Thursday, July 28, 2011

I live in… South Africa {part 1}

Hi my blogging friends, a few days ago someone asked me to post something about where I live which is South Africa and everything there is to know about our country. Well, I must admit, I’ve heard some strange things about our country so many times and it’s pretty funny to know what people think South-Africa looks like :).  It’s a normal country (well sort of).
Cape Town, South Africa at night, gorgeous city! {via here}

South Africa is located at the southern tip of Africa, divided into 9 provinces, with 2798 kilometres (1739 miles) of coastline on the South Atlantic and Indian Oceans.  What makes South Africa unique from any other country in the world is that we have 4 capitals which is Pretoria (executive capital and where I live), Cape Town (legislative capital), Bloemfontein (judicial capital) and Johannesburg (financial capital and also the largest). South Africa is the 25th-largest country in the world and is about the size of Colombia. 
South Africa {via here}

Let's start of with clarifying a few things about South Africa, most people get this wrong:
1.   There is no wild animals walking around our neighbourhoods… but we can find lions and elephants in our zoos, wild reserves & nature reserves (Kruger National Park - is the main or most well known one) where you can go on a Safari. Wild animals is easy to find, if you know where to look, but they won’t attack you at your home or when walking in the streets, I promise.  Our cities and towns look like any other in the world with streets, buildings & houses. Wild animals is so easy to find, because South-Africa is known for it’s wildlife and we have loads of tourist destinations for that sort of thing. 
2.  Not all of the people living in South-Africa is black :) In fact: About 79.5% of the South African population is of black African ancestry, divided among a variety of ethnic groups speaking different Bantu languages, 9 of which have official status. About a quarter of the population is unemployed and lives on less that US $1.25 a day.… 
3.  We are not all walking around with guns, we are not that violent, promise! :) But South Africa is also the only African country to have successfully developed nuclear weapons. Six nuclear devices were completed between 1980 and 1990 but South Africa became the first country with nuclear capability to voluntarily renounce and dismantle its programme and in the process signed the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty in 1991. Kind of cool huh? :)
Pretoria, South Africa (where I live) Gorgeous with all the Jacaranda (the purple blossom) trees in the streets and well known as the Jacaranda City of South Africa. {via here}

South Africa is multi-ethnic and has diverse cultures and languages. 11 Official languages to be exact are recognised. Two of these are of European origin: Afrikaans (which is my home language) it originated mainly from Dutch that is spoken by the majority of white and coloured South Africans, and South African English. English is commonly used in public and commercial life, it is only the fifth most spoken home language.
Union Building in Pretoria, beautiful building and amazing garden, we’ve had a few picnics on the grass in front of the building. {via here}

As you’ve probably noticed I’ve done a little research before I started writing this post and I was surprised at how interesting I found it! I truly live in a beautiful country with loads of interesting history.  Egypt and South Africa alone made me want to become an archaeologist when I was a little girl (I know I’m so weird for not wanting to be a princess but instead wanting to become a ground-digging, Indiana Jones girl when I was little). So that brings me to another fact: Did you know that South Africa contains some of the oldest archaeological sites in the world? Extensive fossil remains suggested that various australopithecines (such a big word, I’m so clever! It’s species similar to humans, but with a brain size not much larger than modern apes) existed in South Africa from about three million years ago!
Clifton Bay and Beach_ Cape Town_ South Africa
Cape Town {via here}
tumblr_lic3vsqKIV1qzkp97o1_400There's so many wonderful things to say about South Africa that  I feel like I'm bombarding you with too much information.  So the last few facts I HAVE to mention is:  South Africa is a 1st and 3rd world country because of our mixed economy.  We are a middle-income country with an abundant supply of recourses, well-developed financial, legal, communication, energy and transport sectors and a stock exchange that ranks among the top twenty in the world. And it was the South African cardiac surgeon, Christiaan Barnard who was the first person in the world to perform a human-to-human heart transplant in December 1967.

Photo on the left is the Knysna Lagoon in South Africa, with one of our beautiful sunsets. {via here}

This post is only part one of “where I live”, the next one I’ll post some more things about where I grew up, where I live now and my favourite places in South Africa. (And I’ll use my own photos this time). There’s still so many places I haven’t been in our Country, this post made me realise how many wonderful things there is in our gorgeous Country that I haven’t seen or experienced yet and that it’s about time I do something about it. I hope you all enjoyed this post, and will check back soon for the next one!

Oh, and if anyone was wondering, we drive on the left side of the road… ;)

Also check out my sister Stephanie's blog ---> I'm featured there today! ;)


Stephanie said...

aaaagh i miss SA!

you are so lucky in SA - the weather is great & it is pretty there!

love YA!! xx

Anonymous said...

Omg,even if i lived close to the african continent(sicily) i never knew how wonderful south africa is!
Thanks for "opening my mind" i really thought it was all as let us see.Poverty,hunger,civil war..
It's amazing really,i wish i could visit it!

Janine van Staden said...

Our country truly is amazing! It would be wonderful if you could visit some day! :) South Africa at least, Other part of Africa, I should mention this though, is full of poverty, hunger and civil war, the southern part, is pretty amazing, wonderful and absolutely gorgeous! :)