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Exploring South Africa: Travelers’ Insights

December 01, 2008
by Liz Colville
South Africa has a tumultuous history of colonization and apartheid; a mix of cultures, including English, Afrikaans and Zulu; a variety of wildlife; and several bustling cities. The country provides fertile ground for travelers to explore how these disparate cultures intersect, and the Web provides ample opportunity for travelers to share their discoveries through photos, blogs and videos.

Imagery Galore

Head to TravelBlog for more than a thousand images of South Africa taken by blogger tourists. The user profile pages offer blog entries full of the stories behind the pictures. You'll also find a brief history of South Africa, South Africa facts, a map of South Africa and plenty more to get you up to speed on the country.

Oenophiles Down South

We can't forget that South Africa is wine country. Explore one traveler's blog from RealTravel, which chronicles a picturesque wine-tasting trip to South Africa's winelands. This entry concerns Franschhoek, a small village surrounded by mountains and vineyards that have been in existence since the 1600s. Click on "View more photos" to see where the travelers stayed and the eye-opening views they had.

Animals at Dawn

This video blogger and lucky visitor had to wake up at 4:30 a.m. for the South African safari he documents here, but admits it was well worth it. From our perspective, the peace and quiet of early morning certainly makes for a moving video: buffalo and gazelle grazing in the dim light and a giraffe and her calf, annoyed by the camera, are among the stars of the film.

An Outsider's Perspective

Andi Perullo's blog about her study abroad experience in Durban, in the Natal province, is an appealing and thoughtful look at South Africa from the perspective of an open-minded outsider. Meeting locals, talking about poverty and health problems, learning about the "bold" sex education program (called Love Life), and participating in South African customs and culture, this respectful traveler connects her distant, envious readers to her adventure and provides some great photos, too.

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