All visitors receive a residence permit at the border of South Africa, provided they can show the following Documents: passport, visa if necessary, documents confirming the purpose and duration of the stay, valid return flight ticket and, if applicable, a yellow fever vaccination certificate. A visa is not a guarantee of an entry permit. Special rules apply to people with criminal records.
Passport: is generally required for trips to South Africa, the passport must be valid for at least 3 months after the expiry date of the visa. Passports must have a current photo and must contain at least two blank pages (double page) lying next to each other when entering the country. This is often strictly controlled.
Visa: Generally required, except citizens of the following countries for vacation or business trips (not study trips):
Federal Republic of Germany, Austria and Switzerland for stays of up to 90 days
Study and work visas must be applied for in your home country before you travel to South Africa.
Transit: Transit travelers who fly to the next connection on the same day, have valid documents for the onward journey and do not leave the transit room do not need a transit visa.
Application: In person or by post at the consulates or at the consular section of the embassy.
Residence permit: inquiries to the consular mission before departure.
Documents for travelers who need a visa for South Africa:
Tourist Visa: a completely and originally filled out application form (in black letters, no copy or fax) – passport with at least 2 blank pages, which must be valid for at least 30 days after the planned departure – 1 passport photo (no scan) – proof of sufficient funds for the Residence (copy of the last two salary slips) – copy of the return or onward travel ticket or booking confirmation from the travel agency – fee in cash or by bank transfer – if you are coming from yellow fever area, international vaccination certificate with proof of the valid yellow fever vaccination – international health insurance certificate – declaration or documents indicating the purpose and duration prove the trip (hotel bookings, rental car reservations, etc.) – invitation from the host from South Africa with a copy of your ID card, possiblya copy of the passport and permanent residence permit for South Africa is also required here.
Business Visa:a completely and originally filled in application form BI-84 (in black letters, no copy or fax) – 2 original passport photos (no scans) – passport with at least 2 blank pages, which must be valid for at least 30 days after the planned departure – copy of the return or onward travel ticket or booking confirmation from the travel agency – proof of international health insurance – proof of sufficient funds (current account statement and copy of the last two salary slips) – company letter from the German company about the purpose and duration of the trip with a confirmation of costs in English. Information about the company visited in South Africa is expected here. The letter must also confirm that the business traveler has left the company – letter of invitation from the South African company, possibly
A franked and addressed envelope should be enclosed with the application.
Here you can download the visa application form for South Africa.
Cost of issuing a Visa: EUR 52.00.
Processing time: between 3 and 4 weeks
Entry with children:
German: German children’s ID with photo for children under 16 years (should have at least 2 blank pages for visas when starting the trip) or children’s passport (should have at least 2 blank pages for visas when starting the trip).
Austrians: own passport (should have at least 2 blank pages for visas when starting the trip).
Swiss: own passport (should have at least 2 blank pages for visas at the start of the trip).
The same visa requirements apply to children as to their parents.
Minors traveling alone should have a written declaration of consent from both custodial parents; for minors who only travel with one parent, the written declaration of consent of the other parent signed by the Poilzei must be presented.
Entry with pets:
For all animals, an import or transit permit must be applied for from the Director Veterinary Services (Private Bag X138, Pretoria) before departure, which is valid on the day of entry. An additional health certificate is required for each pet, which confirms that the animal comes from a place around which there has been no rabies case within a radius of 25 km in the past 6 months and that the dog / cat has a maximum of 3 years (for cats 1 year) and at least 2 months before entering the country against rabies Pets must wear a microchip for identification.
National currency: 1 South African rand corresponds to 100 cents.
Currency abbreviation: R, ZAR – ABBREVIATIONFINDER.ORG
There are banknotes worth 200, 100, 50, 20, and 10 R. Coins in the nominal amounts 5, 2 and 1 R as well as 50, 20, 10 and 5 cents.
The rand is the leading currency in southern Africa. In Namibia you can easily pay with rand, Lesotho and Swaziland closed a currency union with South Africa, the currencies there have the same value as the rand, which is also accepted as a second currency in the two countries.
Currency exchange: Rand should only be exchanged in South Africa, usually the exchange rates are cheaper here. The international airports have bank counters where you can change your money at the official rate. Money can be exchanged at most banks and hotels, around the clock at Cape Town International Airport.
Exchange rate South African rand:
Currency converter at OANDA
Credit Cards: Eurocard, MasterCard, Diners Club and Visa are widely used, American Express with restrictions. Not all facilities but most hotels accept credit cards.
ATMs: With an EC bank card and pin number, cash can be withdrawn in local currency (R 1000 per day). EC cards that are connected to the Maestro system can be used at international ATMs, which are available in all major cities. ATMs are also located in shopping centers and petrol stations. Major credit cards are also accepted.
Traveler’s checks: Travelers’ checks from major companies are accepted. They should be issued in US dollars, euros or British pounds.
Foreign exchange regulations: The import and export of the national currency is limited to an amount of R 5000. Foreign currencies are not subject to any restrictions when entering and leaving the country.
Bank opening times: Mon – Fri 9 a.m. – 3.30 p.m., Sa 9 a.m. – 11 a.m.
Health and Diseases
South Africa has a high and rapidly increasing rate of the immunodeficiency disease HIV / AIDS. Between 10% and 20% of the adult population may already be infected with HIV. This must be taken into account urgently in personal behavior in the country.
Various prescription drugs (e.g. malarone, doxycycline, Lariam) are available on the market for malaria prophylaxis. The selection and personal adaptation as well as side effects or intolerance to other medications should be discussed with a tropical or travel doctor before taking chemoprophylaxis.
The Kruger Park and the northern coastal plain in the province of Kwazulu-Natal are endemic malaria areas. Recently, malaria diseases, especially “malaria tropica”, have increased significantly. There are other diseases that can only be avoided by mosquito repellent. The greatest risk of infection is from October to May. Chloroquine resistance has been reported.
