“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
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.
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
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
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
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
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.
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.
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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