SOUTH AFRICA

Capital: Pretoria
The 11 official languages of South Africa are: Afrikaans, English, isiNdebele, isiZulu, isiXhosa, Siswati, Tshivenda, Xitsonga, Sesotho, Setswana and Sepedi
Currency: South African Rand (ZAR)
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Population

Welcome to the rainbow nation of South Africa!
A magical country situated at the southern tip of the great African continent. A place where two oceans meet. A place to lose your heart in, explore the diversity of the array of cultures and fall in love with the African Sun. With more than 11 spoken languages and an exceptionally diverse spread of cultures there’s really something for everyone here. Endless options of game reserves and beautiful landscapes offer and experience unlike anything else. Some might still believe the locals live alongside lions, but if a wildlife adventure is what you seek there’s an abundant amount of wild life encounters available. It’s a one in a million destination that’s sure to capture you heart and amaze you beyond your wildest dreams.

Why is South Africa so unique? It might be because of the fact that it boasts the world’s biggest meteor scar, Vredefort Dome, a UNESCO Heritage Site. It might be because the largest diamond ever was found in here. Possibly the fact that the world’s oldest modern human remains were found in the Klasie’s River Cave in SA, or the fact that it is home to 10% of all species of birds worldwide. Quite possibly all of these combined, South Africa is unique in every sense of the word.

Highlights in South Africa

Table Mountain Cape Town

Table Mountain, Cape Town

Home to more than 900 species of plants and a floral kingdom on its own (the world is divided into 6 floral kingdoms) and one of the world’s oldest mountains it’s sure to take your breath away. You can take a trip up the mountain with the famous cable way and the local stalls are sure to entertain.
Robben Island

Robben Island

The famous island prison where late former president Nelson Mandela was held prisoner during the apartheid struggle. The island boasts its very own penguin colony and is a definite must see attraction in the Western Cape of South Africa.

Kruger National Park

Kruger National Park

Spreading wide over 2 provinces it’s of the world’s largest game parks and a great tourist attraction. It’s a life changing experience where you get to breathe in the fresh air, see an array of animals and soak up the real African traditions. A wide range of accommodation is available and the costs cater for every budget. Truly a scenic destination and a promise of an unforgettable safari.

The Big Hole South Africa

The Big Hole

It’s the world’s largest manmade (by hand that is) excavation site and has an extraordinary showcase museum that details the 1870’s diamond rush. Local vendors and stalls sell the most amazing curios and the landmark is sure to keep you busy for hours on end.
Addo Elephant National Park

Addo Elephant National Park

We all know of the Big 5, but this resort has the BIG 7… elephant, rhino, buffalo, lion, leopard, great white shark and southern right wales. Situated on a 164000ha resort this is the one place where you are more than likely to view elephants in close proximity.

Pilanesberg Game Reserve

On this 55 000ha of land you are able to experience the thrill of viewing the Big 5 and couple it with luxury accommodation catered for by one of the many resorts within the park. Hot air balloon excursions are a great way to literally see all that the area has to offer, and if entertainment is what you seek, Sun City Resort and Casino is just outside of the reserve and will provide hours of fun for the whole family.

The Cradle of Humankind

Set in Krugersdorp the “beginning of existence of modern human beings” opens a whole new world. Some of the world’s oldest modern human fossils originate from this World Heritage Site.

Drakensberg Meander

Drakensberg Meander

The scenic surrounds of the breath taking Drakensberg Meander within the southern coast of South Africa is packed with recreational activities such as horseback rides, hiking, fly-fishing and camping. There’s a wide variety of resorts within the area which caters for tourists wishing to stay in absolute luxury as well as those hoping to get as close to nature as possible and go camping. Just outside of the array of mountain resorts lie many beaches and great surfing spots as well as bush breakaway resorts.

Emperors Palace Resort

The beautiful architecture will take your breath away and leave you feeling like you just emerged from the Roman Age. There are numerous restaurants that cater to every need and kids are kept entertained by the wide range of games and rides available while the adults can take a roll of the dice.

Vredefort Dome

If you are an adventurer at heart this 2 billion year old meteor scar of 300km wide caters for abseiling, white water rafting and rock climbing enthusiasts. With beautiful sandstone cliffs and wide open plains this UNESCO Heritage Site is packed with adventure and nostalgia.

Gold Reef City

Gold Reef City, Johannesburg

Set in the old mining town of Johannesburg, this theme park and casino offers entertainment for young and old alike. The theme park has adventure and thrill rides that are of very high standards and the hotel and casino cater for those wanting a less adrenalin driven experience.

Things to do in South Africa

South Africa

Catch a wave

South Africa have some amazing beaches with some of the world’s best surf waves available.

Ride an Ostrich

Yes, ride them, feed them and experience what life is like on an Ostrich farm.

Take you chance with Lady Luck

Casino’s in South Africa are of highest standard and offer hours of entertainment.

Go to a live sport event

Experience passion for the game up front and personal!
South Africa Safari

Go on safari

If it’s the very least you do, experience the bush at its best. Some resorts offer luxury tented camping and spa experiences to make the most out of your stay.

