Cape Town has done it again. CNN has released a ranking of the best cities in the world and the Mother City made the cut by finishing up in ninth place.

We have received love from TripAdvisor and National Geographic in recent times, but now international news house CNN and international travel giant Travel + Leisure have joined our fan club:

Forget everything you thought you knew about Africa.

Cape Town is cutting-edge, artsy and buzzing with energy.

There are few places in the world where you can exercise your shopping skills (Woodstock’s Neighbourgoods Market on Saturday mornings is the place to go for Afrikaans jerky and silk-and-leather sandals), take off on a safari, or enjoy world-famous cuisine all in one weekend.

Atlantic-facing Clifton Beaches are the South Beach of South Africa, known for enormous natural boulders tumbling into the sea, pristine sunbathing conditions and the capoeira dancers that entertain crowds with fire and African drums on Monday nights.

Taking first place was once the imperial capital of Japan – Kyoto. The ancient city is a zen seekers paradise with shrines, temples and gardens. Throw in the marvel of modern architecture with the allure of artisan shops and you have a deserved winner.

The next one was a bit of a shocker for me, that the city of Charleston, South Carolina finished in second place. Not that I’m hating on the historic city famed for its Southern hospitality and old-world charm (I’d love to visit it), but it’s a city not often in the limelight, as opposed to other major U.S. cities like New York, Chicago and Los Angeles.

Well done Cape Town! Keep doing us proud. Read the list here.

Photography Travel + Leisure

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