When entering from a yellow fever area, vaccination against yellow fever must be demonstrated (exception: children who are not older than 1 year).
Meaningful vaccinations are currently: protection against tetanus, diphtheria, polio, typhoid and hepatitis A, for long-term stay over three months also hepatitis B. With special exposure (stay in the country, hunting, jogging etc.) vaccination against rabies can be very useful.
The reduced ozone layer in the atmosphere above the Antarctic forces appropriate sun protection measures (information published daily in the South African media). Sun protection through skin-covering clothing and sunscreen (SPF> 20) is absolutely necessary.
The medical care is generally good. The private hospitals in the big cities are of European level, while the state hospitals are overcrowded and are suffering from budget cuts. Medical care in rural areas is not as good as in large cities. Tap water is harmless to health, if not particularly tasty.
The dengue fever transmitted by mosquitoes occurs nationwide. Effective insect protection is recommended.
Health certificate: A health certificate is required for work stays.
The tap water is harmless to health in large cities, though not particularly palatable (chlorine taste). You will find a thermos with drinking water in most hotel rooms. In rural areas, however, tap water is not always germ-free and should be sterilized. Milk is pasteurized and dairy products, meat products, poultry, seafood, fruits and vegetables can be eaten without worry. However, meat and vegetables should be cooked and not just warmed up.
In addition to my general disclaimer, please note the following important note:
A guarantee for the correctness and completeness of the medical information as well as a liability for possible damage cannot be assumed. You stay responsible for your healthy.
Presentation of the different travel options
South African Airways (SA) is the largest national company, and Comair (MN) and Kulula fly within South Africa . Nationwide Airlines ceased flight operations on April 29, 2008. Cape Town, Durban, Pretoria, Port Elizabeth, George, East London, Kimberley and Bloemfontein are the most popular destinations. There are also connecting flights to the provincial cities from these airports.
Starlight Cruises operate between the country’s main ports.
Passenger trains run between the larger cities and are known as name trains. There is state rail transport (Spoornet) and private luxury trains. The trains are generally quite slow. Metro trains run regularly in the urban areas of Pretoria / Johannesburg and Cape Town. Local traffic around Johannesburg should be avoided. All major routes should be booked in good time. A seat reservation must be booked at least 24 hours in advance. Spoornet offers rail passes as well as child, student and senior discounts.
The most impressive train journeys the world counts a ride on the famous Blue Train, which runs between Pretoria and Cape Town and between Pretoria and Durban. Each Blue Train compartment has a bathroom, a telephone, a television and air conditioning.
Rovos Rail trains also belong to the luxury class. Rovos Rail offers trips on the Pretoria – Cape Town, George – Cape Town and Pretoria – Durban routes.
The Trans-Oranje InterCity train runs weekly between Cape Town and Durban.
The Trans-Natal-Express luxury train serves the Durban – Johannesburg route five times a week and the Trans-Karoo-Express runs daily between Cape Town and Johannesburg.
The Shosholoza Meyl serves the following routes: from Johannesburg to East London, Musina, Kimberley, Pietermaritzburg, Nelspruit, Komatipoort, Polokwane, Bloemfontein, Port Elizabeth, Cape Town and Durban, from Durban to Cape Town.
The Shongololo Express runs regularly between Cape Town and Johannesburg. The train covers the 4,000 kilometers in 18 days. The Shongololo Express also runs along the Garden Route.
South Africa is very suitable for driving in your own vehicle. The road network is good almost everywhere. A third of the streets in South Africa are paved and the tourist highlights are clearly signposted. The Automobile Association Automobile Association of South Africa (AA) offers extensive information and provides members of other automobile clubs with maps. Most petrol stations are open 24/7. Only cash payment is accepted at petrol stations.
There are both large international and smaller regionally operating providers for South Africa rental cars in all cities and at the airports. The minimum age to drive a rental vehicle in South Africa is 21 years.
Documents: An international driver’s license is required, but this is only valid if the national driver’s license is also included. With an English translation, the national driving license alone is also valid.
Traffic regulations: left-hand traffic, seat belts.
Numerous bus companies travel the routes between the cities of South Africa, the buses are generally air-conditioned. Three bus companies offer connections between the main centers: Translux Express (largest provider of bus connections), Greyhound Cityliner and Intercape Mainliner (mainly in the west of South Africa). Baz Bus transports backpackers from youth hostel to youth hostel. Advance bookings should be made at least 24 hours in advance, much earlier during the South African school holidays. Taxis there are in all cities, at airports and in front of hotels, they mostly drive according to fixed tariffs (about $ 1.10 per kilometer). On long-haul routes, you should compare the prices before you travel. Usually you have to call a taxi or look for a taxi rank (usually in the city center).
All major cities have good and cheap bus and train networks. Fares in Cape Town and Johannesburg are calculated by zone. In addition, there are minibuses and shared taxis everywhere and they should be used with caution – they are often involved in accidents. The prices of regular taxis are higher within cities than on long distances.
Attractions in South Africa
South Africa has a very varied landscape and is often called “World in One Country”. Most visitors to South Africa travel to the Eastern Cape, the Western Cape and KwaZulu / Natal.
The South African region of Gauteng is known for its numerous lakes with opportunities for fishing and bird watching. Also are national parks and nature reserves tourist attractions. Johannesburg is the largest city in the region and the economic center of southern Africa. Large gold deposits are mined in the surrounding mines.
The best view over Johannesburg can be found on the 202 meter high Carlton Panorama. However, the highest point on the urban area is Northcliff Ridge.
You can take a trip back in time in Gold Reef City, a reconstructed gold mining town. Johannesburg’s most beautiful art collection with works from South Africa, England, Holland and France is in the Johannesburg Art Gallery. The Harvey Wildflower Park offers an impressive view of the city. The Johannesburg Botanical Garden is known for its numerous exotic tree species and more than 4,000 types of roses.
The shopping streets in the Johannesburg suburb of Sandton with a wide range of boutiques, shops and restaurants are particularly suitable for shopping.
