South Africa
in Southern Africa
Africa

Location Summary
Currency and Currency Code:
Rand - ZAR
Spoken languages:
Zulu, Xhosa, Afrikaans, English, Tswana, Southern Sotho, Tsonga, Swati, Venda, South Ndebele
Local electricity:
230 V - 50 Hz (plugs: C, M, N)
Mobile phone / cellular frequencies (MHz):
900 MHz, 1800 MHz, 3G, 4G
ISO 2-Letter code:
ZA
Internet top level domain:
.za
Country phone prefix:
+27
Local Time (capital):
Timezone:
UTC/GMT offset: hours
Current travel safety evaluation for South Africa in Southern Africa

Safety Score: 2,6 of 5.0 based on data from 9 authorites. Meaning we advice caution when travelling to South Africa.

Travel warnings are updated daily. Source: Travel Warning South Africa. Last Update: 2019-05-12 07:23:51

Explore South Africa

South Africa with its capital Pretoria is located in Africa (Southern Africa, at the southern tip of the continent of Africa). It covers some 1,219,091 square kilometers (slightly less than twice the size of Texas) with a population of 54,841,600. Zulu, Xhosa, Afrikaans, English, Tswana, Southern Sotho, Tsonga, Swati, Venda and South Ndebele are the languages spoken by people in South Africa (consider regional differences). Botswana, Lesotho, Mozambique, Namibia, Swaziland and Zimbabwe are bordering countries.

South Africa is located at the southern tip of Africa. The Orange River on the border to Namibia is a popular destination for rafting tours. Several tour operators launch 4-6 day trips in blow-up boats from Vioolsdrif with camping under the stars. South Africa has sites spread along its coast that are perhaps better known for sharks and other large marine life, but also have a wide range of endemic smaller fish and invertebrates. The coastal sites range from tropical coral reefs in the north of KwaZulu-Natal, where the fish are typical Indo-pacific tropical species, and very colourful, to cool temperate rocky reefs on the West Coast, where the fish life is relatively dull, but the invertebrates provide the colour.

Impressions from the South African capital

Have a look at our dedicated photo collection to get a view of what New Delhi is like. We have selected more pictures from New Delhi on our dedicated gallery page.

Popular Destinations in South Africa

Administrative regions of South Africa

About the country

Website: South Africa Tourism

P.O. Box X 02
Southbroom 4277
South Africa

Phone: +27 39 316 6999
Fax: +27 39 316 6999
Mail: southbroom@thehibiscuscoast.co.za

The terrain is vast interior plateau rimmed by rugged hills and narrow coastal plain. The average density of population is about 45 per km². The climate in South Africa can be described as mostly semiaridsubtropical along east coast, sunny days, cool nights. Possible natural disasters include prolonged droughts the volcano forming Marion Island in the Prince Edward Islands, which last erupted in 2004, is South Africa's only active volcano

To reach someone South Africa dial +27 prior to a number. The local cellular networks are operated on 900 MHz, 1800 MHz, 3G, 4G. Websites typically end with the top level domain ".za". If you want to bring electric appliances (e.g. battery chaarger), keep in min the local 230 V - 50 Hz (plugs: C, M, N). The sign for the locally used currency Rand is ZAR.

Two equal width horizontal bands of red (top) and blue separated by a central green band that splits into a horizontal Y, the arms of which end at the corners of the hoist side; the Y embraces a black isosceles triangle from which the arms are separated by narrow yellow bands; the red and blue bands are separated from the green band and its arms by narrow white stripes; the flag colors do not have any official symbolism, but the Y stands for the "convergence of diverse elements within South African society, taking the road ahead in unity"; black, yellow, and green are found on the flag of the African National Congress, while red, white, and blue are the colors in the flags of the Netherlands and the UK, whose settlers ruled South Africa during the colonial era.

Flag of South Africa

Dutch traders landed at the southern tip of modern day South Africa in 1652 and established a stopover point on the spice route between the Netherlands and the Far East, founding the city of Cape Town. After the British seized the Cape of Good Hope area in 1806, many of the Dutch settlers (Afrikaners, called "Boers" (farmers) by the British) trekked north to found their own republics, Transvaal and Orange Free State. The discovery of diamonds (1867) and gold (1886) spurred wealth and immigration and intensified the subjugation of the native inhabitants. The Afrikaners resisted British encroachments but were defeated in the Second South African War (1899-1902); however, the British and the Afrikaners, ruled together beginning in 1910 under the Union of South Africa, which became a republic in 1961 after a whites-only referendum. In 1948, the Afrikaner-dominated National Party was voted into power and instituted a policy of apartheid - the separate development of the races - which favored the white minority at the expense of the black majority. The African National Congress (ANC) led the opposition to apartheid and many top ANC leaders, such as Nelson MANDELA, spent decades in South Africa's prisons. Internal protests and insurgency, as well as boycotts by some Western nations and institutions, led to the regime's eventual willingness to negotiate a peaceful transition to majority rule. The first multi-racial elections in 1994 following the end of apartheid ushered in majority rule under an ANC-led government. South Africa has since struggled to address apartheid-era imbalances in decent housing, education, and health care. ANC infighting came to a head in 2008 when President Thabo MBEKI was recalled by Parliament, and Deputy President Kgalema MOTLANTHE, succeeded him as interim president. Jacob ZUMA became president after the ANC won general elections in 2009; he was reelected in 2014.

