At the far southern tip of the continent of Africa, one of the largest on Earth, lies one of the most amazing countries that you will find anywhere on Earth.

Five times larger than the UK. South Africa has such a breadth and depth to offers its visitors it’s difficult to know where to start…so how about with its history, which is characterised by racial and political violence, territorial conflict, wars of conquest, and inter-ethnic rivalry, the latter of which still exists to this day. The bush-men (Khoi and San) were the original inhabitants having had roots in the region for millennia with a nomadic lifestyle, and empathy to their environment similar in many ways to the aborigines of Australia. Most of the rest of the population trace their history to later immigration. Africans in South Africa are descendants of migrants from central Africa, who first entered southern Africa about 2,000 years ago. White South African were descendants of later European settlers, mainly from the Netherlands (the Boers), Germany, France and Britain – and they all left their mark on the country.

Much of the history of the clashes between the Boers, the Zulus and the British – take any two of the three – and there was a battle for land between them stretching back to the early 1,800’s, is remembered to this day in the names of towns, features within the landscape (e.g. Blood River) and countless monuments. Especially so in the east of the country, abutting the Indian Ocean, in the province that is today called KwaZulu Natal.

But enough of history, what has South Africa to show its guests these days………..this is like being asked “what did the Romans do for us”……….. (courtesy of the Life of Brian – such a great film).