The city’s museums are definitely worth a visit: medicinal herbs and medicinal herbs from African medicine men are presented in the Adler Museum, while the Africana Museum focuses on ethnological collections. The history of South African Jews is discussed in the Jewish Museum.
Pretoria is the South African administrative capital and shines with numerous wooded parks and several interesting museums, including Fort Klapperkop (a military museum), the Geological Museum known for its gem and fossil collection and the natural history Transvaal Museum. Those interested in theater should visit the State Theater. Visitors who are more into nature will opt for the Austin Roberts Bird Sanctuary or nature reserves such as Fountains Valley Nature Reserve, Derdepoort Regional Park, National Botanical Gardens, Meyers Park Nature Reserve and Wonderboom Nature Reserve.
Many animal and plant species can also be found in the Magalies mountain range. There are also numerous privately run animal and nature reserves in the region. Visitors can take a look at the earliest human history in the Sterkfontein Caves (near Krugersdorp). This is the place where a human skull about a million years old was found.
The landscape of the Mpumalanga plateau extends to the foot of the Drakensberg, where the savannah landscape merges into the so-called Lowveld.
The huge Kruger National Park (around 20,000 square kilometers) is probably one of the main reasons for most travelers in South Africa for their trip. The park is a retreat for many typical African savannah animals. With a little luck you can meet lions, for elephants, wildebeests, leopards, buffalos, hippos, giraffes and zebras. The infrastructure (accommodation, roads, possible activities) of the national park is very good.
On the western border of the Kruger National Park, there are several high-class, privately run animal reserves that showcase the flora and fauna of the Lowveld protect (Klaserie, Timbavati, Umbata Nature Reserve and Sabi-Sand Reserve). The cross-border Great Limpopo Transfrontier Park (GLTP) is planned to cover an area of around 100,000 square kilometers – larger than, for example, Portugal – it is intended to bring together the Kruger National Park with the adjacent Gaza wildlife park (Mozambique) and the Gonarezhou National Park (Zimbawe). Once these national parks are connected to some other protected areas, the Great Limpopo Transfrontier Park will be the world’s largest national park.
The approximately 26 km long and up to 800 m deep Blyde River Canyon is the third largest canyon in the world. The Blyderivierspoort Nature Reserve covers an area of 29,000 hectares against the backdrop of the Drakensberg.
The region can be hiked on several routes, the most popular being the Summit Route. Here you cross the 2,150 m Long Tom Pass and can admire the magnificent backdrop of Mount Anderson and Mauchsberg. Then you get to the village of Graskop in the Drakensberg foothills. The route continues to the former gold mining town of Pilgrim’s Rest and to a protected area with numerous waterfalls and gorges on Mount Sheba. The next attractions are the free-standing granite column Pinnacle Rock and the wonderful view over the Lowveld from the 1,000 m high God’s Window. Among other things, you can see the Berlin and Lisbon cases and see Berlin Falls. The Bourke’s Luck Potholes are often photographed, holes in the rock washed out by the water. The trail continues through the Blyde River Canyon and into the Blyderivierspoort Nature Reserve.
Other highlights of the Summit Route are the Museum of Man, where the archaeological history of the region is presented, the Molopong Valley with its Echo Caves and Stone and Iron Age tools, and the Abel Erasmus Pass. The last stage leads to the Olifant River.
The city of Nelspruit is a very good starting point for visiting the Sudwala caves in Mankelekele mountain. Guided tours are also offered here.
In Durban (KwaZulu / Natal) you can visit the harbor, the Golden Mile beach promenade, many temples (eg the Temple of Understanding) and mosques such as the Jumah Mosque.
The city’s port , Durban Harbor, is the largest in South Africa. Interesting sights include the Sea Worlds Aquarium and Dolphinarium, the Maritime Museum, the Local History Museum and the Mashu Collection for Ethnology. The Natural History Museum is located in the colonial City Hall. South African art and handicrafts are shown in the Durban Art Gallery. Many markets such as Victoria Street Market invite you to shop. You can retreat from the hustle and bustle of the city in gardens such as the Japanese Gardens, the Botanical Garden or the Amphitheater Gardens.
Between the KwaZulu / Natals coast and the Drakensberg lies the Midlands, a beautiful region with small villages and towns, where forest alternates with farmland. The Midlands are home to numerous species of mammals and birds.
The Drakensberg is the largest mountain range in South Africa, where you can go mountain climbing, hiking and horse riding.
National parks and nature reserves worth visiting include the Royal Natal National Park, the Kamberg Nature Reserve, the Spioenkop Public Resort Nature Reserve, the Vergelegen Nature Reserve and the Giant’s Castle Game Reserve. Hikes can be undertaken to the 3,149m high Cathkin Peak, Cathedral Peak (3,004m) or the 3,377m high Champagne Castle. The view from many passes is great , especially the Sani Pass and the Van Reenen’s Pass are worth the climb.
The city of Pietermaritzburg is located in the central Zululand. Every September the azaleas bloom, which give the city a very special decoration. The Voortrekker Museum and the Natal Museum are worth visiting museums in the city. Pietermaritzburg is also a good starting point for visits to the Albert Falls Public Resort and Nature Reserve and Howick Falls.
In the northern part of the province of KwaZulu / Natal you will find very beautiful national and nature parks with rich fauna and flora such as the Kosi Bay Nature Reserve, the Hluhluwe-Umfolozi Game Reserve, the Ndumu Game Reserve, the Mkuzi Game Reserve or the Itala Game Reserve. The coast is best known for its white sandy beaches, including Marina Beach, Tongaat Beach and Ifafa Beach. The most popular vacation spots are on the southern coast.
The Eastern Cape is very diverse. Here you can find landscapes as diverse as the semi-desert of the Great Karoo, the Knysna Forest or the agricultural areas between Little Karoo and Long Kloof. The region’s largest city, Port Elizabeth, is of particular cultural interest. The Opera House hosts numerous performances in the fields of music, ballet, theater and opera. However, the Mannville Open Air Theater in St. George’s Park is also worth a visit. Water sports enthusiasts will get their money’s worth on the beaches of Port Elizabeth.