Visit a theme park

South Africa has some of the greatest theme parks .Pick from adrenalin driven destinations such as Sun City Valley of the Waves, Ushaka Marine World, Gold Reef City and many more.

Shop till you drop

With shopping malls the size of some football stadiums, South Africa is also known for its great malls. Gateway Theatre of Shopping is sure to keep you entertained all day long and Canal Walk has the widest range of shops under one roof. There are many different retail therapy spots to choose from with most cities sporting at least one major mall.

Do a Township Tour

Experience the lifestyles of rural communities in style, there are so many tours available and they allow you to truly breathe in the essence of township life.

Best time to visit South Africa

Tourists travel to South Africa from May to October

If you’re looking to escape cold American and European winters South Africa is the perfectly warm answer, as it is in the southern hemisphere and has summer when the northern hemisphere countries are in colder seasons. Throughout summer “normal days” see a minimum temperature of around 15°C (59°F) and a maximum of about 28°C (82°F), , give or take few degrees as some areas in South Africa such as Tzaneen and Ellisras are well known for making you sweat, a lot. Winter cools down to a comfort level of about 23 during the daytime and with sunset can rapidly drop to just below freezing in certain parts during the mid-winter months.

Did you know?

01
Table Mountain alone has more than 1500 species of flora, more than the entire United Kingdom.
02
South Africa has the most official languages in the world (a Guiness World Record)
03
The Karoo district in South Africa has some of the world’s best dinosaur fossils.
04
The University of South Africa (UNISA) is the world’s largest distance learning institution.

Travel Tips

Local dishes to try
  1. Braai – Braai in South Africa is like nothing else. There’s even national “braai day”. It’s a tradition and consists of meat being grilled over hot coals in an outdoor open fire. Boerewors (sausage) Pork Rashers, Sosatie (Kebabs) and Steaks are the most common meats for the meal and is usually accompanied by a salad (such as banana salad or potato salad) and “braai brood” (bread filled with tomato, onion and cheese and then grilled over the coals)
  2. Pap- Maize meal made into a stiff porridge is a staple food in South Africa as well as many other African countries. It’s cost effective and can be eaten in many different ways and combined into other recipes to make it exotic but the best way to eat this item is with traditional Seshebo (Tomato & Onion mix stew).
  3. Koeksisters – Sweet, crispy and oozing with syrup these little deep fried twisted dough treats are not for those watching their waistlines, but simply cannot be missed out on
  4. Biltong – it’s like beef jerky and simply cannot be excluded from a game of rugby. It’s possibly the most snacked on item in the country.
  5. Bobotie – Minced curried meat is topped with a frothy custard and then baked, traditionally served with yellow rice. The Cape Malay influence is instantly portrayed after just one bite.
  6. Chakalaka – it’s a dipping relish served as a side to main dishes. Ingredients include grated onions, carrots, and peppers that are mixed with vinegar and chili and a safely guarded mix of spices.

Events & Festivals

The Sardine Run During the early winter months, thousands of sardines make their way from the cold Atlantic Ocean in the Cape up to the warmer regions of Kwazulu-Natal waters. Massive numbers of fish travel in shoals up to 4km wide and 15km long (May- June)

Klein Karoo National Arts Festival It’s an artist’s paradise and a great escape from everyday life. The country’s top talent steps onto stage for live drama performances, talented voices sing from all corners, the most beautiful art is on display and thousands of stalls sell the quaintest curios and items sure to catch the eye in any home. It’s a magical display of art in every form and attracts thousands of visitors each year (July)

Namaqualand Daisies. In a semi dessert region in South Africa lays a dull landscape that magically transforms into a burst of colors. This kaleidoscope of color stretches 500km alongside the Cape coast and 100km into the mainland. To see a dull world suddenly transform into a flower festival captures the essence of life itself. (July – October)

Whale WatchingHermanus is a South African town best known for its spectacular views on the Southern Right Wales that migrate to the more secluded parts of the Cape coast through the late winter/early summer months (August – November)

Be prepared!
Use a travel company to prepare or prepare one yourself but use a travel itinerary and make sure you have a clear plan of what you are going to do, how you will be traveling and a list of contact numbers.
Don’t carry too much cash
Rather make use of traveler’s cards or bank cards, most vendors is South Africa have Visa and Master Card supported systems.
Be alert
South Africa unfortunately has a high crime rate and criminals tend to seek out tourists.
Use plenty of sunscreen!
Basic traveling needs: a camera, adaptor plugs, a sunhat and plenty of sunscreen. South Africa is in the dead center of the current gap in the ozone and will be for the next 10 years and yearly South Africans are among the highest victims of skin cancer worldwide due to the harshness of the sun.

Remember!
If you have any headaches, aching joints and fevers after visiting the country be sure to tell you physician straight away as some areas in South Africa are exposed to Malaria.
Consider renting a vehicle!
Consider renting a vehicle when traveling to a destination such as the Kruger National Park where a lot of driving is part of the package. It can give you a sense of freedom and allows you to go where you want to and when you want to.
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