South Africa
              “home of the Big Five”

If you want to learn English and enjoy lots of sunshine, nature and beaches, South Africa is the place for you. Experience the Big Five – lion, elephant, rhino, leopard and buffalo – at the Kruger Park, the worlds largest game reserve. A safari here will guarantee you an experience that will be over and above the ordinary.
Cape Town is considered one of the most beautiful cities in the world. In the surroundings of Cape Town the Table Mountain rises majestically and close in the region in a warm and splendid climate.
The many national parks have a rich fauna and flora and are popular tourist attractions not to be missed. The Krüger Park is the largest of them and there exist all kinds of animals, from hummingbirds to elephants.
South Africa’s wine district, today fairly well known, is situated to the west, just north of Cape Town. Further north you will find the gold mines. It was here that the trouble between the Englishmen and the Boers started.
At the coast outside Cape Town the Atlantic Ocean meets the Indian Ocean. A bit farther east along the Garden Route lies Durban with its white beaches and waters that make surfers from all over the world grow lyrical. A distance into the mainland lies Johannesburg on almost 2.000 meters’ altitude above sea level, and a couple of great stone's throws north, Pretoria, the capital, is situated. South Africa’s counterpart to Las Vegas in the USA – Sun City - is not very far from there, to the west.




South African High School

School starts in January in South Africa. But you can choose to follow the European school year, i.e. begin your high school year during the fall semester and finish at the beginning of the summer the following year. You will study four semesters.
As an exchange student you will be placed in an English and/or Afrikaans speaking school. In most South African schools it is mandatory to wear a school uniform.
In South Africa studies at high school level are called “Standards” and they maintain a high academic level. South African students study five years of high school, Standards 6-10. Standard 10, which is the graduate year, is also called “Matric”. If you choose to study in South Africa, you will take Standard 8, 9 or 10.
School start: January (But you can choose to follow the European school year)



South African Spare Time Activities

Many spare time activities in South Africa are tied to the school and its different activities. Team sports and other sports are often organized by the management of the school. Cricket, rugby and soccer are popular sports.
The climate makes it ideal to practise track and field, swimming and other sports that are not always so much fun to train when it is raining and only a few degrees outside. In addition to sheer sport activities you can also choose to improve your skills in computer science, chess, speech, drama and many other subjects.
Naturally, there is also a wide range of activities to keep yourself busy outside the school’s domain. Sailing, surfing and other water sports are very popular, as are tennis and golf. The golf courses are of a very high international class and there are tennis courts in most residential areas. Local clubs arrange competitions.
You and your new-made friends may just feel like “hanging out” and glide around on inlines or go for a ride on a board. And in a country where the sunshine is brilliant it is excellent to play a game of street basket.
South Africa is also a splendid country for walking. Varied and pretty grounds make it pleasant and not particularly tiring. The heat may possibly be somewhat arduous. Otherwise the climate and nature of South Africa stand in a class of their own.



South African Family Life

Most STS students who choose to go to high school in South Africa are placed in and around Cape Town as well as along the south coast towards Durban.
Magnificent surroundings make life outdoors a central part for every South African. Much time is spent in the country for instance walking, fishing and doing different kinds of sports. A so-called brai, a barbecue, is something you most definitely will take part in. Friends and acquaintances of your host family gather to socialise and enjoy good foods together.



Basic Facts South Africa

Location: The very southern tip of the African continent
Area: 1.223.404 square kilometers
Population: Appr. 37,8 million
Capitals: Cape Town (Parliament), Pretoria (Administration)
Language: English and Afrikaans + 9 other official languages
National Holiday: April 27
President: Thabo Mbeki
Celebrities: Nelson Mandela and Bishop Desmond Tutu

South Africa is an independent country and member of the British Commonwealth.
It was Vasco de Gama who first rounded the Cape of Good Hope, and it was he who founded the Cape in 1498. Since then many ships have been wrecked at the myth-surrounded cape. Eventually the Dutch decided to build a city where so many people were shipwrecked. Today the city is called Cape Town and is considered one of the most beautiful cities in the world.





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