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World Cup Information

SOUTH AFRICA WORLD CUP INFORMATION

When to book flights to South Africa
Currently 2 airlines offer direct flights to South Africa from the US, Delta and South African Airways. Several European airlines fly direct to South Africa from London (BA and Virgin Atlantic), Amsterdam (KLM), Frankfurt (Lufthansa), and Paris (Air France).

You can also fly via the Middle East, through Dubai (Emirates); from Hong Kong (Cathay Pacific); Varig flies direct to South Africa from Brazil and Qantas flies from Sydney.

International flights are not scheduled more than a year in advance. If you get a package tour together then this will usually include a flight and that way you should be able to guarantee yourself a seat.

If you're really stuck getting a flight into South Africa, try flights to Windhoek in Namibia (via Frankfurt) or Gaborone in Botswana (via London), both of these cities are a bus ride away from either Cape Town or Johannesburg. You can also try flying in to Nairobi (Kenya) and catching a regional flight down from there on Kenya Airways or South African Airways.

South African Stadiums for the 2010 worldcup

Where Will the Matches Take Place?
The 2010 World Cup will play out in ten stadiums across South Africa (see map). Many are currently under construction in Cape Town, Durban, Johannesburg (2 stadiums), Mangaung/Bloemfontein, Nelson Mandela Bay/Port Elizabeth, ]Nelspruit, Polokwane, Rustenburg, and Tshwane/Pretoria.

Look for accommodation and flights into Johannesburg if you want to see matches in Johannesburg, Rustenburg, Pretoria and Nelspruit. These are all situated in the north of South Africa and the stadiums won't be more than a 3 hour drive away. Polokwane (Pietersburg) is about 5 hours from Johannesburg and is considered one of the safest towns in South Africa.

Bloemfontein is in the middle of the country and will host several matches in the Free State Stadium. Bloemfontein is a small city of approximately 370,000 people and the judicial capital of South Africa.

Durban lies on the warm Indian Ocean coast, it has fantastic beaches, excellent surfing, lots of culture and a good nightlife.

Cape Town, one of the world's most beautiful cities is on the southern tip of the country where the Atlantic and Indian oceans meet.

Port Elizabeth lies in between Cape Town and Durban on the coast in a region called the Eastern Cape. This is a popular tourist area and there are lots of domestic flights available. A perfect place from which to explore the popular Garden Route.

Getting Around to Matches
South Africa has a comprehensive domestic airline industry and all the towns and cities that will host World Cup matches have airports close by. South Africa's domestic carriers include:

  • South African Express offers 13 South African domestic flights.
  • Airlink offers mainly domestic flights within South Africa but is starting to branch out regionally as well.
  • Kulula is a low-cost airline operating domestically as well as regionally. Routes include Cape Town, Durban, George, Harare and Lusaka.
  • Mango Airlines launched in December 2006 and flies to several destinations within South Africa including Johannesburg, Cape Town, Pretoria and Bloemfontein.
  • Venture Air offers scheduled domestic destinations and charter services. Scheduled flights include Kruger, Cape Town, Plettenberg, Johannesburg and more.
  • 1Time offers low-cost flights within South Africa and to Zanzibar.

Taxis, coaches (buses), and regular buses will be plying the routes from hotels to stadiums. Thousands of extra vehicles will be in place during the event.

Activities in South Africa
Adventure Safaris,Scuba Diving,Mountain Climbing,Surfing

Posted by maasai 03:36 Archived in South Africa Comments (0)

South Africa Culture

South African Culture

Zulu BoysPerhaps one of the most outstanding things about South African culture is that it is not one single culture, but rather a range of different cultures representing every level of a very stratified community. Hybrid mixtures of these different cultures also exist, making South Africa one of the most culturally diverse countries in the world.

There are a number of cultural attractions in South Africa which are definitely worth visiting. Take, for instance, one of the most famous ones – that of Robben Island wherein Nelson Mandela, the first black president of the country, was once imprisoned for his efforts to free his people from oppression.

In KwaZulu Natal you will find that the Zulu culture is still very much alive in the descendents of the ancient Zulu king Shaka at Shakaland. Here tribal dance and song is performed with vigor and you can explore the mysterious, ritualistic world of the Sangoma with much pomp and ceremony.

In the Eastern Cape you’ll discover the remains of Saartjie Baartman – a san woman who suffered terrible humiliation at the hands of self-righteous Europeans and who has become a symbol of female empowerment and tribal rights recognition some 200 years after her death. A visit to the Drakensberg Mountains will make you privy to some of the oldest rock art in the country, while a trip to the many art galleries and theaters in most of the cities and towns is an excellent way to enjoy South African art and drama.

