuary amidst the hustle and bustle of shopping, business and residential properties.

The Visitors' Centre, funded by corporate and private donations, is a tribute to environmentally friendly living and includes solar panels, photovoltaics, wind turbines, grey water systems, rain water harvesting, compost and worm farms, and recycling.

If you want an idea of what it is to live without impact on the environment, this is where to see it. There are a number of bird hides on the island, there is a wheelchair friendly path, grysbok have been re-introduced to the area, and flamingos are said to come here during winter.

The ferry operates between 10am and 4pm and the nature reserve is open every day from 7.30am until 5pm.

Need to Know

WhereIntaka Island, Corner of Summer Green road and Century Boulevard, Century City, Blaauwberg, Cape Town, South Africa

WhenOpen every day from 07h30 to 17h00

Telephone+27 (0)21 552-6889

OvernightStay in Century City Accommodation, Cape Town

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