South Africa

Not Just a Walk in the Park

South Africa's Kruger National ParkOne of the best safari destinations in the world, without question, South Africa's Kruger National Park offers some of the most exciting opportunities to experience a world of bio diversity and wildlife. As soon as I got the urge to visit this amazing park and its unique culture, I made my way to South Africa for a three week trip. The park, whose abundance of wildlife has turned it into a huge tourist industry, is quite possibly the best place to view game and birds in the world. Visitors all over the world come to visit the fascinating wild animals that reside in the park. The animals aren’t the only populations that have lived in Kruger: a vast number of different cultures and civilizations have settled here over time, with archaeological findings showing human populations existing here as far back as 1.5 million years ago.

South Africa Travel Diary

The warmth of Durban (Photo: Lesli Lundgren)South Africa, placed as it is on the very southern tip of the Great Continent and home as it is to such immense beauty and varied landscapes, has so much to offer everyone who makes their way to visit here that a trip is undermined neither by the length of their stay nor by the breadth of their budget. One of the most exciting places to enjoy - both as a destination and as a starting point - is Durban. This sunshine city on the east coast has a plethora of beaches to offer up to sun seekers the world over. My favourite time of year here is around July, when the ‘Gunston 500’ is held at Durban beach and surfers from all points of the globe come by to compete. I would spend the day just lazily basking in the sun like a lizard while watching the endless array of surfers manoeuvre their boards adroitly, looking like demi-gods as they cut and slice the glassy tubular waves rolling in to shore. The temperature at this time of year is mild and the days are generally filled with sunshine and clear blue skies, which makes it all the more attractive to the public who have little choice but to sit down for a while and admire the stealth of those who ride the waves.

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 Full name: Republic of South Africa

 Population: 48.8 million (CIA, 2012)

 Capital: Pretoria (administrative capital)

 Largest city: Johannesburg

 Area: 1.22 million sq.km. (470,693.3 sq. mi.)

 Major languages: IsiZulu, IsiXhosa,  Afrikaans, Sepedi, English, Setswana,  Sesotho, Xitsonga, siSwati, Tshivenda,  isiNdebele, Other

 Major religions: Protestant, Catholic,  Muslim, Other

 Monetary unit: Rand

 GDP per capita: US $11,000

 Internet domain: .za

 International dialling code: +27

 Source: CIA World Factbook