About South Africa
The various population groups of South African culture have combined to create a society of diverse historical and cultural backgrounds, which has often been described as a fascinating ethnic mosaic. Our country has a lot to offer.From the Kalahari desert and Kruger National Park to a variety of modem cities, from wildlife to tribal life.
Best Time To Visit Cape Town: November - February. Summers (December - January) are hot and dry; winters (June - August) are cool and wet. "Secret season" (May - September) has fewer tourists and is greener and cooler.
WEATHER FORECAST www.weathersa.co.za
Lying between the Indian and Atlantic Oceans, Cape Town enjoys mild winters and pleasant summers. Summer temperatures in December to February range from around 15 to 27 degrees Celsius (60 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit), whilst in the winter months of June to August average temperatures are between 7 to 20 degrees Celsius (45 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit). Rainfall is moderate throughout the year and there are refreshing sea breezes which can sometimes turn a little bracing during the winter.
Most major credit cards are accepted as well as travelers cheques in major currencies. Master Card, VISA, Diners and American Express.
South African currency works on the decimal system 1 Rand equaling 100 cents. - Denomination of Rand notes R200, R100, R50, R20, R1O. Denomination of coins R5, R2, R1, .50, 20, 10, 5, 2, 1 cents.
We suggest utilising credit cards as much as possible to pay for services and facilities once here. There is an excellent network of ATM's throughout the country that are linked internationally. Some venues will accept US$ although the rate of exchange may not be controlled. Travellers cheques in SA Rand are advisable as these are then accepted locally at face value. Available in many countries.
SOUTH AFRICAN FOREIGN EXCHANGE
Travelers cheques and foreign currency notes of all major currencies can be exchanged at any commercial bank. American Express offices and most hotels have exchange facilities for guests.
Travelers must obtain the necessary permit from the South African Reserve Bank should they have more than R500 in cash in their possession on leaving the country. For more information or advice, telephone Customs and Excise.
Visitors are subject to clearance through customs. Information about what may or may not be brought into the country may be obtained from travel agents. Details of requirements for the temporary importation of exhibition goods are obtainable from the Department of Customs and Excise.
You will have to pay on items which are over the allowed limits. Duty is levied at 20%. You will normally have to do this before you, leave the customs hall. (see-duty-free allowances above).
VISITORS TO SOUTH AFRICA SHOULD HOLD:
- Valid return or onward tickets for travel.
- Sufficient means of support for the period.
- Valid entry documents for next destination.
- Valid passport and Visa as necessary.
Enquiries may be directed to:
South African Diplomatic Representatives abroad or to the Department of Home Affairs in Pretoria at Civitas Building, Struben Street, (Private Bag Xl 14, 0001, Pretoria: Tel + 12 314 911, Fax + 12 314 8516).
Visas are issued free of charge. Visitors who intend traveling to South Africa's neighbouring countries and back to South Africa are advised to apply for multiple entry Visas.
Excellent regional and city maps are available from the Car Hire firm, Satour, the Automobile Association, from major book stores and airport kiosks.
South Africa uses the metric system.
Throughout the year, South African Standard Time is two hours ahead of Greenwich Mean (or Universal Standard) Time (GMT+2), one hour ahead of Central European Winter Time, and seven hours ahead of the USA's Eastern Standard Winter Time.
Generally, urban power systems are 220/230 volts AC at 50 cycles a second. Plugs are 5-amp 2-pin or 15amp 3- pin (round pins). Not all electric shavers will fit hotel and game-park plug points, visitors should seek advice about adaptors from a local electrical supplier. Generally the 110V video chargers work safely on the 220V supply. Television is on the PAL system.
South Africa is one of the few countries in the world where the Municipal tap water is palatable and perfectly safe to drink. Check if the tap water is suitable to drink at the more remote Lodges. Bottled water is readily available in shops, lodges and hotels. Water in streams and rivers could be polluted and Bilharzia is commonly found in rivers and streams on the northern and eastern regions of the country. Bilharzia is not present in the sea or in swimming pools.