Affectionately known as the Mother City, Cape Town was founded in 1652 and is South Africa’s oldest city. Cape Town is rated as one of the most beautiful cities in the world with a backdrop of flat-topped Table Mountain juxtaposed...Learn More
Study Abroad in South Africa
- Search for 45 organizations offering a total of 88 Study Abroad programs -
Study In South Africa, A Wild Rainbow Nation
With a population made vibrant by races of many types, South Africa is rightfully called the ‘rainbow nation.’ Here is a setting where the people are just as interesting and colorful as the country itself. Study abroad in South Africa and have a meaningful learning experience amidst a picturesque backdrop and rich biodiversity. Learn more on what the ‘rainbow nation’ is about.
Cape Point, one of many spectacular views in South Africa. Photo by Troy Peden
Dynamic Peoples. The majority of South Africans are classified as ‘African’ or ‘black’ (of Bantu origin). The three most populous African groups are the Zulu, the Sotho, and the Xhosa. Other major ethnic groups are the Tsonga, Ndebele, Swazi, Tswana and Venda. They speak Bantu languages.
The ‘white’ South Africans are descendants of Dutch, French and German settlers, and the British colonialists. Also living here are people of other types of European lineage including Portuguese, Hungarian, German, and Greek. The majority of white South Africans can speak English, even those whose primary language is Afrikaans, mainly because it is a mandatory subject in schools. It is the predominant medium of communication for commerce.
Mostly found in the Cape region is an interesting mix of ethnic backgrounds that include San, Grigua, Khoi, Chinese, and Malay. The majority speak Afrikaans. However, most of the South Africans with Asian ancestry are Indian descendants of the indentured workers who came to the country to work in the sugar plantations. Most live in the city of Durban. The majority of Indian South Africans is English speaking.
After surviving a history of violence and discord, South Africans are working extra hard to achieve harmony. Though the country is still undeniably plagued with racial inequality, xenophobic tensions, and a high HIV/AIDS rate, South Africans remain an upbeat and warm people. Do not be surprised to find kids greeting you with “molo!” (“good morning!”) or farmers cautioning you to drive safely on rural dirt roads. Study abroad in South Africa is an amazing sociological experience — whether you’re a sociology major or not.
Dynamic Climate. South Africa’s climate is just as varied and interesting as its people. You will find a unique mix of temperate, subtropical, Mediterranean, and desert climate in the country.
Studying abroad in South Africa from October to February brings you there during their summer. The season differs across the country, with rainy summers in the north and dry summers in the south. A great time for study abroad in South Africa is during autumn, between February and April — with gentle rainfalls, warm sunshine and cold nights.
Winter in South Africa falls between mid-May and July. The winter weather is also varied across the country, with a cold and dry climate in the north and rain showers in the south. Spring (between August and September) is beautiful with its blooming plants and trees, soft breezes, comfortable warmth during the day, and a mild chill at night.
Dynamic Activities. You will never run out of exciting things to do when studying abroad in South Africa. This picturesque country offers majestic mountains and cliff faces, splendid beaches, captivating semi-deserts, lush forest belts, world-famous natural parks and an impressive wildlife.
Experience the most epic of views as you hike to the top of the uniquely flat-topped mountain, the world-famous Table Mountain. Visit the beautiful stretch of coastal paradise called the Garden Route, and make the most out of the hiking trails and eco-tourism activities it offers.
Nobody studying in South Africa would think to miss out on its beautiful beaches. With more than 2,500 kilometers of coastline, there are options galore for amazing beach experiences. Catch a wave at the internationally acclaimed sports spot (the Jeffrey’s Bay) or head straight to Africa’s watersports capital (the Port Elizabeth).
You will find all sorts of terrains in South Africa for your adventures. You can go scuba diving or skydiving, sandboarding or snowboarding. You may choose to go dangling from a bungee cord, hanging onto a mountainside, or bouncing along a 4x4 on rugged mountain terrain.
A South African experience is not complete without an exciting encounter with the wildlife. The Big Five — lion, leopard, elephant, buffalo and rhino — will keep you fascinated, not to mention other South African favorites like the giraffe, zebra, cheetah, hyena, hippo, warthog, and the dung beetle. With 20 national parks, hundreds of game lodges and private parks, 299 species of mammals, and 858 species of birds, South Africa is a true standout in the arena of wildlife diversity.
