South Africa – Travel Information
South Africa is a diverse country at the tip of Africa – the world’s second largest and most populous continent. Bordered by Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique and Swaziland, South Africa has a population of around 48 million and has 11 official languages.
With a long coastline that stretches more than 2,500 kilometres across two oceans, and a climate that ranges from desert to subtropical, South Africa is truly a unique place to visit.
The country has emerged from a turbulent past, and since the first democratic elections in 1994, unity is sought through diversity in a place where all people are now equal.
BEST TIME TO VISIT
Generally mild climatic conditions make South Africa a perfect year-round destination.
South Africa is serviced by many of the world’s major airlines with direct flights to Europe, America and the Middle East on a daily basis. South Africa’s three main gateway airports are:
Oliver Tambo International Airport previously known as Johannesburg International Airport
Cape Town International Airport
Durban International Airport
The South African Police can be reached at any time on 10 111.
Emergency from a landline – 107. From a mobile – 112
Fire department ( Cape Town ) 021 535 1100
Table Mountain National Park – Emergencies – 0861 106417
Visitor safety and support programme – 021 487 6552
Cape Town Tourism – 021 487 6800
1 Jan: New Year’s Day
21st March: Human Rights Day
-: Good Friday
-: Easter Monday
27th April: Freedom Day
1st May: Workers Day
16th June: Youth Day
9th August: National Women’s Day
24th September: Heritage Day
16th December: Day of Reconciliation
25th December: Christmas Day
26th December: Day of Goodwill
South Africa has both private and public hospitals in most areas and many well qualified general practitioners to help with most medical matters.
Malaria is found only in some parts of the Lowveld of Mpumalanga (including the Kruger National Park) and on the Maputaland coast of KwaZulu-Natal. It is advisable to take prophylactics before visiting these areas.
Although there are eleven official languages in South Africa, most people understand and speak English. English is spoken in the cities and all the road signs are in English.
South Africa is one of only 12 countries in the world with drinkable tap water. Our tap water quality is the third-best overall in the world. It is advisable though, to take bottled water with you when travelling to remote rural areas and the bush.