Geography

Area
Total (World Rank: 26) 1,219,090sq km
Land (World Rank: 25) 1,214,470sq km
Water (World Rank: 68) 4,620sq km
Forest (World Rank: 10) 69.20%
Comparative slightly less than twice the size of Texas
Note includes Prince Edward Islands (Marion Island and Prince Edward Island)
Coastline
2798
Landborder
5244
Elevation
Highest point (World Rank: 57) 3,408m
Agricultural land
Total (World Rank: 7) 79.40%
Arable (World Rank: 113) 9.90%
Permanent crops (World Rank: 162) 0.30%
Permanent pastures (World Rank: 10) 69.20%
Irrigated land (World Rank: 31) 16,700sq km
Map reference
Africa
Environment
Issues
  • - air pollution resulting in acid rain
  • - desertification
  • - growth in water usage outpacing supply
  • - lack of important arterial rivers or lakes requires extensive water conservation and control measures
  • - pollution of rivers from agricultural runoff and urban discharge
  • - soil erosion
Agreement party
  • - Antarctic Seals
  • - Antarctic Treaty
  • - Antarctic-Environmental Protocol
  • - Antarctic-Marine Living Resources
  • - Biodiversity
  • - Climate Change
  • - Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol
  • - Desertification
  • - Endangered Species
  • - Hazardous Wastes
  • - Law of the Sea
  • - Marine Dumping
  • - Marine Life Conservation
  • - Ozone Layer Protection
  • - Ship Pollution
  • - Wetlands
  • - Whaling
Hazzards
  • - prolonged droughts
  • - the volcano forming Marion Island in the Prince Edward Islands, which last erupted in 2004, is South Africa's only active volcano
Location
Southern Africa, at the southern tip of the continent of Africa
Climate
mostly semiarid; subtropical along east coast; sunny days, cool nights
Terrain
vast interior plateau rimmed by rugged hills and narrow coastal plain

People

Population
Total (World Rank: 25) 54,841,600
Deathrate (World Rank: 55) 0.94%
Birthrate (World Rank: 77) 2.02%
Growthrate (World Rank: 113) 0.99%
Migration rate (World Rank: 101) -0.09%
Fertility rate (World Rank: 90) 2.29%
Median age
Male (World Rank: 143) 26.90
Female (World Rank: 142) 27.30
Age structure
0 14 male (World Rank: 23) 7,768,960
0 14 female (World Rank: 22) 7,733,710
15 24 male (World Rank: 22) 4,776,100
15 24 female (World Rank: 20) 4,881,960
25 54 male (World Rank: 25) 11,589,100
25 54 female (World Rank: 25) 11,323,900
55 64 male (World Rank: 31) 1,694,900
55 64 female (World Rank: 31) 1,955,390
65 x male (World Rank: 35) 1,309,600
65 x female (World Rank: 31) 1,807,970
Health
Infant mortality rate (World Rank: 62) 3.10%
Life expectancy total (World Rank: 187) 64years
Life expectancy female (World Rank: 192) 65years
Life expectancy male (World Rank: 181) 62years
Physicians per 1000 (World Rank: 122) 0.77
Sanitation access total (World Rank: 143) 66.40%
Obesity adult (World Rank: 31) 28.30%
Drinking water access (World Rank: 123) 93.20%

Energy

Electricity
Production (World Rank: 20) 229,200,000,000kWh
Consumption (World Rank: 20) 207,700,000,000kWh
Export (World Rank: 11) 16,550,000,000kWh
Import (World Rank: 22) 10,560,000,000kWh
Source fossil (World Rank: 73) 86.70%
Source nuclear (World Rank: 129) 3.90%
Source renew (World Rank: 79) 7.10%
Crude oil
Production (World Rank: 87) 2,000bbl / day
Imports (World Rank: 23) 434,500bbl / day
Proved reserves (World Rank: 88) 15,000,000bbl
Refined products
Production (World Rank: 36) 431,000bbl / day
Consumption (World Rank: 31) 660,000bbl / day
Export (World Rank: 46) 78,110bbl / day
Import (World Rank: 39) 164,700bbl / day
Natural gas
Production (World Rank: 64) 1,100,000,000
Consumption (World Rank: 56) 8,660,000,000
Import (World Rank: 26) 0
Carbon footprint
482000000