One of the last narrow-gauge trains in South Africa that is pulled by a steam locomotive is the Apple Express. He has been driving between Port Elizabeth and Loerie on Long Kloof since 1906. An oceanarium, tropical house and snake park is located on the coastal promenade of Humewood. Works of art from the 19th and 20th centuries can be viewed in the King George IV art gallery, while Settler’s Park Nature Reserve is known for its flora.
The Addo Elephant National Park, founded in 1931, is located 72 kilometers north of Port Elizabeth. As the name suggests, it was primarily created to protect elephants, but other, sometimes endangered species such as black rhino, antelope, buffalo and more than 170 bird species also live here.
A large number of animal and plant species can also be seen in the Zuurberg National Park in the Winterhoek Mountains.
The city of East London is located on the eastern coast of South Africa. Visitors come mainly because of the beautiful beaches (including Orient Beach and Eastern Beach) with numerous entertainment options.
From the highlands of the Karoo is a highlands you can visit the Mountain Zebra National Park. In the Karoo nature reserve.
The Garden Route takes visitors through the Outeniqua Mountains, Little Karoo, Tsitsikamma Coastal Park and the Swart Mountains. The name of the Garden Route refers to the rich flora. Jeffrey’s Bay is particularly popular among surfers, while St. Francis Bay has the best beaches. Star outdoor farms can be visited at Oudtshoorn, among others.
The beautiful landscape of the Western and Southern Cape stretches from Lambert’s Bay. Very good wines are also grown here. The most beautiful and most visited city in South Africa is Cape Town at the foot of Table Mountain on the coast of the Atlantic Ocean. Well-known sights include the Malay Quarter, the Castle of Good Hope and the Nico Malan Theater Complex. The opportunities to play sports or just shop here are very good. Victoria & Alfred harbor has been turned into an entertainment center.
Not far from Cape Town, on the southern tip of the Cape Peninsula is the Cape of Good Hope Nature Reserve with numerous animal and plant species. The way to the Nature Reserve leads through many beautiful, smaller holiday resorts and fishing villages (including Hout Bay, Llandudno and Fish Hoek). The route to Chapman’s Peak from Hout Bay offers wonderful views. An important South African wine center is the pretty Stellenbosch with its village museum and the Dutch Reformed Church. Through the Drakenstein Valley run several wine roads. The valley is characterized by vineyards, farms and orchards. There is another national park near Swellendam, the Bontebok National Park.
The North Cape wilderness stretches from the west coast along the border regions with Namibia and Botswana to the North West Province and the Free State. The southwestern part of the North Cape plunges into a colorful sea of wildflowers in spring. The south is part of the Great Karoo, the north is already part of the Kalahari. The most famous attraction in the city of Kimberley is the Big Hole, the world’s largest man-made hole. You can find out more about the diamonds mined here in the De Beers Hall Museum.
In Vaalbos National Park near Kimberley live among others kudus and giraffes. An important archaeological excavation site is Wonderwerk Cave, where some of the oldest traces of fire use were found.
The 56-meter-high Augrabis waterfalls are located 120 km to the west of the desert town of Upington on the Orange River. The Kgalagadi Transfrontier National Park stretches across the border between South Africa and Botswana and is one of the largest national parks in the world. Wild flowers bloom in the semi-desert Namaqualand after the winter rain. The Richtersveld National Park
is primarily known for numerous types of succulents.
The Free State is mainly characterized by wide grasslands, which are only interrupted by granite rocks. To the east are the foothills of the Maluti Mountains. Bloemfontain is the provincial capital of Bloemfontein and has several museums and exhibitions. These include the National Museum, the Fourth Raadsaal (Parliament) of the historic Republic of the Free State and the Oliewenhuis Art Gallery.
The casino town of Sun City is located in the North West Province. Those who have had enough of the city’s distractions can visit the nearby Pilanesberg Game Reserve. It is the oldest protected area in this province of South Africa. Further south is Rustenberg with the Rustenberg Nature Reserve. Places like Klerksdorp and the university town of Potchefstroom are also worth visiting.
The Limpopo province is bordered in the north by Botswana and Zimbabwe and in the east by Mozambique, partly also the Kruger National Park is in its area. In the southern part is Warmbaths, which is known for its hot mineral springs. Polokwane (formerly Pietersburg) is the provincial capital, a visit to the Bakone Malapa Museum is particularly interesting. The Waterberg Mountains in the western part of the province are ideal for hiking. The north with its rich vegetation (avocados and mangoes grow here in part) is an impressive contrast to the dry south.
Eastern Cape in South Africa
The Eastern Cape (in German Eastern or Eastern Cape) is a province in South Africa and probably one of the best known regions of this country. Although the name clearly refers to the east, the Eastern Cape is more in the southeast of the Republic of South Africa. The extraordinarily beautiful and vast landscapes attract many visitors to the Eastern Cape Province.
Geography and life on the Eastern Cape
On an area of 169,580 square kilometers, the Eastern Cape shows very varied. Around 6.85 million people live in this picturesque landscape, 85 percent of whom belong to the Xhosa ethnic groupbelong. The Eastern Cape is the only South African province where the Xhosa make up the majority of the population. When the Cape Province and the former homeland Ciskei merged with Tranksei, the province of the Eastern Cape emerged. This happened in 1994. Bisho was declared the capital of the Eastern Cape Province.
But Bisho is not the largest city in the province. This position is held by East London and Port Elizabeth. These cities are culturally significant centers that are also of great importance for the province’s economy. Port Elizabeth, for example, is the most important industrial location in Eastern Cape. East London has also taken a leading position in the province’s industrial sector.
