TRAVEL INFO: SOUTH AFRICA
South Africa is one of the most beautiful and varied countries in the world, with a range of landscapes, magnificent natural beauty, a multitude of game reserves and national parks, over 4,000 kilometers of coastline and vibrant cities such as Cape Town and Johannesburg. When looking at the world as one creation, each country displays some form of diversity, and then there is South Africa.
With the crocodiles in the Limpopo River to the penguins waddling on the Cape, South Africa could easily be the definition of diversity. Situated at the southern point of the world's's most majestic continent where the two oceans meet, South Africa is waiting to expose her beauty. There is the forsaken Kalahari, the ever-green Garden Route and the hustle and bustle of wildlife in the Kruger National Park.
For those in search of a different kind of wildlife, they need not look any further then Cape Town's very own Long Street. Explore the epic nightlife of Cape Town in style after enjoying a mouth watering Cape Malay dish. Looking for something to tantalize those taste buds? - Look no further then Durban's Indian area for the best tasting curry. Your trip to South Africa will not be complete until you have had a braai (BBQ), not forgetting a bottle of pinotage produced by the oldest wine industry outside of Europe.
Once you plant your initial footstep on South African soil, you will come across various different terminologies. When you have your first conversation with a South African and they say they'll do something 'just now', it may perhaps mean anything from a couple of minutes, days or even up to a week. Then there is the expression 'now-now", which commonly means a bit more rapidly. We also call our traffic lights; 'Robots'. We are a sociable bunch of people and think nothing of inviting you over for a 'Braai' (BBQ), the day after meeting you.
Most of the country has warm, sunny days and cool nights. Rainfall generally occurs during summer (November - March), although in the southwest, around Cape Town, rainfall occurs in winter (from June - August).
The Cape Floral Kingdom has 9,600 plant species, 70% of which are not found anywhere else in the world. Table Mountain alone has over 1,500 species of plants, more than the entire United Kingdom.South Africa is the second largest exporter of fruit in the world.South Africa has the longest wine route in the world. South Africa is the world's largest producer of macadamia nuts. The world's largest diamond was the Cullinan Diamond, found in South Africa in 1905. It weighed 3,106.75 carats uncut. It was cut into the Great Star of Africa, weighing 530.2 carats, the Lesser Star of Africa, which weighs 317.40 carats, and 104 other diamonds of nearly flawless color and clarity. They now form part of the British crown jewels.
Dr. Christiaan Barnard, at Groote Schuur Hospital in Cape Town, performed the first human heart transplant in the world in 1967. He was also the first to do a "piggyback" transplant in 1971, and he was the first to do a heart-lung transplant. The Karoo region is home to some of the best fossils of early dinosaurs. Although Pretoria is considered to be the capital of South Africa, the country actually has three capitals: Pretoria (executive), Cape Town (legislative), and Bloemfontein (judicial). Mossel Bay is in the Guinness Book of records as having the second most moderate climate in the world.
South Africa has the world's largest individually time cycle race (the Cape Argus), the world's largest open water swimming event (the Midmar Mile), and the world's largest ultra-marathon (the Comrades Marathon)
Rooibos tea has become a worldwide favourite for its fresh taste and excellent health properties. It is only grown in a small region (in the Cederberg) of South Africa and has to be exported in massive quantities from here.
Table Mountain is acknowledged as being one of the oldest mountains on the planet.