The province lies at the western end of the Southern Mountains, and includes the four highest mountains of Nava. There is a large amount of mountain tourism because of this, and there are numerous glaciers and ski fields also. In the northern part of the province there is also animal agriculture and horticulture.
There are several ethnic minorities in the province: it has the second-highest proportion of inhabitants of German descent (after Midland of South West) and there are also notable populations of Polish, Czech, Croat and Slovak descent.
Southwest Cape Province has existed since 1898; before that, its territory formed the western third of the no longer extant Far South Province.