If you want to transport your goods by plane from the Eastern Cape Province, or if you are traveling by plane, you will either end up in Port Elizabeth, East London or in Mthatha. These three cities are the only ones in the Eastern Cape that have an airport.
The province is also very impoverished due to the low mineral resources in the Eastern Cape. The Eastern Cape region is said to be one of the poorest in all of South Africa.
Eastern Cape Attractions It is the
landscapes that are considered the main attraction of the Eastern Cape. The almost untouched regions and the natural beauty of the Eastern Cape are what attract numerous photo tourists. It should be mentioned that there is an incredibly wide variety of landscapes in the Eastern Cape that is second to none.
In addition to the Great Karoo wasteland, the impressive Knysna Forest also exists here. There are also plains like the Little Karoo and the Long Kloof, some of which have fertile farmland.
There are vegetation zones in the Eastern Cape such as subtropical forest vegetation, fynbos vegetation, numerous grasslands to the thorn bush savannah.
The Tsitsikamma National Park in the Hogsback region is particularly worth seeing, especially the evergreen forests there with native tree species.
Free State in South Africa
Free State is a South African province located in the center of the Republic of South Africa. The history of the province is very long and varied, ranging from conquests and state building to the current status as a province. The Free State area used to be the independent Orange Free State and was an independent Boer state from 1854 to 1910. Today, many visitors come to the province for the Golden Gate National Park, which shows all the beauty of Free State nature.
The Free State province now consists of 5 districts and 20 municipalities and is one of the flat areas in the country. The south-east of Free State forms the border with the neighboring state of Lesotho.
Economy and Life in the Province of Free State
The central lowland of the Republic of South Africa is the heart of the province. Here is mainly Argrarwirtschaft and traditional Agriculture operated.
More than 30,000 farms not only shape the landscape of the Free State Province, but also bring over 70 percent of the country’s agricultural products to the Republic of South Africa. There is also a very rich deposit of gold and diamonds that are mined.
Welkom is the largest city in the province. Welkom is followed by cities like Bloemfontein, Botshabelo, Virginia, Kutlwanong and also Kroonstad.
Attractions in the Free State Province
As in many parts of the country, there are numerous nature reserves, reserves and nature reserves in Free State. It can be seen that the protection of the country’s typical nature plays an important role.
The national parks and nature reserves of Caledon Nature Reserve, Erfins Dam Nature Reserve, the famous Golden Gate National Park and the Kalkfontein Nature Reserve are particularly recommended for a visit.
The Free State people
Different ethnic groups live in the Free State province. These differ in origin, culture and traditions. Around 88 percent of the provincial population are black, 8.8 percent of the total population in the province of Free State are white citizens. Around 3.1 percent colored Afrikaans live in the province, as well as a 0.1 percent minority of Asians and Indians. The reason for this small number of Asian citizens in the province lies in the apartheid phase. At that time, Asians were prohibited from entering the province. Even today, very few Asians move to the Free State province.
Free State Province History
Free State was once an Orange Free State. When the then Cape colony was conquered by the British, most of the Boers living there left the region. They feared that their culture and thus their identity would be at risk. The Boers finally reached Oranje and Vaal and settled inland. At that time the Boers called themselves Africans. They founded independent Boer Republics inland. The Orange Free State was one of them.
For a short time, from 1948 to 1954, this area also belonged to the British-controlled regions. However, the Orange Free State was able to become self-employed again. The Boer War ended in 1900 and the British annexed the area again. In 1910 the area of the Orange Free State became a province of the South African Union. In 1995 the province’s name was changed to Free State.
Gauteng in South Africa
Gauteng is the name of a South African province. The area of the province of Gauteng is located around the capital Johannesburg. Gauteng’s history is still very short, even if the area has been inhabited for a very long time. The province itself first emerged in 1994 as part of the restructuring of the provinces of the Republic of South Africa. Gauteng was formed from part of the Transvaal province.
The province is geographically divided into the districts of Sedibeng, Metsweding, West Rand, City of Johannesburg, City of Tshwane and Ekurhuleni. The municipalities belong to the Sedibeng district Emfuleni, Lesedi and Midvall, Metsweding include the municipalities of Kungwini and Nokeng tsa Taemane. West Rand includes the municipalities of Randfontein, Westonaria and Mogale City.
The name of the province of Gauteng
The history of the name of the province is longer than the actual history of Gauteng. Today’s Gauteng wasn’t called that from then on. The province was originally called Pretoria-Witwatersrand-Vereeniging. Already in December of the founding year 1994 the province was called Gauteng.
The meaning of the name is quickly explained. The word Gauteng means “place of gold” and comes from the South Sotho language.
The geography of the province of Gauteng
Overall, the province of Gauteng occupies only 1.4 percent of the total area of the Republic of South Africa. This corresponds to a size of only 17,000 square kilometers. This makes Gauteng the smallest of the provinces in South Africa. But Gauteng is heavily populated. More than 8.8 million people live here, which makes up almost 20 percent of the total population of South Africa. Numerous new residents are also coming. Every year, residents of other South African regions migrate and settle in Gauteng. The birth rate is also very high, so that the total population is steadily increasing. The population has increased by 20 percent within four years. The province of Gauteng has recently displaced the most populous province of KwaZulu-Natal from the top position.
Although the province has a very small area, it has an astonishing economic power. This is where the Republic’s economic center is located and up to 34 percent of South Africa and over 10 percent of Africa’s gross domestic product is generated.
Johannesburg is the largest city in the province and its metropolis. The gap between the rich and the poorest in the province is particularly wide. This wide rift also fuels envy and the hatred that goes with it. In the Gauteng province, especially in Johannesburg, the crime and murder rate is alarmingly high. Nevertheless, Johannesburg is one of the most interesting African cities.
KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa
The province of KwaZulu-Natal is located on the east coast of the Republic of South Africa. The north of the region borders on Swaziland, Mozambique and the South African province of Mpumalanga. The territory of the Eastern Cape begins in the south of KwaZulu-Natal, the west of the province borders on Lesotho. In addition to diverse nature and landscapes, visitors will also find bathing beaches on the Indian Ocean.
