‘Don’t rob us, don’t rob our children and don’t rob our grandchildren of the beauty that’s been given to us...’ - Edward Copperfield
About Princess Vlei
The Princess Vlei is the gateway to the wetland system that runs through Grassy Park. The Vlei has a big history, and has long been treasured by the many citizens who have enjoyed its beauty and tranquility. In 2014 the community won a huge victory in stopping the proposed development of a shopping mall. Since then, the Princess Vlei Forum has been working with the City of Cape Town to restore the biodiversity and transform the 100 ha Greater Princess Vlei Conservation Area into a world class heritage site celebrating its rich natural, social and cultural heritage. Watch the video below to learn more about our work, or read more...
Recently Princess Vlei Project Manager Denisha Anand gave a Ted Talk on custodianship and care at Princess Vlei. Watch the recording below:
View the City of Cape Town's Finalised Conceptual Development Framework for the Greater Princess Vlei Area
Join the Forum
The Princess Vlei Forum is working with the City of Cape Town on the ongoing improvement and management of Princess Vlei. All are welcome to join us. Read more...
Princess Vlei Heritage Site Victory
After a campaign going back several years, the Greater Princess Vlei Conservation Area was awarded Provincial Heritage status in September 2020. Read More
May & June : Winter brings new growth to Princess Vlei
Winter is planting month in Cape Town. During May and early June, the Forum hosted three planting events with community members and school learners as part of our efforts to restore the indigenous vegetation at Princess Vlei.
April 29: Guardian eco-camp
'We need to look after the world, and we need to know know what to do for the plants.' - Chandre November, Lotus High.
Chandre was one of 8 young guardians at the Guardian's eco-camp from the 29th April to the 1st May at the Princess Vlei Eco centre. Read more.
April 9: Biodiversity Hack on Retreat dunes
‘My name is Leon Dingwall, from Sassmeer Estate. Thanks very much to the people who rocked up here this morning to clear the area of alien vegetation, the area does look much better for it.’
Leon was speaking at the Hackathon on 9 April. He joined fifty others in clearing the Port Jacksons and litter in the dunes behind the Retreat Civic. Read more.
March 10: Discovering Wetland Wonders
“We are Western Leopard Toads. Princess Vlei is a good place for us to live because there are lots of insects for us to eat.” - Hillwood Primary LearnersOn March 10, 45 learners from four local schools discovered how to look at the world through they eyes of a different species. Read more.
Feb 24: Princess Pollinators
Bees, beetles, moths, butterflies… these were some of the busy pollinators that Harmony Grade 6 learners spotted at Princess Vlei on 24 February.
Dec 12: Can do Canoes
‘This was our first time in a canoe and it was a great experience … it teaches teamwork, if there is no team work you’re not paddling, you’re just going round and round… .’ So said one of our Canoe Club members, describing her experience of canoeing for the first time ... Read more.
Nov 25: Growing Wild
‘Not only did I get an understanding of cuttings, nodes, seedlings and the ecosystem in and around the vlei, but I learned about the history of our indigenous plants and the Flats' - So said Karen Fraser about the Forum's wild plant workshop on 27 November. Read more.
Nov 16 & 23: All things toad
We are Western Leopard Toads. We like to breed at Princess Vlei because it has a lot of water, food and plants. There is food for us, like snails, bees, water beetles and bugs.... These were the observations of one group of young scientists at our ‘Boats and Toads’ event in November this year. Read more.
Oct 16: Celebrating the Dreams Weavers
‘Let’s weave a world where ‘we’ means all humans, all creatures, all plants. Let’s weave these connections, let’s weave a world….So ended a poem performed by Lotus High learners Azrudien Gabier and Tracy Lee Daniels at the Princess Vlei Dream weavers celebration on 16 October. Read more.
Oct 12: healing the soul of the community
‘This is a victory over the selfish needs of capitalism.’
So said Cllr Kevin Southgate at the unveiling of the Provincial Heritage Site Plaque on 12 October. Cllr Southgate commented that he was fighting for Princess Vlei long before he was a councillor. ‘I remember standing on Prince George Drive with a placard reading, ‘No to the mall of death, Yes to the Princess.’ Read more.
Oct 2: Spring walk and the octopus plant
There are many wondrous tales about the mermaid or water monster that lives at Princess Vlei, but few know about the giant octopus on its banks. The ‘octopus’ plant, better known as a waxberry, or Morella cordifolia, is a sprawling member of the Dune Strandveld plant community, and was one of many wonderful plants featured on the Princess Vlei Forum Spring Walk on October 2. Read more.
Sept: Weaving Dreams through art
‘I would like to live in a world where… people would get along; the gangsters could not kill anyone; people can take care of nature and each other.’ These are the wishes of Shaun Amos (Grade 6) Hillwood Primary School in Lavender Hill. The Princess Vlei Forum is currently collecting children’s wishes for the world to be part of an art installation to be displayed at Princess Vlei on 16 October. Read More
Sept 4: Herschel Team hits the aliens and litter
Despite the slight but chilly wind that accompanied 25 parents and learners from Herschel Girls Preparatory School Eco Club during an outing to Princess Vlei on this year’s first Saturday in Spring, activities ensured all participants kept warm Read More
Sept 2: Dream weavers learn about connecting
'Today we have learnt that plants and animals’ connection is like a web, that’s why they call it the web of life, because the connections are like little relationships between the different things.’
So said Skyler Bowman from Primrose Park Primary, speaking at the Princess Vlei Dream Weavers field trip. Read More