Dynamic Food. Studying abroad in South Africa is a great choice for a budding chef or anyone who loves and appreciates good food. Cuisine in South Africa is just as diverse as its ethnicity. You get to sample the many different types of curry served by the Indian community in Durban. Make sure you also try the Malay-influenced cuisine in Cape Town. Carnivores love the wide selection of meats that include the more common beef and lamb to the more exotic zebra, crocodile, ostrich, pig trotters and sheep’s head. The traditional Zulu and Xhosa meals are not very outlandish, but are made highly interesting by the presentation that incorporates a lively community spirit amidst an upbeat atmosphere. Want a real culinary adventure? Foodies swear by a beef dish called bobotie with saffron rice and fried caterpillars.
Those with more conservative taste buds will be relieved to know that a good number of restaurants offer traditional Western and Chinese food. In keeping with the country’s spirit of “local is lekker’”(tasty), most restaurants serve a few regional dishes alongside the Western cuisine. If you want the best of both worlds, try one of the fusion restaurants springing up around the country. The sprawling wine route in Cape Town also guarantees a great assortment of vino to suit all budgets and palates.
Whatever your tastes, don’t miss out on the most popular South African dining experience — the braai. The African equivalent of the Western barbeque, braai usually includes sausages (called boerewors), kebabs (sosaties), chops, steak, fire-smoked vegetables, salads and breads. Braaing, a favorite South African pastime, offers a great avenue for making friends and meeting new people.
Fun Facts About South Africa
South Africa supplies 80 percent of the world’s demand for platinum, one of the rarest of metals.
With more than 1,500 species of plants, Table Mountain has more plant diversity than the entire United Kingdom.
You will find the world’s longest wine route in South Africa.
South Africa is ranked third in the world in terms of supplying safe and drinkable tap water.
The Kruger National Park offers the greatest variety of wildlife species on the African continent.
South Africa’s Palace of the Lost City is currently the world’s largest theme resort hotel. It is also the largest building project completed in the Southern hemisphere.
You will find the world’s smallest succulent plants in South Africa (at less than 0.39 inches) as well as the largest (the baobab tree).
Scientists found traces of blue-green algae that date back 3,500 million in eastern South Africa. This is one of the earliest evidence of life on earth.
Fast Facts About South Africa
Capital: Pretoria (executive), Bloemfontein (judicial), Cape Town (legislative)
Government: Constitutional Parliamentary Republic
Languages: Afrikaans, English, Ndebele, Xhosa, Zulu, Sepedi, Sesotho, Setswana, Swati, Tshivenda and Xitsonga
Currency: South African Rand (ZAR)
Studying In South Africa: Safety Concerns
So you are interested in studying abroad in South Africa. Maybe you’re wondering if it’s safe to live, work, and study there. Like most places, this country is not without danger; however, such threats should not keep you from choosing South Africa for study abroad. It is a huge travel and tourism destination, and most visitors come and go without mishap.
Navigating through the suburban streets of
Cape Town. Photo Courtesy
nickgraywfu on Flickr
Before you get there, make sure that you only deal with credible study-abroad program providers for South Africa. Look for positive testimonials and get a hold of program alumni. When you’re in the country, awareness of possible threats and precautionary measures should keep you safe and protected. Here’s the real deal on staying safe while studying abroad in South Africa — they’re also good common-sense tips for traveling anywhere in the world.
Theft And Robbery. South Africa’s history (due to its former apartheid government) created a highly unequal distribution of wealth among its citizens. The gross disparity between the rich and poor resulted in high rates of robbery and theft; even though apartheid no longer exists there, the income gap remains, and “wealthy looking” people remain targets (including international students, regardless of how lean their budget may be). Learning about the common schemes in South Africa will help you stay vigilant and keep you from falling victim.
ATMs are hotspots for robberies. Beware of the “Good Samaritan” ploy, a common scheme where a stranger offers to help you with your ATM transaction only to rob you once you’ve withdrawn your cash. Refuse any offer to assist from strangers. If you notice anyone approaching you at an ATM (appearing more interested in your transaction than in using the machine), cancel your transaction and leave. Use an ATM only during normal business hours, and at highly populated places; avoid ATMs in remote areas. The best places to withdraw money at an ATM are inside banks, shopping malls, hotels, and other high-traffic areas that have security guards and cameras monitoring the place. Be observant and watch out for any suspicious person or activity near the ATM. Also, be wary of cords or foreign objects attached to the ATM. If you notice any suspicious device, leave at once and notify the police.