The Province of KwaZulu-Natal and its Formation
In 1994, the Republic of South Africa was reorganized. In the course of these changes, today’s province of KwaZulu-Natalv was created. The area of the former homeland Kwa Zulu was combined with the then province of Natal.
In the area of today’s province of KwaZulu-Natal there is also the traditional settlement area of the Zulu. This makes KwaZulu-Natal the only province in the country to include the name of a group in its name.
The areas of the province of KwaZulu-Natal
South Africans also like to call the province of KwaZulu-Natal the garden province of South Africa. Basically, the landscape of KwaZulu-Natal can be divided into three zones.
On the one hand, you can find the areas along the coast here. These are mostly flat and rise only moderately hilly. Then comes the second zone, which is a hilly landscape. The third zone is formed by the mountain regions that include high mountains. The third category includes the Drakensberg in the west of the province. The Limpopo Mountains, which tower high and commandingly in the north, also belong to the third zone. In higher regions, the climate is warm and humid, as in the rest of the province of KwaZulu-Natal, but in winter it can get dry and very cold.
Parts of the coast were previously covered by tropical forests. However, these had to make way for arable landscapes and so sugar cane is mainly grown here today. In addition, the tropical climate is used to grow bananas, mangoes, lychees, pineapples, guavas and other tropical fruits.
Along the sandy beaches, which stretch almost endlessly on the north and south coast of KwaZulu-Natal, many tourists from home and abroad indulge in relaxing vacation days. Here you will find wonderfully warm water that invites you to swim. In addition, there is a lot of delicacies and culinary delights to be discovered here in the typical regional cuisine.
Towns and regions in the province of KwaZulu-Natal
Durban is one of the most famous cities and areas in the province. The city already existed when the Boers settled Natal in 1838. The change of name from Port Natal to Durban occurred later when the British governor D’Urban came here and gave the city its name. Today around 2 million people live in the city, making it the largest city in KwaZulu-Natal. AlsoKloof and Hillscrest, which are in close proximity to the lively city of Durban, are popular travel destinations and major cities in the province.
Limpopo in South Africa
The sonorous name Limpopo belongs to one of the provinces of the Republic of South Africa. This province is located in the north of the country and covers an area of 122,839 square kilometers. Almost 5 million people live here, the capital is Polokwane.
Naming the province of Limpopo
Limpopo is the name of a river after which the province was named. The province name was chosen in 2002, at the same time almost all cities in the province were given a new name.
The area was formerly called Northern Province and was part of the then Transvaal Province until 1994, which no longer exists today.
Geography of the province of Limpopo
The landscapes of Limpopo are diverse. The north borders Botswana and Zimbabwe. The east of the province, however, lies on Mozambique. The famous Kruger National Park, which almost all tourists visit the province, is located in the northern part of Limpopo.
The Limpopo province was divided into several districts and municipalities when it was redesigned. The districts of Aganang, Blouberg, Lepele-Nkumpi, Molemole and Polokwane belong to the district of Capricorn. The municipalities of Ba-Phalaborwa, Maruleng, Greater Giyani, Greater Letaba and Greater Tzaneen belong to the district of Mopani. The Vhembe district consists of the municipalities of Makhado, Musina, Mutale and Thulamela. Waterberg is also a district made up of the municipalities of Bela Bela, Lephalale, Modimolle, Mogalakwena, Mookophong and Thabazimbi as well as Greater Sekhukhune.
There are three major cities in the Limpopo province: Lephalale was formerly known as Ellisras, Musina under Messina and Polokwane is the former Pietersburg.
Limpopo province attractions
As in almost all areas of South Africa, the national parks and nature reserves dominate the sights. There are cross-border national parks that extend to neighboring countries. The Great Limpopo Transfrontier Park and the Limpopo / Shashe Transfrontier Consveration Area are among them.
There are four national parks here, of which the Kruger National Park is by far the most popular among visitors to the Limpopo Province. There are also a number of regional parks and various nature reserves.
Mpumalanga in South Africa
Did you know that Mpumalanga Province is a famous wine region? Yes, that’s actually true. The climatic conditions and the nature of the fertile soil create the best conditions for good wines to thrive in this South African province and to be pressed later.
Incidentally, there is a close connection to North Rhine-Westphalia, because the two areas are partner regions. The name of the province of Mpumalanga means “place where the sun rises”.
The geography of the province of Mpumalanga
The province of Mpumalanga was called Eastern Transvaal until 2002 and is still known to many vacationers in South Africa under this name. Today’s Mpumalanga is located in the northeast of the Republic of South Africa and stretches over 79,512 square kilometers. Around 3.4 million people live in the province, the capital is Nelspruit.
The north of the province of Mpumalanga borders the Limpopo province. The eastern part of Mpumalanga, however, borders on the states of Swaziland and Mozambique, which are also popular destinations for travelers in Mpumalanga. The neighboring province of KwaZulu-Natal can be reached from the southand Free State. The province of Gauteng is in the west.
Attractions in the province of Mpumalanga
The most famous attraction in the province of Mpumalanga is the Kruger National Park, located in the interior of the province. The other national parks and nature reserves are also interesting, but the Kruger National Park is by far the most popular and most visited of its kind.
The province of Mpumalanga is visited by numerous tourists. The reason for this are the beautiful landscapes. In addition to the extensive flora and fauna and the numerous stories about the gold rush, you can also find fascinating legends about the peoples living here.
The variety that holidaymakers or travelers can experience here is great and leaves nothing to be desired. In addition to mountains, passes and narrow valleys, there are babbling brooks, rushing waterfalls and green forests. The possibilities for spending leisure time are endless here. Whether a horse riding excursion, bird watching, hiking or fishing in peace, everything is possible here.
