SOUTH AFRICA, ALIVE WITH POSSIBILITIES AS INSPIRED BY NELSON MANDELA MONTH
The month of July is synonyms with the honouring of the former statesman and liberation hero Nelson Mandela through various activities that encompass his ideals. In celebrating his birthday individuals are encouraged to perform a positive act for 67 minutes by changing the lives of those less fortunate in society, this initiative is an attempt to foster the concept of Ubuntu by inspiring people to become more active citizen and everyday hero’s in their own lives and to promote the campaign to make “Everyday a Mandela Day”.
This icon and legend has helped shape the new South Africa into one of the most diverse and beautiful counties in the world.
In honour of the 10th anniversary of the Nelson Mandela day celebration: A list of ten places to see in South Africa inspired by Nelson Mandela Month that are not only amazing but also unique to South Africa.
Number One: THE BIG FIVE
This is not a place but a tribute to the Big Five some of the most majestic creatures to roam not only South Africa but the world. Some of these animals are now on the brink of extinction and have become endangered animals due to the high levels of poaching experienced. This unfortunate nature of events is an incentive to see these creatures in their natural state and help stop they demise by creating awareness of the importance having these creatures in the natural environment. By raising awareness of the plight of these creatures the hope is to deter the demanded for their horns and skeletons.
Number Two: KRUGER NATIONAL PARK
In paying homage to the Big Five. The Home of the Big Five is undeniably the Kruger National Park, with its unsurpassed beauty and natural landscape there is no better place in the world to see the Big Five than the Kruger National Park. We would highly recommend it.
Number Three: ROBBEN ISLAND
Robben Island: was once a place of misery and despair but is now a symbol of courage and is testament that no matter how dire the situation, one should always push forward and never loss hope. Robben Island is the prison that Nelson Mandela once spent 27years imprisoned and no visit to South Africa would be complete without a visit to Robben Island.
Number Four: CAPE TOWN
While in Cape Town, It only makes sense that one takes the opportunity to marvel at everything that the Mother City has to offer, with a huge array of experience and attractions the Mother City offers everything; from wine tasting, sharking diving, shopping, art, culture, world-class climbing, surfing, diving, hiking, horseback safaris, mountain biking and even some good old down time at the beach. The Mother City truly has it all and is one not to be missed.
Number Five: SOWETO
With so much diversity in South Africa, a perfect example of this is Soweto, which for many years has been home to South Africans from all corners of the country, making it a distinctive melting pot of the various cultures that exist in South Africa and typifies the ideals of the Rainbow nation. Vilakazi Street within Soweto provides a diverse experience within itself; it is the only street in the world that is home to two Nobel peace prize winners and provides an exceptional backdrop on the fight against Apartheid.
Number Six: PORT ELIZABETH (THE FRIENDLY CITY)
Friendly people; South Africans are a friendly bunch! This beautiful city boasts of a historical landmark called the Donkin Reserve which features a pyramid-shaped monument and a lighthouse dating back to 1861.Among other attractions to awe you in this city is the Sardinia Bay which is one of the delightful elusive coves that has managed to retain a certain amount of anonymity.
Number Seven: DURBAN
Sunshine country, Durban, and the beaches of the KwaZulu-Natal Coast average over 300 days of sunshine a year, even through the 'rainy season' of December to March. KwaZulu-Natal is a coastal province in South Africa that you have to visit at least once in your life: known for its beaches, mountains and astonishing savannas. Durban has many sights to visit, including the beautiful nature reserves and parks. There’s the Umgeni River Bird Park, an expansive bird centre with exotic species which offers educational programs and shows. There’s Paradise Valley, a beautiful place with a waterfall which offers hiking programs.
Number Eight: THE WILD COAST
The South African coastline stretches more than 2 500 kilometres and boasts some of the most spectacular beach landscapes in the world and has become one of the ecosystems that tourists wish to visit. To name a few; Jeffrey’s Bay, home of the best right hand surf-break in the world! International surfers flock to catch the legendary waves in this, a paradise of sunshine, aloes, dolphins, shells, perfect points & classic reefs. Coffee Bay presents a choice of some of the most fascinating cultural experiences and stunning natural attractions and Port St. Johns is a charming coastal town that attracts visitors from near and far. It is known as “The Jewel of the Wild Coast”.
Number Nine: GARDEN ROUTE
The Garden Route deserves a special mention, from Tsitsikamma to Knysna it is a beautiful journey filled with dolphins playing in the breakers, waterfalls, lagoons, forests, beaches and mountains that will unfolding right before your very eyes. From an array of activities that include: polo, sailing, hiking, bungee-jumping and even elephant rides this magnificent landscape combined with the warm subtropical climate makes the Garden Route one of most beautiful places in South Africa and is a must see for anybody visiting South Africa.
Number Ten: JOHANNESBURG
Egoli, Johannesburg: It is the financial hub of the country and represents the hustle and grind of a contemporary metropolitan city with skyscrapers filing up the sky. There are places like the Cradle of Humankind declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1999, Sterkfontein Caves and Maropeng Centre which is an exciting world-class exhibition depicting the development of humans and their ancestors over the past few million years.
There is also Apartheid Museum which is acknowledged as the pre-eminent museum in the world showing 20th century South Africa, at the heart of which is the apartheid story and illustrates the rise and fall of apartheid.
The month of July is one that many South Africans are cognisant of but more importantly illustrates the struggles that transcended a peaceful transition into democracy. This also provides a distinctive opportunity to people around the world to reflect and enjoy the beauty that is South Africa. South Africa is diverse in its offering, with a story at every turn. It gives you the opportunity to see the story first hand as a visit to South Africa is unparalleled and is like no other destination in the world.