Nation

Budget
Education (World Rank: 33) 6% of GDP
Military (World Rank: 109) 1% of GDP
Health (World Rank: 44) 9% of GDP
Surplus (World Rank: 125) -4% of GDP
National symbol
springbok
National colours
yellow
Adjective
South African
Noun
South African(s)
Background
Dutch traders landed at the southern tip of modern day South Africa in 1652 and established a stopover point on the spice route between the Netherlands and the Far East, founding the city of Cape Town. After the British seized the Cape of Good Hope area in 1806, many of the Dutch settlers (Afrikaners, called "Boers" (farmers) by the British) trekked north to found their own republics, Transvaal and Orange Free State. The discovery of diamonds (1867) and gold (1886) spurred wealth and immigration and intensified the subjugation of the native inhabitants. The Afrikaners resisted British encroachments but were defeated in the Second South African War (1899-1902); however, the British and the Afrikaners, ruled together beginning in 1910 under the Union of South Africa, which became a republic in 1961 after a whites-only referendum. In 1948, the Afrikaner-dominated National Party was voted into power and instituted a policy of apartheid - the separate development of the races - which favored the white minority at the expense of the black majority. The African National Congress (ANC) led the opposition to apartheid and many top ANC leaders, such as Nelson MANDELA, spent decades in South Africa's prisons. Internal protests and insurgency, as well as boycotts by some Western nations and institutions, led to the regime's eventual willingness to negotiate a peaceful transition to majority rule. The first multi-racial elections in 1994 following the end of apartheid ushered in majority rule under an ANC-led government. South Africa has since struggled to address apartheid-era imbalances in decent housing, education, and health care. ANC infighting came to a head in 2008 when President Thabo MBEKI was recalled by Parliament, and Deputy President Kgalema MOTLANTHE, succeeded him as interim president. Jacob ZUMA became president after the ANC won general elections in 2009; he was reelected in 2014.
Flag description
two equal width horizontal bands of red (top) and blue separated by a central green band that splits into a horizontal Y, the arms of which end at the corners of the hoist side; the Y embraces a black isosceles triangle from which the arms are separated by narrow yellow bands; the red and blue bands are separated from the green band and its arms by narrow white stripes; the flag colors do not have any official symbolism, but the Y stands for the "convergence of diverse elements within South African society, taking the road ahead in unity"; black, yellow, and green are found on the flag of the African National Congress, while red, white, and blue are the colors in the flags of the Netherlands and the UK, whose settlers ruled South Africa during the colonial era

Economy

Gdp
Purchasing power parity (World Rank: 30) 739,200,000,000USD
Real growth rate (World Rank: 184) 0.30%
Per capita purchasing power parity (World Rank: 115) 13,300USD
Source agriculture (World Rank: 165) 2.40%
Source industry (World Rank: 84) 29.00%
Source service (World Rank: 75) 68.60%
Labourforce
Total (World Rank: 29) 21,530,000
In poverty (World Rank: 121) 16.60%
Products
Industries
  • - automobile assembly
  • - chemicals
  • - chromium
  • - commercial ship repair
  • - fertilizer
  • - foodstuffs
  • - gold
  • - iron
  • - machinery
  • - metalworking
  • - mining
  • - platinum
  • - steel
  • - textiles
Agriculture
  • - beef
  • - corn
  • - dairy products
  • - fruits
  • - mutton
  • - poultry
  • - sugarcane
  • - vegetables
  • - wheat
  • - wool
Exports
  • - diamonds
  • - equipment
  • - gold
  • - machinery
  • - minerals
  • - other metals
  • - platinum
Imports
  • - chemicals
  • - equipment
  • - foodstuffs
  • - machinery
  • - petroleum products
  • - scientific instruments

Communication

Phone
Landline total (World Rank: 41) 3,562,980
Landline per 100 (World Rank: 145) 7.00
Mobile per 100 (World Rank: 38) 141.00
Assessment 0
Internet
Users (World Rank: 25) 29,322,400
Population (World Rank: 112) 54.00%

Transport

Air
Airports paved (World Rank: 15) 144.00
Airports unpaved (World Rank: 12) 422
Heliports (World Rank: 74) 1.00
Rail
Total length (World Rank: 13) 20,986
Road
Total length (World Rank: 10) 747,014
Paved length (World Rank: 19) 158,952
Unpaved length (World Rank: 4) 588,062