Geographical and historical attributes of South Africa
In this section we will attempt to offer a brief insight into the and her major cities. It is not meant to promote tourism, please review the "Explore SA" section for that information. The links to the right reveal information pertaining to the historical foundations of certain major cities. The origins of the largest city or "Egoli" (Johannesburg), the "Mother City" (Cape Town), the "Jacaranda City" (Pretoria), the "Windy City" (Port Elizabeth), Durban and the "Diamond City" (Kimberly" are discussed at length. Please feel free to peruse this litterature and offer any commentary on this subject.
South Africa is 5 times larger than Britain, or as large as Holland, Belgium, Italy, France and former West Germany combined.
It stretches from the Limpopo River in the north to the Cape Agulhas, nearly 2000 km (1240 miles) to the south, from Namaqualand along the barren western seabord 1500 km (932 miles) to subtropical KwaZulu-Natal and the humid Indian Ocean coast: a total land area of 1.3 million km2 (500,000 square miles).
South Africa lies between latitudes 22-35º south. The north-east of the country is in the tropics, north of the Tropic of Capricron. The country is divided into nine provinces; Gauteng, Northern Province, Mpumlalanga, NorthWest, Free State, KwaZulu-Natal, Eastern Cape, Western Cape and Northern Cape.
South Africa is a dry country, with an average annula rainfall of only 502 mm (20 inches) a year compared with a world average of 857 mm (34 inches). There are no important lakes, and the inland plateau is drained by only 2 river systems rising in the eastern mountains.
South Africa is a land of great diversity: variety and contrast are vividly evident in the mix of race and language, creed, colour and culture.
The diversity is there, too, in the nature of the land, in it's geological formations and regional climates; it's rich farmlands; it's bushveld scrub and arid deserts - each of the many different parts supporting it's own distinctive plant and animal life.
Truly: a world in one country!