North West in South Africa
North West (in German: Nordwest) is the name of a province in the Republic of South Africa. It borders on neighboring Botswana and offers wonderful excursions for holidaymakers and travelers. The adjacent Kalahari Desert is very impressive, which extends partly into the area of the province of North West.
The province of North West emerged when an administrative reorganization in South Africa was completed in 1994. At that time, the Cape Province was divided into different provinces. This is how North West was created. North West also contains former territory of the then Transvaal province and of the Homeland Bophuthatswana. The landscape of the province of North West is characterized by flat and flat terrain.
The province of North West is divided into several districts: Bojanala Platinum, which houses the municipalities of Mortele, Madibeng, Rustenburg, Kgetlengrivier and Moses Kotane, the district of Ngaka Modiri Molema, which consists of the municipalities of Ratlou, Tswaing, Mafikeng, Ditsobotla and Ramotshere Moiloa is composed of the district of Dr Ruth Segomotsi Mompati, which consists of the municipalities of Kagisano, Naledi, Mamusa, Greater Taung, Molopo and Lekwa Teemane, and the district of Dr Kenneth Kaunda, which includes the municipalities of Ventersdorp, Tlokwe, Matlosana, Maquassi Hills and Merafong City.
Attractions in the province of North West
Britsis one of the most famous cities in the province of North West. Here you will find numerous sights of the region and you can buy beautiful souvenirs in the many small shops. However, the cities of Klerksdorp, Mafikeng and Sun City are also very worth seeing. The cityscapes are very different and have different architectural styles.
It is well worth visiting the outer areas of the province, where you can find impressive natural sights. If you are generally interested in the natural beauties of the province, you should not miss a visit to one of the numerous national parks and nature reserves.
Among other things, theBorakalalo National Park and the Bloemhof Dam Nature Reserve for a visit. If you want to get to know the typical animals and their natural surroundings, you should go to the Botsalano game reserve. Of course there are many other reserves and parks in North West.
The “Las Vegas” of South Africa is a special tourist attraction. The player paradise Sun City is located right next to the Pilanesberg. This wonderful combination of beautiful landscapes of the mountain region and the player idyll with jackpot opportunities attract numerous holidaymakers. Happiness is often challenged here. And if you are unlucky, the landscapes in the area offer great hiking opportunities. Daytime tourists often come from neighboring regions to try their luck.
Northern Cape in South Africa
The Northern Cape, like all provinces of South Africa, has picturesque landscapes that give the typical picture that tourists expect from South Africa.
Geography and nature of the Northern Cape
The Northern Cape is a province of the Republic of South Africa and is geographically located in the northwest of the country. The province was created in the course of the division of the Cape Provinces in 1994. More than 30 percent of the South African territory belongs to the Province of the Northern Cape. In terms of area, the Northern Cape is the largest province in the Republic of South Africa. It is the most sparsely populated in relation to the other provinces and has the lowest population density.
The west of the province lies on the picturesque coast to the sometimes very wild Atlantic Ocean. It is this region that is particularly popular with tourists from home and abroad. But not only the Atlantic Ocean and its coastal regions are unique and fantastically beautiful, but also the numerous nature reserves that have been put under protection because of their special flora and fauna.
The north of the Northern Cape Province borders Botswana and Namibia. Vacationers in these regions have the opportunity to get to know the neighboring countries.
Attractions of the Northern Cape
In addition to the coastal region on the Atlantic Ocean, numerous other natural sites are considered attractions of the Northern Cape. The national parks are at the top of the list of visitors to the Northern Cape. The large selection does not make it easy for tourists to choose a park.
The Augrabies Falls National Park is one of the most frequently visited. Even the Mokala National Park and the Richtersveld National Park located in the province of Northern Cape. There is also the Namaqua National Park and the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park, some of which correspond to the former area of the Kalahari Gemsbok National Park. There are also 7 nature reserves, which you can also visit. All in all, nature lovers and visitors to nature parks have a large selection.
Northern Cape people
Over half of the people living here are African. This population group makes up around 57 percent of the total population of the province. The second largest group is the Setswana, which makes up 33 percent of the population. The IsiXhosa follow with 5 percent and form a minority with the English-born residents, who make up around 2 percent.
Western Cape in South Africa
The Western Cape is known as the Western Cape. The Western Cape is a province in South Africa and is located in the southwestern part of the republic.
The picturesque landscape of the Atlantic, with its beautiful and rough sides, surrounds the Western Cape. The province is partly located on the Indian Ocean. The current province of Western Cape is made up of parts of the former Cape Province and consists of 6 districts and 24 municipalities. The Western Cape Province was founded in 1994.
Sights and tourist attractions of the Western Cape
The most famous city in the province is Cape Town. Over a million people live here. Cape Town is extremely popular with tourists and vacationers from all over the world. It is the city’s numerous attractions that attract many people to Cape Town. But it’s not just the buildings and the lively city of South Africa that draws visitors to the Western Cape. It is also the many different ethnic groups that live here. Traditional families live here alongside very modern citizens. However, there is a wide range between rich and poor.
The Western Cape Province is extremely diverse. Not only the traditional villages are interesting for visitors, but also the national parks. Nature conservation is a big issue in South Africa, so here in the Western Cape there are many national parks, nature reserves and nature reserves.
The Agulhas National Park, the Bontebok National Park and the Karoo National Park are the largest and most popular national parks in the Western Cape. Some worth visiting nature reserves are Anysber Nature Reserve, the Bird Island Nature Reserve or the Boosmansbos Nature Reserve. In general, visitors to the nature reserves in the Western Cape will find numerous opportunities to join guided tours.
South Africa history
The San (Bushmen) were the first settlers in what is now South Africa. They were followed and ousted by Khoikhoi and Bantu. The Dutch East India Company brought the first European settlers to the Cape of Good Hope in 1652. They founded a colony, which until the end of the 18th century had only about 15,000 residents. Known as Boers or Africans, the white population spoke a Dutch dialect – Afrikaans. As early as 1795, the settlers tried to establish an independent republic.
