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Keep Warm and In-Awe at Iziko Museums

#See #Discover #Explore the wonders of our world, our histories and our heritage; visit Iziko Museums of South Africa this winter!

For media images and interview requests, please contact: Zikhona Jafta at

This winter, step indoors and see, discover and explore the wonders of our world, our histories and our heritage at Iziko Museums of South Africa. The Museum is open between 09h00 and 17h00; please note that Iziko is affected by load-shedding, and must close when the lights go out. We ask that you please check the Cape Town CBD (Area 7) load-shedding schedule before committing to a trip to the Museum!

Did you know that the Iziko South African Museum (ISAM) is home to a remarkable one-and-a-half million specimens of scientific importance – where for every object on exhibition, there are thousands more carefully stored away? The collections range from fossils, which are almost 700-million years old to insects and fish caught last week. There are also stone tools made by people 120 000 years ago, traditional clothes from the last century, and t-shirts printed yesterday! This winter, visit the ISAM and uncover the many wonders behind these collections.

Learners participate in the Iziko School Holiday Programme in March 2022. Photograph: Nigel Pamplin © Iziko Museums of South Africa.

“Must see” exhibitions at the ISAM include Sentinels of the South – an exhibition examining the history, discoveries and current role of South Africa’s Antarctic and Southern Ocean exploration. Antarctic ecosystems, including South Africa’s Prince Edward Islands, are exceptionally important in understanding our planet and its future; the isolation and extreme weather conditions prevailing there means that they still contain some of the most untouched ecosystems on earth, making them exceptional natural ‘laboratories’.

Installation shot of Sentinels of the South at the Iziko South African Museum, 2020. Photograph: Nigel Pamplin © Iziko Museums of South Africa.

Also on show at the ISAM is JellyWorld – an ocean fully of jellyfish in a world changed by people. Jellyfish blooms are becoming increasingly prevalent in the oceans of the world. Masses of jellyfish swarms are commonly observed in our own Benguela Large Marine Ecosystem; threatening our food security. Overfishing and pollution are primary drivers of jellyfish blooms and humans therefore indirectly threaten our own existence. JellyWorld raises appreciation and awareness of the role that jellyfish play in marine ecosystems and highlight why they are important to society.

Mining and Earth artist Jeannette Unite’s new exhibition, PLOT: Critical Zones, interrogates humans’ relationship with minerals at the heart of mining, industrialisation, manufacture, and consumption through an installation of “bar-code” paintings – currently on show at the ISAM. Unite has mined for her paint box – using oxides, metal salts and residues from extraction, heritage and industrial sites – and has developed paint, pastel and glass recipes guided by advice from Earth scientists, geo-chemists, paint-chemists and a ceramicist to develop this ‘eco-alchemic’ work.  These mining artworks are made from the very mined material they interrogate; the material is thus both subject and object in her predominantly large-scale art pieces.

A visitor reads about an artwork in Jeannette Unite’s PLOT: Critical Zones, currently on exhibition at the Iziko South African Museum, 2022. Photograph: Nigel Pamplin © Iziko Museums of South Africa.

This winter, we also encourage a visit to our other flagship sites! The Iziko Slave Lodge is one of the oldest buildings in Cape Town, and has answered to many names over the last three centuries: the Slave Lodge, Government Offices Building, Old Supreme Court, and the South African Cultural History Museum. Each of these names reflect the long and rich history of this site – and this winter, learn the stories of those once enslaved in the building. The Iziko Bo-Kaap Museum is one of the earliest homes built in the Bo-Kaap area, dating back to the mid-18th century. The museum, situated in the historic area that became home to many Muslims and freed slaves after the abolition of slavery, showcases local Islamic culture and heritage. Learn more about this heritage with a winter visit to the museum!

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Exhibitions & Events

Inside Iziko

Iziko Museums


Dear Visitor

Please be advised that the Castle of Good Hope will be closed to the public on Thursday, 8 February 2024.

We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause. Looking forward to your future visits.


Iziko Management