Hole in the Wall, Eastern CapeSouth African Tourism
South Africa's 9 Provinces
From the breathtaking scenery of Mpumalanga to the bustling city life of Gauteng, South Africa's provinces promise a range of experiences that you can't find anywhere else on earth. Explore South Africa's nine provices and discover Eastern Cape, Free State, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Northern Cape, North West and Western Cape.
Addo Elephant National Park, Eastern CapeSouth African Tourism
The Eastern Cape
South Africa’s ‘wild’ province features expanses of untouched beach, bush and forest. The Eastern Cape was Nelson Mandela’s home province, and is an area with some enticing attractions – among them the Addo Elephant National Park, with the densest elephant population in the world; the dramatic Wild Coast and of course, Mandela’s home at Qunu.
Sani Pass, Kwazulu NatalSouth African Tourism
South Africa’s third-smallest province has a wealth of scenic and cultural attractions including the country’s most popular beaches lying to the south and north of Durban. Add to that its bushveld reserves to the north, historic battlefields and the dramatic Drakensberg mountains, and you can see why it’s popular with tourists.
Cape Point, Western CapeSouth African Tourism
The scenic splendour of the Western Cape has long been a drawcard in South Africa. This is where you’ll find the Cape Winelands and a beautiful stretch of coastline. Most visitors list Table Mountain, Robben Island (where the late Nelson Mandela was incarcerated) and a visit to the Cape of Good Hope, at the tip of the Cape Peninsula, as priorities.
Freedom Park, GautengSouth African Tourism
Stretching all the way from Pretoria in the north to Vereeniging in the south, Gauteng (Sotho for place of gold, although the ‘gaut’ is also thought to originate from the Dutch ‘goud’ for gold) was created by the ANC in 1994 after the country’s first all-race elections, uniting six regions, including part of the old Transvaal province, into what might be the smallest South African province, but serves as the gateway into Africa.
Mpumalanga means ‘the land of the rising sun’ in the local siSwati and Zulu languages, a name it derives from lying on the eastern border of the country. It is most famous for being the southern gateway to the country’s premier wildlife reserve, the Kruger National Park.
Golden Gate, Free StateSouth African Tourism
The Free State
The Free State's appeal lies in its scenic beauty, rural tranquillity and natural attractions. Some say that the eastern part of the province is the most beautiful, with its sandstone rock formations and rolling grassland. It also lies in the heart of South Africa as it borders six of the country’s nine provinces, as well as the kingdom of Lesotho.
The Northern Cape
The Northern Cape is the largest of South Africa’s provinces but has the smallest population, making it one of the more remote areas of the country. Among its attractions are its vast open spaces, unique vegetation – including the beautiful spring flower spectacle that transforms the semi-desert landscape – and the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park, which is famous for its lions.
Hartbeespoort, North WestSouth African Tourism
The North West
North West province features premier wildlife destinations, among them the Pilanesberg and the Madikwe game reserves. Parts of two UNESCO World Heritage Sites (the Vredefort Dome and the Taung Fossil Site, part of the Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site) are also found here..
Limpopo has become a sought-after tourist destination for its big game, exceptional birding, untamed bush landscapes and an ancient African kingdom, the centre of which was located at Mapungubwe National Park. It is also the northern gateway to the Kruger National Park.