HowStuffWorks "Maps of South Africa"

maps of south africa
what's inside: south africa

Maps of South Africa show the location of major cities and regions in South Africa. Check out our interactive maps of South Africa.

Cape Town

Cape Town

Maps of Cape Town show locations and major features. Explore interactive Cape Town maps. See more »

Durban

Durban

Maps of Durban show locations and major features. Explore interactive Durban maps. See more »

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Johannesburg

Johannesburg

Maps of Johannesburg show locations and major features. Explore interactive Johannesburg maps. See more »

 south africa thematic maps
Country (long form) Republic of South Africa
Capital Pretoria;
note - Cape Town is the legislative center and Bloemfontein the judicial center
Total Area 471,010.66 sq mi
1,219,912.00 sq km
(slightly less than twice the size of Texas)
Population 43,586,097 (July 2001 est.)
note: South Africa took a census October 1996 which showed a population of 40,583,611 (after an official adjustment for a 6.8% underenumeration based on a postenumeration survey); estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality and death rates, lower population and growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected
Estimated Population in 2050 32,538,704
Languages 11 official languages, including Afrikaans, English, Ndebele, Pedi, Sotho, Swazi, Tsonga, Tswana, Venda, Xhosa, Zulu
Literacy 81.8% total, 81.9% male, 81.7% female (1995 est.)
Religions Christian 68% (includes most whites and Coloreds, about 60% of blacks and about 40% of Indians), Muslim 2%, Hindu 1.5% (60% of Indians), indigenous beliefs and animist 28.5%
Life Expectancy 47.64 male, 48.56 female (2001 est.)
Government Type republic
Currency 1 rand (R) = 100 cents
GDP (per capita) $8,500 (2000 est.)
Industry mining (world's largest producer of platinum, gold, chromium), automobile assembly, metalworking, machinery, textile, iron and steel, chemicals, fertilizer, foodstuffs
Agriculture corn, wheat, sugarcane, fruits, vegetables; beef, poultry, mutton, wool, dairy products
Arable Land 10%
Natural Resources gold, chromium, antimony, coal, iron ore, manganese, nickel, phosphates, tin, uranium, gem diamonds, platinum, copper, vanadium, salt, natural gas
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Geography of South Africa

South Africa, or Republic of South Africa, an independent country in Africa. Until 1961, it was called the Union of South Africa.

History of South Africa

Discovery of the Cape of Good Hope in 1488 by the Portuguese explorer Bartholomeu Dias opened the way for Portugal's trade with the East Indies.