Table Mountain is one of only 28 natural sites from around the globe shortlisted to be named one of the Official New7Wonders of Nature.
From an initial list of 440 magnificent natural sites nominated in 2008, Table Mountain was voted onto a list of 77 sites prior to being selected for the final shortlist of 28 finalists in July 2009. Table Mountain Aerial Cableway, Table Mountain National Park and Cape Town Tourism have formed an official supporting committee to champion the mountain’s cause. Table Mountain needs approximately 30 million votes to secure a top 7 spot.
The Official New7Wonders of Nature contest aims to raise awareness of the incredible variety and beauty of nature around us.
The campaign is run by the New7Wonders Foundation in Zurich, Switzerland, an organization which fosters global dialogue through democratic campaigns, and through these campaigns, promotes conservation efforts worldwide for man-made and natural monuments.
The Official New7Wonders of Nature will be determined entirely by votes from the public and the final 7 wonders announced on November 11, 2011. The campaign is well on track to receive more than one billion votes. Voting platforms are made accessible to everyone through the Internet and mobile phones.
Candidates must be clearly defined natural sites that have neither been created nor significantly altered by man. The awareness and tourism income generated through the New7Wonders campaign will ensure that these natural treasures are better preserved for future generations.
So why should we vote for Table Mountain?
Table Mountain is a recognised global icon, visited by millions of people each year. The mountain has attracted the attention of royalty, sports stars and Hollywood celebrities and is one of the most photographed sites in Africa. It withstood years of political turmoil in South Africa and was a symbol of hope for freedom fighters jailed with Nelson Mandela on Robben Island off the coast of Cape Town during the apartheid era.
Table Mountain is one of the oldest mountains on the planet. It’s six times older than the Himalayas and five times older than the Rockies. Mount Everest in the Himalayas is 60 million years old so Table Mountain is estimated to be 360 million years old.
Table Mountain was named a World Heritage Site in 2004. It is part of the Cape Floristic Region, which is the smallest and richest of the six floral kingdoms on earth, boasting an amazing 8200 rare and endangered plant species, some of which occur nowhere else on the planet.
Table Mountain is the only terrestrial feature on our planet to have a constellation named after it. The southern constellation Mensa was first introduced to Western astronomy in 1754 by Frenchman Nicolas Louis de Lacaille (he originally called it Mons Mensae – Latin for “the table mountain”). Lacaille, an astronomer, catalogued an amazing 10 000 stars during his professional career and named Mensa after the increasingly world-famous landmark in the Cape of Good Hope.
If Table Mountain is named one of the seven wonders of nature, South Africa can expect a massive boost in tourism revenue and brand value. Studies have shown that sites participating in the New7Wonders of the man-made world (which were named in 2007) saw an increase of more than US$5 billion (R35 billion) in tourism revenue and brand value.
To vote for Table Mountain, SMS “table” to 34874, visit Vote for Table Mountain or call +44 203 347 0901.