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Unformatted text preview: Your Guide to South Africa During the course of the semester learning about South Africa has been a very rewarding experience. A mistake people commonly make is confusing South Africa for southern Africa. I learned South Africa is a country that has so much to offer the world from a variety of languages to important people that helped make their country a better place to live in. Geography and Climate South Africa is located at the southernmost tip of Africa and is surrounded by the Atlantic and Indian Oceans. It has six border countries: Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Swaziland, and Lesotho. Lesotho lies in the center of South Africa; making it Lesotho’s only neighboring country. South Africa is one of the many countries in the world that has multiple capitals; they are Pretoria the administrative capital; Cape Town the legislative capital; and Bloemfontein the judiciary capital. The Columbia Encyclopedia divides South Africa into three sections, “a great interior plateau; an escarpment of mountain ranges that rims the plateau on the east, south, and west; and a marginal area lying between the escarpment and the sea 1 .” The plateau, Highveld, has many rolling grasslands. The climate in this area is arid and desert-like because the precipitation is low due to the mountains in the surrounding 1 1 “South Africa.” The Columbia Encyclopedia, Sixth Edition. 2008. Encyclopedia.com 1 Feb. 2010 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>. 1 area. The Drakensburg Mountains commonly referred to as the “dragon’s back,” reach up to 10,000 feet high making it the highest mountain range in South Africa 2 . Next, we have the Kalahari Desert in north South Africa. The climate in this area during the summer is approximately 104°. The most rainfall occurs during the months of December through April. Since this is a period of many tropical thunderstorms, the desert then becomes “a green oasis covered in colorful, wild flowers all over 3 .” Down south are Great and Little Karoo, central plateaus with semiarid climate. One of South Africa’s main rivers is the Limpopo River, which empties into the Indian Ocean and sometimes dries out due to little rainfall. Even though most of this country’s climate is dry, on its east there is subtropical grassland. During the winter, rain falls only at the southern tip of South Africa near Cape of Good Hope. Natural Resources South Africa has many diverse natural resources that contribute to the world. According to The World Factbook (2010) online, South Africa’s resources include: gold, chromium, antimony, coal, iron ore, manganese, nickel, phosphates, tin, uranium, gem diamonds, platinum, copper, vanadium, salt and natural gas. Two of the most important resources are gold and diamonds....
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This note was uploaded on 08/18/2011 for the course AFR 375 taught by Professor Staff during the Spring '08 term at University of Texas.
- Spring '08