After Britain in 1795 occupied the Cape Colony, the British took possession of the colony in 1815 and sent 5,000 settlers to the area. The Anglicization of the government and the liberation of the slaves in 1833 prompted about 12,000 Africans to begin the ” great trek ” north and east. They founded the republics Transvaal and Orange Free State in African tribal areas.
The discovery of diamonds in 1867 and gold in 1876 brought an influx of “outlanders” into the republics. The newly found mineral resources made the republics for the Prime Minister of the Cape Colony, Cecil Rhodes, attractive. Rhodes planned to trigger an “outlander” rebellion that Armed Forces under Leander Starr Jameson would help. The plan failed and Rhodes had to resign in 1895. The war between the British and Boers broke out on October 11, 1899. The Boers had to acknowledge their defeat in 1902, and in 1910 the South African Union was formed from four provinces, the two former Boer Republics, the Cape Colony and Natal. The Bure Louis Botha became the first prime minister. Organized African political activity began in 1912 with the establishment of the African National Congress.
Jan Christiaan Smuts led the Union into World War II against nationalist resistance on the Allied side. South Africa became a member of the United Nations in 1945 but refused to sign the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Apartheid – racial segregation – dominated domestic politics after the nationalists gained more influence. They imposed increasingly stringent restrictions on Bantu (black Africans), Asians and Coloreds (in South Africa the term every non-white person). Blacks were no longer allowed to take part in general elections from 1936. In the following fifty years, the non-white population of South Africa was forced to leave designated areas for white people. The Group Areas Act from 1950 and 1986 forced about 1.5 million Africans to move from cities to rural communities, where they lived in bitter poverty and under repressive laws.
South Africa declared itself a republic in 1961 and broke off relations with the Commenwealth due to protests against South Africa’s racist policies. The racist national party, which came to power in 1948, ruled the country for the next 30 years.
In 1960, 70 black demonstrators were killed during a peaceful demonstration in Sharpesville. The African National Congress (ANC), the main anti-paternity organization, was banned in the same year and in 1964 its leader, Nelson Mandela, sentenced to life imprisonment. The black protests against apartheid subsequently grew stronger and more violent. In 1976, an uprising in the black township of Soweto spread to other black townships, leaving 600 dead. International resistance to apartheid has also intensified since the early 1960s. The UN imposed sanctions and many countries sold their South African possessions.
South Africa’s apartheid policy began to weaken when in 1989 FW de Klerk was replaced by PW Botha as president. De Klerk lifted the ANC ban and released his leader Nelson Mandela after 27 years in captivity. The Inkatha Freedom Party, a black opposition group led by Mangosuthu Buthelezi, who has often been accused of working with the apartheid system, has often come into conflict with the ANC during this period.
In 1991, a multi-colored forum led by de Klerk and Mandela, the Convention for Democratic South Africa (CODESA), began work on a new constitution. In 1993, an interim constitution was passed that abolished apartheid and introduced multiracial democracy. South Africa’s peaceful transition from one of the world’s most repressive societies to democracy is a remarkable success. Mandela and de Klerk jointly received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1993.
In 1994 Mandela and the ANC won a clear victory in the first multiracial elections. Six ministers from the National Party and three from the Inkatha Freedom Party also participated in the new government. A new constitution was adopted in May 1996.
In 1997, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, chaired by Desmond Tutu, started hearings on human rights violations between 1960 and 1993. The commission promised amnesty to those who committed crimes under the apartheid system. In 1998 FW de Klerk, PW Botha and ANC leaders testified before the Commission. The people of South Africa grappled with the past in an often painful process.
Nelson Mandela, whose tenure as president confirmed his reputation as one of the world’s most far-sighted statesmen, retired in 1999. On June 2, 1999, Thabo Mbeki, deputy president and pragmatic leader of the ANC, was elected president in a landslide victory.
In his first term in office, Mbeki had to deal primarily with the weak economy and increasing crime. South Africa, the country with the most HIV-positive people in the world (6.5 million in 2005), has been hampered in the fight against AIDS by its President’s controversial views. Mbeki doubted the link between HIV and AIDS and claimed that the West was exaggerating the epidemic to make profits from medication. The international community and most South African leaders, including Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu, condemned Mbeki’s stance. In 2006, 60 international scientists called government policy “catastrophic and pseudoscientific”.
As expected, the ANC won another landslide victory in South Africa’s general election on April 15, 2004, with around 70% of the vote. Thabo Mbeki took up his second term.
In December 2007, the African National Committee elected Jacob Zuma to their leader and ousted Mbeki, who had controlled the party for the past ten years. With this win, Zuma is likely to become president in 2009 when Mbeki’s term expires. Zuma was acquitted of rape allegations in 2006. At the end of December 2007, prosecutors again raised allegations of corruption against Zuma and heard him in court on “various cases of extortion, money laundering, corruption and fraud”. Zuma’s lawyers accused Mbeki of sabotaging Zuma’s political career. A high court judge dismissed the corruption charge against Zuma in September 2008. The judge also criticized President Mbeki for attempting to influence the Zuma trial.
Under pressure from the leaders of the African National Congress (ANC), Mbeki announced only a few days after Zuma’s acquittal that he would resign. Mbeki’s resignation ended several years of bitter power struggles between Zuma and Mbeki. On September 25, 2008, the parliament elected Kgalema Motlanthe, a labor leader during apartheid, as president. Zuma must first be a member of parliament before he can be elected president. The parliamentary elections are scheduled for early 2009.
On his first day as president, Motlanthe introduced modern and effective methods (eg treatment with antirretroviral drugs) to combat the AIDS crisis in South Africa.
In November 2008, 6400 members of the ANC held a convention in Johannesburg and decided to found a new party to challenge the dominance of the ANC. The delegates, many of whom supported former President Mbeki, expressed dissatisfaction with the leadership of the ANC. In December 2008, the new party, the Congress of the People (COPE), elected former Defense Minister Mosiuoa Lekota as its leader.