About South Africa
About South Africa
At the Southern end of Africa is a country that has emerged from its troubled and turbulent past into a healthy democratic state and the economic powerhouse of the African continent. Boasting a first-world infrastructure, it is an easy place to visit with technology, roads, telecommunications, banking and commercial sectors all highly developed. Of the 11 official languages, English is the most widely spoken and with a highly sophisticated tourism sector, visitors are pleasantly surprised at how easy it is to tour this country.
South Africa is blessed with unsurpassed natural beauty, from the tropical beaches of the Indian and Atlantic Oceans that flank its seaboards, to snow-capped mountains, savannah grasslands teaming with natural African wildlife, rich birdlife and red sandunes in the heart of the country. It is home to the worlds smallest and yet most diverse floral kingdom and Table Mountain stands as a resplendent gateway to Africa, included as one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World. Home to the Big 5 of Africa, a safari experience is a must-do. Visitors will not be disappointed in spotting Lion, Leopard, Elephant, Rhino and Buffalo amongst much else, all in their natural environments.
The country is split into two distinctive climatic belts: In the South, the Cape experiences a Mediterranean climate of cool, wet winters and hot, dry summers whilst the interior is hot and humid with afternoon showers in summer and cold yet dry in winter. The best time to visit the country is in the Autumn and the Spring when temperatures are mild; and for game viewing this is ideal too, as the grasses and lush bush undergrowth is not as prevalent as it is in summer, making it difficult to spot the animals.
Home to 50million people most of whom were disenfranchised during apartheid, South Africa held its first full free and fair elections in 1994 which saw Nelson Mandela and the African National Congress come to power.
Today the country has a healthy, albeit emerging democracy
still finding its feet, battling to provide services to the most marginalised communities, for whom life is still a daily struggle. Conversely, the economically active sector of the population enjoys a comfortable if not well off and flamboyant lifestyle.
Unfortunately the contrast between the “haves” and the “have-nots” is vast; and as a result, crime is present. However, statistics show it to be a threat to locals, arising mostly from crime in areas and situations that tourists are not exposed to.
It is a country full of ethnic diversity and home to cultures steeped in tribal traditions, European customs, Indian and Malay flamboyance, making music, song, dance and cuisine a delight to explore in all its many influential forms.
The South African Rand has beneficial exchange rate against all the world’s major currencies and with its low cost of living, making South Africa a very affordable foreign destination. Combine this with its natural beauty, the allure of the bush, the ease of travel, the first world infrastructure and comfortable climate and it is no wonder South Africa is one of the countries that averages the highest return visitation by European long-haul travellers.