Avoid conspicuous displays of wealth. Another ongoing scheme in South Africa involves crime gangs that target individuals in public places, particularly shopping centers. They identify a person that looks wealthy, and follow that person home where he or she is robbed. The victim is sometimes held at gunpoint, though such use of force is generally only done when the target offers some form of resistance. These gangs commonly target people who appear affluent. Do not wear flashy jewelry or display large amounts of cash, and be discreet about making expensive purchases. If you are carrying a lot of cash or an expensive item, avoid walking, and opt for a taxi to your destination. Always watch for others who appear to be watching you. If you feel you are being followed, head straight to a high-traffic public place or to a police station.
Criminals often go after ‘soft’ targets. These are people who appear preoccupied and not very attentive of their surroundings. A distracted person is a good target, so be observant: don’t walk while you’re texting, reading, looking at your phone or music player, rummaging through your bag, or otherwise not paying attention to your surroundings. If you must do any of the above, stop and do it in a safe, visible, well-populated area, then continue on your way.
Choose airport transportation wisely. Although generally rare, visitors leaving the airport are targeted by criminals. Be extra watchful when leaving the airport. Make sure you choose your mode of transportation well. Only hire vehicles approved by the airport, or arrange your transportation with the organization hosting your study-abroad program in South Africa.
Traffic And Road Safety. South Africa has a high rate of deaths from road accidents, mostly due to a combination of inadequate enforcement of traffic laws, substandard driving skills, driving under the influence of alcohol, aggressive driving, and road rage. Steer clear of minibus taxis: these are white vans that are usually operated by unlicensed drivers. Minibus taxis charge fixed rates, which makes it profitable for them to get to their destination and back as quickly as possible. They usually disregard traffic signs and speed limits. Make sure you choose marked, metered taxis that are associated with established taxi companies.
Pedestrians are advised to be extra careful. Drivers in South Africa are known for being aggressive to pedestrians and often fail to give way even along marked pedestrian lanes. Needless to say, the extra caution must come from the pedestrian.
Diseases/ Health Risks. Most parts of South Africa are malaria-free. You do have to take precautions when visiting low-altitude areas in Mpumalanga and Limpopo provinces, particularly the Kruger National Park and other game reserves. Malaria risk exists in KwaZulu-Natal, particularly in the coastal lowlands. Taking preventive treatments, like a malaria prophylaxis, is highly advised. As additional precaution, you may choose to visit these areas between June and September when risk is much lower.
Tuberculosis is a health issue in South Africa, but exposure to the disease is highly unlikely. Take extra care when visiting risk areas like hospitals, homeless shelters or prisons. The parasitic disease schistosomiasis is also present in the country, but is mostly isolated in distant eastern and northeastern coastal freshwater bodies. Avoid exposure to high-risk freshwater.
Another known health risk in South Africa is the prevalence of HIV and AIDS, with more than a quarter of the population infected by the disease. Always practice safe sex. Avoid intravenous drugs. Never share razors and other personal care items.
You can expect high-standard medical services in private hospitals in the urban areas. Make sure that you secure travel insurance before traveling to remote areas. Travel insurance plans usually cover emergency helicopter lifts from remote areas to hospitals in the city. Be aware that most travel insurance plans do not include coverage for accidents while doing adventure sports like rappelling, mountain biking, hiking, and kite surfing.
Natural Hazards. As with most adventure destinations, South Africa is not without danger. Table Mountain alone has more fatalities than Mount Everest; fatal hiking accidents happen almost on a weekly basis. Make sure you are well equipped and dressed appropriately for your hiking adventure; never hike alone, and have a mobile phone with emergency numbers already plugged in if you should need to call for help.
Shark attacks have been reported along South Africa’s coastline. Local authorities are on constant lookout and are ready to sound a warning siren in case a shark appears near the shore. Hypothermia deaths and drowning are also common along the country’s coastline. Make sure that you limit your water adventures along marked areas. Wild animal attacks on tourists in game parks have also been reported. When on a safari, make sure you don’t leave your vehicle.
Safety Of Women. South Africa has the highest reported incidence of rape in the world. Foreigners are not usually direct targets, and these incidents mostly happen in the townships. Women who travel alone in South Africa may experience some sort of harassment, but it is usually more annoying than threatening. Women are advised to dress conservatively and to wear sunglasses so they can avoid eye contact with strangers. If going out at night, women should travel in groups. It is best to ignore catcalls and whistles from men. If asking for directions, women are advised to inquire from other women. Women who feel that they are being followed should walk into a shop, hotel, or any establishment where they can ask for help. If you feel someone groping you, make a loud scene and get the attention of any police or security nearby.