Music is another sphere of South African culture which exemplifies the range and diversity of this country’s culture. Classical music, although European in nature, is enjoyed regularly at al fresco concerts across the country amidst the beauty of large botanical gardens. Jazz is a favorite in the townships and it has developed and diversified into three distinctive genres: Township Jazz, Black Jazz, and Marabi. Kwaito is another favorite. Rock and pop are also popular and a number of South African musicians have created sounds which simply cannot be confined to a particular music group, but which are very South African in nature. So come and enjoy a hands-on introduction to South Africa’s rainbow of culture!71577ithala_game_reserve.jpg

Posted by maasai 03:34 Comments (0)

South Africa Attractions

South Africa Attractions

South Africa Attractions and Destinations / South Africa is one of the most diverse and enchanting countries in the world. Exotic combinations of landscapes, people, history and culture offer the traveller a unique and inspiring experience. South Africa is a heady mix of third and first world cultures - along with the best and least crowded beaches in the world. Throw in wildlife parks such as the Kruger National Park, Eight World Heritage Sites, beautiful natural scenery, a great infrastructure and a stable post-apartheid environment and you have a great destination waiting to happen.

The Garden Route
Kirstenbosch Botanical GardenThe Garden Route is a coastal corridor on the western coast of South Africa, where ancient forests, rivers, wetlands, dunes, stretches of beach, lakes, mountain scenery and indigenous fynbos all merge to form a landscape of restorative beauty.

This is a strip of land like no other in the world in terms of beauty, natural attractions and unique flora and fauna - hence its name. Three of South Africa’s top hikes take place here - the Otter Trail and the Tsitsikama and Dolphin trails and man’s footprint has made little impact on the rugged and sometimes inaccessible coastline. The Garden Route is a paradise for eco-lovers, bird watchers and solitude seekers and one of the most beautiful parts of the Western Cape. It lies sandwiched between the Outeniqua Mountains and the Indian Ocean and is on every tourist’s itinerary. The Garden Route is a popular holiday destination during summer and a tranquil hideaway during the winter months - both seasons are equally beautiful and attractive due to the largely Mediterranean climate of the Garden Route.

The second largest of South Africa’s nine provinces, the diverse Eastern Cape is situated between the Western Cape and KwaZulu Natal, and bordered by the Orange River and Drakensberg Mountains.

Eastern Cape Attractions
The Eastern Cape is an interesting place to visit. Some of the country's most powerful political figures, like Steve Biko and Nelson Mandela, were born here and the capital city, Port Elizabeth, was a crucial center of the anti-apartheid movement. A number of very good tour operators offer excellent township tours that provide an insight into Port Elizabeth's role in South African history, as well as an introduction into traditional Xhosa rites and ceremonies.

Mpumalanga
Mpumalanga Highlands Mpumalanga is one of South Africa's top tourist destinations. Know as "Paradise Country", few regions in the world can match the extraordinary beauty of the Lowveld and escarpment. Mpumalanga covers nearly 80 000 km² from rolling highlands to the lofty escarpment and the lush wetlands. The Mpumalanga Tourism Authority has created seven regions with specially marked routes that invite the visitor to the spectacular Mpumalanga province on an unforgettable journey of the seven regions of Mpumalanga and the "must-see" attractions.

KwaZulu Natal is a world in one province: to the North of Durban you will find the best of African game reserves and pristine beaches, to the West lie the majestic Drakensberg Mountains and temperate Midlands while to the South there await superb golf courses, fishing spots and miles of subtropical coastline.

KwaZulu Natal
Known as the Kingdom of the Zulu, KwaZulu Natal is a melting pot of African, European and Indian cultures. This province boasts two World Heritage Sites, the Greater St Lucia Wetland Park and the majestic Ukhahlamba-Drakensberg Park. KwaZulu Natal offers superb beaches, sunny weather, game reserves, rolling green hills, numerous sugar cane plantations and relics of the great battles in South African history. There are 8 distinct regions and numerous 'must-see' attractions.

Zulu BoysEmbraced by several of South Africa’s provinces and sharing a border with the mountain Kingdom of Lesotho, the Free State lies in the heart of the country, between the Vaal River in the north and the Orange River in the south.

Free State
The Free State is a rural province of wide horizons and blue skies, with farmland, mountains, goldfields and widely dispersed towns. This tranquil land of the windmill is famous for its warm South African hospitality and a mix of culture which is clearly evident in street names, public buildings, monuments and museums. Dressed sandstone buildings abound the highlands, while beautifully decorated Sotho houses dot the grasslands. Some of South Africa's most valued San (Bushman) rock art is found in the Free State.

The Free State is divided into 5 distinct regions and offers many 'must-see' attractions.

Northern Cape
Northern Cape South AfricaThe Northern Cape boasts a colourful history and a variety of cultural tourist attractions and is particularly well known for its incredible annual floral display that takes place in Namaqualand. An utterly beautiful coastline and a number of unique national parks offer the tourist a very different experience of South Africa.

