Having initially been chosen as one of 440 candidates in 2009, Table Mountain attracted millions of votes from around the world before voting closed on Friday.
The New7Wonders of Nature are the Amazon, Halong Bay, Iguazu Falls, Jeju Island, Komodo, the Puerto Princesa Underground River and Table Mountain.
In Cape Town, a crowd gathered at the V&A Waterfront amphitheatre for the official announcement on Friday night. There were huge celebrations when Sabine Lehmann, CEO of the Table Mountain Cableway, read out the results in alphabetical order.
Table Mountain’s campaign was promoted by various celebrities, including Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu, Hollywood actor Blair Underwood and the Springbok rugby team.
Table Mountain, which at about 360-million years old is 1 of the world’s oldest mountains, is an iconic landmark for many reasons. Of all the final 28 contenders for the New7Wonders of Nature, it was the most accessible, just 20 minutes’ drive from Cape Town International Airport.
The Table Mountain Cableway, established in 1929, has taken more than 21-million visitors to the top of the mountain, where there are fantastic views of the Cape Town coastline, city centre and suburbs. Hikers can take the Platteklip Gorge route up Table Mountain, and be at the top within an hour.
Table Mountain is home to a wide range or fauna and flora, boasting more species of plants than the entire United Kingdom. Table Mountain forms part of the Cape Floral Region, which is a Unesco World Heritage Site.
Said Lehmann: ‘I would like to thank everyone who took the time to vote for Table Mountain and the celebrity ambassadors – from Archbishop Desmond Tutu and the Springbok Rugby team to all the journalists, musicians, comedians, actors, politicians and sports stars who campaigned on our behalf.’
Table Mountain’s New7Wonders of Nature status follows Cape Town’s recent confirmation as the 2104 World Design Capital.
Said Cape Town Tourism CEO Mariëtte Du Toit-Helmbold after the announcement: ‘We are very, very excited about this win! From being awarded the World Design Capital 2014 designation just a few weeks ago to Table Mountain being named one of the New7Wonders of Nature today, Cape Town and South Africa are standing proud!’