Groote Kerk was first concecrated in 1704 (©Cape Town Tourism)
Until 1834 the square was used for auctioning of slaves from the Slave Lodge, with all transactions taking place under a tree; a concrete plaque marks the old tree’s position. The Groote Kerk was South Africa’s first church of the Dutch Reformed faith in South Africa (consecrated in 1704). A fire destroyed most of the original and the present church, completed in 1841, was designed by Hermann Schutte. Open daily 10am-7pm; free guided tours available.