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Welcome to Obs
Observatory (Obs) – Keeping it Real
Situated to the east of the city bowl, Obs is noted as being Cape Town's most bohemian suburb, with a long history of being a multi-cultural, melting pot of creativity - to quote Cape Town Magazine...
“Students, artists, philosophers, actors, backpackers and all kinds engage in caffeine and alcohol-fuelled debates about philosophy, politics, jazz, organic food, books, history and the arts.”
Observatory 'village' is centred around Lower Main Road – a narrow thoroughfare, lined with an eclectic array of privately-owned restaurants, quirky shops, bars and clubs. During apartheid, people of all races were allowed to live here, making Obs today, one of Cape Town's most culturally-diverse suburbs, offering a chance for a very 'real' Cape Town experience. Obs is also home to the South African Astronomical Observatory (SAAO) headquarters and the historic Groote Schuur academic Hospital.
Obs is well connected, making it easy to get into the centre, or out to mountains, beaches and beyond. By train, bus or mini-bus taxi, you can get to the city centre in just a few minutes. Or head south to the peninsula, where the train takes a picturesque route along the coast between Muizenburg and Simon's Town, to the beaches, surf spots and coastal villages, along the route to Cape Point.
Student Life in Obs
The University of Cape Town (UCT), Varsity College and Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT) are located close by and are easily accessed. The historic Groote Schuur academic hospital is in Obs and attracts academics from all over the world. Being popular with students, the area has a range of student accommodation, where visitors can opt to stay in a student house, instead of with a host family. This is a good option for student travellers on a budget, who prefer self-catering accommodation, and provides lots of opportunity for interaction.
Many students from abroad, attending UCT, choose to base themselves in Obs. And we are seeing increasing numbers of students from all over the world choosing to stay in the area, further lending to the cosmopolitan feel.
“Trust me! When you stay in Obs, there is a chance to make new, local and international friends every time you step outside!” ~Ali, 2014