Activities / Attractions

35 Reasons Why We Love South Africa

Updated Friday, 25 October 2019

Have you noticed how fond people are of rubbishing the country every time something goes ‘wrong’? I find this particularly with those friends of mine who have left the country, for whatever reason, and are not wholly convinced that they’ve done the right thing (although they will never say as much).

The minute negative news hits the airwaves – take the Marikana mining fiasco, and consequent Lonmin share plummet, as an example (not that it is not worth the mileage it has received) – people cannot wait to paste the latest offense on FB or they send you emails filled with exclamation marks.

But there is a lot to love about South Africa. I spent time trawling the Internet to find out what others think.

Cape Town Sunset

Here is a list, in no particular order, of the reasons why South Africans (and Visitors) love South Africa…


1. Sunshine!

And a lot of it…you don’t find blue skies like this in Europe, or Canada, or New Zealand (okay, maybe in Oz – we’ll allow that…)

2. Bushveld

Big 5 country, a vast expanse of acacia trees, dry sand, the occasional water hole, the sighting of elephant, buffalo, wildebeest, zebra, lion…

3. Afrikaner hospitality

No better place than round a braai with a beer in your hand, followed by pap en sous,  sugared sweet potato and maybe a four-bean salad (the vegetable afterthought)

4. Highveld thunderstorms

Nothing like that rolling, slate-grey approach, and the smell of the earth after rain

5. Bunny chows

Durban‘s famous hollowed out half loaves stuffed with curry is half the reason people return home

Bunny Chow

6. We don’t have a nuclear weapons programme

We might have a nuclear power station or two, but we’re the only nation to voluntarily dismantle our nuclear weapons

7. Table Mountain

One of the most recognisable icons, and one of the oldest mountains in the world

8. Incredible landscapes

The Drakensberg, the Tsitsikamma, the Karoo, the Panorama Route, and innumerable mountain passes

9. Shosholoza

The one song we all love to get wrong

10. The kreepy crawly

… Pratley’s putty, cats-eyes and Dolosse blocks – we invented them all

The Drakensberg

11. Open roads and free parking

(most of the time)

12. The toyi-toyi

Because nobody dances quite like an oppressed or celebrating African

13. The price of coffee and petrol

Because, despite the hike in price of oil, both are still a lot more expensive elsewhere

14. Taxis

Where would we be without all that bass?

15. SA English

… is peppered with bits and pieces of the other official language

The South African Flag

16. Our flag

The only national flag in the world with six colours

17. Platinum

We produce 80% of the world’s platinum

18. Wine

We have over 17 ‘official’ wine routes countrywide, claim the longest wine route (R62), and are among the top ten wine producing countries, in the world

19. Missing front teeth

… and horse drawn carts

20. Mrs Balls Chutney…

Biltong, Ouma rusks and Koffeehuis


21. Slap chips

(in the UK chips are crisps and slap chips are chips, but in USA they’re fries)

22. Nandos

For its controversial marketing and for exporting the brand overseas

23. Flat vowels

where else in the world?

24. Jacarandas

in Pretoria

25. Nelson Mandela

We ♥ Madiba

Nelson Mandela Statue

26. Our constitution

One of the most liberal and free constitutions in the world

27. Kief, lekker, shweet

Nowhere else will you hear this except, maybe, on a tube in London

28. Cape Town

… cape town

29. Whales

on the coastlines of the country

30. World Heritage Sites

We have 8 of them

Hermanus Spring Whale Festival

31. Windmills of the Karoo

SA has something like 290 000 windmills throughout the country, second only in number to Australia

32. Sport

We got the World Cup right!

33. Shopping at the robots

anything from hats to wire art up for grabs

34. We have 3 capital cities

Pretoria, Cape town and Bloemfontein

35. Braais

who else celebrates a national braai day?

Jacaranda City!

Plan your trip in South Africa