Mining has always defined the history in this part of South Africa and, when diamonds were discovered in Kimberley, unprecedented growth took place in the province. The last remaining true San (Bushman) people live in the Kalahari area of the Northern Cape. The whole area, especially along the Orange and Vaal Rivers, is rich in San rock engravings. The province is also rich in fossils. The Northern Cape is divided into five distinct regions and offers many 'must-see' attractions.

Limpopo
Limpopo is the northern most province in South Africa, bordering onto Moçambique, Zimbabwe and Botswana. Limpopo offers a mosaic of superb scenic landscape, a fascinating cultural heritage, an abundance of wildlife species and many nature based tourism opportunities.

Limpopo is a land of legends and myths and of ancient civilizations ... Those in search of history will find many places of archaeological significance that yielded relics dating back millions of years.

Western Cape
Cape Town's Attractions are plentiful and varied. The Western Cape is one of South Africa's premier tourism destinations and for good reason.

The Cape province is renowned for the world-famous landmark Table Mountain, its vast Cape Winelands and the most exquisite coastline.

Cape Town
Cape TownWith its majestic Table Mountain backdrop, Cape Town is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. A harmonious blend of architectural styles reflects the tastes of dictates of the past as well as today's more functional requirements. Between the high-rise office blocks, Edwardian and Victorian buildings have been meticulously preserved, and many outstanding examples of Cape Dutch architecture are found. Narrow, cobble stone streets and the strongly Islamic ambiance of the Bo-Kaap enhance the cosmopolitan ambiance of the city.

Cape Town shopping options invite you to endlessly browse. Elegant malls such as the Victoria Wharf at the V&A Waterfront, antique shops, craft markets, flea markets and art galleries abound. Specialist boutiques offer an enticing array of unusual items not readily obtainable elsewhere. Gourmets and lovers of fine wines have a treat in store, with the Constantia Winelands producing some of the finest wines worldwide.

Posted by maasai 03:29 Archived in South Africa Tagged tourist_sites Comments (0)

South Africa Attractions

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The Royal House of Swazi

Swaziland - independent since 1968 - is one of the only three monarchies left in Africa. Led by His Majesty, King Mswati III, the nation is steeped in tradition and committed to safeguarding its culture, social and natural heritage for future generations.
Traditional Ceremonies and Festivals in The Kingdom of Swaziland

  • Ncwala - Festival of the First Fruits - Traditional ceremonies are an integral part of Swazi life, despite the advent of modernization. The most important of these is the sacred Ncwala or Festival of the First Fruits. This is essentially a Kingship ceremony, held to renew the strength of the King and the Swazi Nation for the coming year. Ncwala is held in December/January of each year.
  • Umhlanga - The Reed Dance - Another major ceremony is Umhlanga or the Reed Dance which is held at the end of August or early September. The Reed Dance ceremony is for unmarried maidens to pay homage to the King and Queen Mother. The Maidens set out to collect reeds from selected areas which are then used to repair the Queen Mother’s home. (Because of abuse of pictures of the bare breasted Swazi maidens, cameras are not allowed at the Reed Dance and Festival of the First Fruits cermonies anymore.)

Fishing in South Africa

Blessed with a coastline almost 3 000 kilometres long, and numerous dams, lakes, rivers and streams, South Africa has plenty to offer the fishing enthusiast. From game fish in two oceans to trout in mountain streams, there is something to challenge and entertain everyone.

Many of South Africa's prime fishing spots offer not only good fishing, but also include some of the most beautiful places in a country blessed by Mother Nature.
Deep sea charters

Deep sea charters are available from ports along the coastline, which is shared by both the Indian and Atlantic Oceans, as well as the cold Benguela and warm Agulhas currents, bringing with them a wide variety of species.

Big fish that one will encounter at sea include barracuda, sailfish and tuna. Take note that permits are required for ocean fishing.
Mountains and dams

The gentle art of fly fishing is popular in South Africa, with three areas especially recognised for their bountiful offerings: the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands, Mpumulanga province, and the Eastern Cape. All three regions boast sizeable mountain ranges; it is in their mountain streams that trout flourish.

Some of these areas can be accessed only with 4x4 vehicles. The up-side of this is that they retain their natural beauty, being somewhat isolated.

For those that find fishing in rivers or off river banks too difficult, there are plenty of well-stocked dams to offer an enjoyable challenge.

Both brown and rainbow trout are to be found, though seldom together.

The South African trout season starts in September and finishes at the end of May. The best times for fly-fishing are in September and October, and then in April and May. However, many of the country's dams and lakes have no closed season.
Bass and carp

For some, bass fishing is the way to go. The bass is an intelligent and thus challenging fish, while being hardy too. This makes it a very adaptable fish, to be found far and wide, and partial to a wide variety of bait.

Carp fishing also has its supporters. Like bass, carp were originally imported into South Africa, and offer an excellent challenge. They also grow to some pretty amazing sizes.

Catch and release is encouraged for both bass and carp fishing.

Posted by maasai 13:25 Archived in South Africa Tagged tourist_sites Comments (0)

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