Many African Americans dream of planting their feet on the soil of the Mother Land --- Africa! And many choose to go all the way, and head to the southernmost section of the continent to visit South Africa --- "The Rainbow Nation."
South Africa is bordered to the north by Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe and Mozambique, and also wraps itself around the independent countries of Lesotho
The country boasts not one but 3 capitals: Cape Town, which is also called
"The Mother City," is the legislative capital. Pretoria is the administrative capital.
And Bloemfontein is the judicial capital.
We Africans in America celebrated from thousands of miles away when in 1994South Africa's apartheid policies were overthrown. Today, South Africa's political system is enshrined in a wide scope of protected human rights.
Since the demise of apartheid, travel by tourists from all over the world has surged. Tourism is now one of the country's largest revenue sectors. The country is also strong in the categories of adventure, sport, nature and wildlife travel, and is a pioneer and global leader in responsible tourism.
Almost 80% of South Africa’s population is Christian. Other major religious groups include Hindus, Muslims, Jews and Buddhists. The Constitution of South Africa guarantees freedom of worship.
South Africa has a temperate climate and is known for its long sunny days, hence another nickname: 'Sunny South Africa'. However, seasons are quite the reverse of ours in the United States. Winter is from May to August; spring is from September to October; summer is from November to February and autumn is from March to April.
Every country in the world displays some natural and topographical diversity, but South Africa, stretching from the hippos in the Limpopo River to the penguins waddling on the Cape make South Africa exceptional.The country boasts desert lands in Kalahari, Namakwa's springtime symphony of wildflowers, the iconic Table Mountain and Cape Point, to Kruger National Park, home of over 13,000 elephants. Another wildlife must see is KwaZulu-Natal's iSimangaliso Wetland Park, which has five distinct ecosystems, attracting wildlife from zebras to dolphins.
Cape Town's beautiful beaches
The beautiful beaches in Cape Town contribute to the Mother City's worldwide acclaim. From the trendy shores of Clifton, known as the playground for sun worshippers, to Camps Bay, to the warmer swimming waters of False Bay - if you love surf and sand, Cape Town will have a beach that's just right for you.
A colony of African penguins has made a home for itself at Boulders Beach in Simon's Town.
The Rainbow Nation!
Cape Town International Jazz Festival
The Cape Town International Jazz Festival is a musical extravaganza looked forward to all year. It showcases international and local jazz talent and attracts tens of thousands to this lovely coastal city.
Dozens of world-renowned jazz and jazz-related musicians and groups gather under the Cape Town International Jazz Festival's banner to perform on 5 different stages. Previous festival headliners have included award-winning South African vocalist Abigail Kubeka, America's Al Foster Quartet, Jonathan Butler and the country's beloved trumpet legend Hugh Masekela. The Cape Town International Jazz Festival is held in March each year.
If you're interested in another kind of wildlife, hit the nightclubs on
Cape Town's jumping Long St or sample African homebrew in a township shebeen, which is what they call an unlicensed bar. Dine on fresh seafood from the Atlantic and Indian Ocean. Eat curry dishes in Durban's Indian Area and go for a braai (barbecue) in the wilderness - accompanied by a bottle of pinotage produced by the oldest wine industry outside Europe.
How people of color celebrate the holidays - all over the world!
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Africa's pulsating heartbeat is felt in Johannesburg --- the 'City of Gold' with its endless opportunities for shopping, entertainment, freedom tours and eating out. Visit Robben Island, which Nelson Mandela helped transform from an institute of brutality into a symbol of the triumph of the human spirit over enormous hardship.
Go to Soweto --- South Africa's largest and most famous township, which was the epicenter of anti-apartheid activity. Visit Freedom Struggle sites and eat at a shebeen or township restaurant.
Johannesburg's International Airport, now known as OR Tambo International Airport (JNB), and Cape Town International (CPT) are the major airport hubs in Southern Africa. From the U.S. -- There are two direct flights to South Africa, departing from New York City, via South African Airways, and Delta offers nonstop service out of Atlanta. If you wish to add a touch of Europe to your travel, consider travel via British Airways or Virgin, which offer connecting flights out of London.
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