World Cup city profile: Cape Town
A staple in any traveller's South African itinerary, Cape Town is located at the southwestern tip of the country, and is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean on one side and stunning mountains on the other.
The "Mother City" has produced a number of top South African footballers in the past few years, including Benni McCarthy and Quinton Fortune, and will host several high-profile matches during the tournament, including a semifinal.
Population: 1.3 million
Altitude: Zero metres
Sightseeing: Two words: Table Mountain. Anyone who visits Cape Town should not miss travelling via cable car to the 1,000-metre summit of this African landmark. The other can't-miss trip is to nearby Robben Island, where the iconic former president Nelson Mandela spent 18 of his 27 years of imprisonment during apartheid. In the city proper, the waterfront is the place to go for bustling nightlife and great restaurants.
Here's an interesting fact: Low-hovering clouds often form along the top of Table Mountain, and these formations are called "tablecloths" by the locals.
Local soccer clubs: Ajax Cape Town, Santos (Premier) Hanover Park, Ikapa Sporting, FC Cape Town (1st Division).
World Cup climate: Can get rainy in the winter, but temperatures stay consistent, hitting 25 C as the normal high and dropping to 12 C at night.
World Cup stadium: The new Green Point Stadium seats 70,000 people and may have one of the best settings for a soccer stadium in the world, with the ocean on one side and mountains on the other. Built on land once used as a golf course, Green Point's distinctive shape is a result of the noise-reducing cladding that covers the stadium, which will have to work overtime when the tournament kicks off.
2010 World Cup matches: Uruguay vs. France on June 11; Italy vs. Paraguay on June 14; England vs. Algeria on June 18; Portugal vs. North Korea on June 21; Cameroon vs. Netherlands on June 24; one second-round match; one quarter-final match; and one semifinal match.