Guest post by Tim Ambler
South Africa is a luxurious country situated, as indicated by the name, to the south of Africa’s continent. The country has some of the most beautiful landscapes in the continent. South Africa was originally the country of settlement for many Bantu speaking tribes. In fact archeological sites in the country offer evidence that suggests that many of the African tribes originated from South Africa or had at one time made South Africa their home. South Africa has become one of the famous countries in regards to archaeological and historical significance. Although the country was colonized for a very long time, many of the South African cultures remained intact. Furthermore, colonization led to a largely diverse population, with many original cultures taking up modernity while maintaining their original nature. South Africans speak more than eleven languages, and are known to be among the happiest and most hospitable people in the world. Despite maintaining many of its original forms, South Africa is the second most developed country in Africa following Nigeria. The country is fast catching up and it is estimated that in less than one decade, South Africa will be the most developed country in Africa. South Africa has transformed itself into the most luxurious and exotic tourism spot in the world. The country receives millions of visitors each year. The country has become even more famous since hosting the 2010 World Cup.
Nature At Its Best
South Africa’s natural environment has drawn many tourists and visitors who come to the country to experience the best of Africa. Often south Africa has been referred to as the “Pearl of Africa.” Some of the main attractions in this country include nature reserves such as Barberspan, which has the widest variety of bird species either airborne or water borne. The reserve is surrounded by all season water bodies which makes it an ideal place for picnics and other gatherings. Cape Town, the capital of South Africa, hosts some of the most majestic mountains, grassy landscapes and beautiful lakes, which have been protected and conserved to create beautiful natural reserves that are quite a sight. These include Cape Point and Table National Park, which can actually be accessed by foot.
There are safari walks and botanic tours as provided by the management of the park, in addition to hiking experiences that include a dinner at the top of the mountain. Some of the Table Mountains such as Lion’s head, a mountain that resembles the head of a lion from a distance, have cable transport that takes tourists and visitors to the top peaks without the hustle of a hike for those who do not extended walks. On the other hand, for people who love hiking, the cable cars can get you to the most famous and best trails for hiking.
Experience the Local Culture
South Africa has rich and diverse cultures that have been of interest to many tourists and visitors to the country. To ensure that all visitors experience the best of South African cultures, communities have built small cultural villages that are sort of like museums for their culture, housing and giving information on the different aspects of their peoples and traditions. For example, Stewart’s farm is the home of the KwaZulu Natal cultural village. Visitors to this farm are treated to age old traditions of this culture, listen to traditional story tellers, and participate in some of the traditional dances and festivals depending on their time of arrival. Isinamva village, located in Mount Frere, is the most authentic village, offering the best of the Xhosa culture. Visitors can actually experience almost all aspects of the culture, including some visits to the traditional healers, participation in marriage ceremonies, prayers and complimentary traditional meals which you can either prepare yourself or have made by the traditional cooks located in the village. Visitors to all cultural villages in South Africa can interact with the elders and community members for an entire day. It is therefore advisable to choose the cultures that you would most like to experience, as you probably will not have time to visit all of the villages.
Accommodation and Outdoor Activities
South Africa has the most beautiful resorts, camp sites and hotels, and they offer world class service. The reserves and parks host safari camps that allow visitors to experience most of their natural environment.
Accommodations often include outdoor meals from breakfast to dinner, where visitors can view animals, sunrises and sunsets as they enjoy international cuisine. Hotels and resorts offer game drives and safari walks for guests who can also enjoy some outdoor activities. The temperature and climate of the country is favorable to outdoor activities and nature walks. For those who visit the country in a large group, it is often advisable to hire transportation and guides who will ensure that you enjoy the reserves and parks to the maximum. The guides can be found at the camp sites and the hotels or resorts where you stay. As you tour the parks, take advantage of the serenely located Addo Elephant Park, which is home to more than five hundred elephants and buffaloes. This is in addition to the amazing flora (plant species) found in the park and all other surrounding national and private parks.
About the Author: Tim Ambler is an avid-world traveler and the founder of MightyPromos, a promotional marketing company that offers promotional bottle openers that can be customized with a printed logo or message.
*Photo credits: Davinci77 (for “The Union Building in Pretoria”, licensed under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license), Danie van der Merwe (for “Table Mountain”, licensed under the CC BY 3.0 license) and PZFUN (for “Drakensberg mountains”, licensed under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license).