Check ++ verified
A mid-sized college town nestled among the mountains and vineyards, Stellenbosch provides a perfect setting for exploring the diverse culture and geography of South Africa. Stroll the tree-lined avenues, enjoy a meal at one of the many outdoor cafes, or set out on a quick trip to Cape Town or the coast.
With more than 90 programs in 32 cities, IES Abroad is dedicated to broadening our global reach and continuing our commitment to offering students outstanding academic options coupled with every-day opportunities for cultural immersion.
This program is appropriate for students from all academic disciplines who have a strong interest in learning about transformation in contemporary South Africa in a picturesque college-town setting.
Are you passionate about wildlife filmmaking? Would you like to learn how to become an independent wildlife filmmaker? If the answer to these questions is YES then Beyond Borders Film School is for you! Being the first 3D wildlife film school in the world we will not only teach you everything about wildlife filmmaking, we will also give you a one in a lifetime opportunity to make your first ...
Choose the academic program that best suits your college degree and general elective needs. Choose from a variety of different academic in the areas of Environmental Studies, Community Service, Community Development, Human Rights, Liberal Arts and more – each designed to localize your learning by getting you out of the classroom and immersed in your host city.
South Africa is the largest country in sub-Saharan Africa after Angola. It is one-eighth the size of the United States (twice the size of Texas), with approximately one-seventh the population. South Africa boasts a coastline of more than 2,000 miles of beaches as well as a range of biodiversity that is virtually unparalleled. South Africa even has one of the largest national park areas in the w...
This course will examine pre and post-apartheid South Africa through a critical lens and will explore the effects of controlling education to maintain the status quo in apartheid-era South Africa. It will also examine the role and the impact of education in modern day South Africa and its potential to uplift previously disadvantaged populations in the young democracy. In order to understand whe...
Examine current sociopolitical debates surrounding South Africa’s multicultural society in the context of the country’s history of colonialism and conquest, slavery and oppression, and apartheid and racism. South Africa is truly a multicultural society, with 11 national languages and numerous ethnic groups. While South Africans have seen tremendous change since the first multiracial elections i...
The modern, air-conditioned language school Cape Town just across the road from Green Market Square has every facility for students including 18 classrooms, learning centre, well-equipped kitchen, comfortable student lounges and free internet and e-mail access. At Eurocentres Cape Town you can attend the following English courses. - General Language - Business Courses - Exam Courses - ...
The Milano School of International Affairs, Management, and Urban Policy part of The New School for Public Engagement in New York City blends theory and practice to prepare a new generation of professionals to become agents of change in an increasingly complex and interconnected world. Each summer, Milanos International Field Program (IFP) program offers opportunities ranging from rural comm...
The LSE-UCT July School is an exciting new intensive academic programme offering the opportunity to study important social sciences issues relevant to Africa today, taught in English by world-leading faculty from LSE and UCT in the beautiful, cosmopolitan city of Cape Town. From 1-13 July 2013, this two-week summer school-style programme will offer a range of exciting university-level cours...
Nation-building, globalization, and decolonizing the mind, from the perspectives of the new democracies of southern Africa- these are just few of the crucial issues to be dealt on. Namibia after decades of apartheid under South African colonization won its independence in 1990. Four year after South Africa then had its first democratic elections. As these nations struggle to build nationhood an...
The Marquette University South Africa Service Learning Program offers students the unique opportunity to pursue the dual path of academic coursework and real-world learning. While students attend weekly classes at the University of Western Cape, a school which played a key role in ending apartheid, they also work part time at local nonprofit organizations. From educational to health awareness o...
The University of Cape Town is South Africa’s oldest university, and one of Africa’s leading teaching and research institutions, nestled on the slopes of Table Mountain in the beautiful Cape Peninsula. The city offers a unique introduction to Africa, a changing landscape of multicultural contrasts and communities.
Arcadia University, founded in 1853, is pleased to announce the establishment of The College of Global Studies. The College has transformed from the Center for Education Abroad through a total restructuring of the University Academic Affairs.
Help to conserve some of Africa's most precious and fascinating wildlife in the spectacular surroundings of the southern part of the Kruger National Park, on our South Africa Wildlife Field Guide Course. Known as the Rainbow Nation, South Africa is blessed with some of the most dramatic scenery and charismatic wildlife on Earth. Obtain your accredited Field Guide qualification by working wit...
The ISV Academic Credit/Independent Study Program Since 2002, nearly 2,000 students from hundreds of universities across North America, Europe and Australia have received academic credit through independent study or transfer credit from an ISV partner university for their participation on an ISV program and successful completion of the course requirements. Former students describe earning ac...
Train in the African bush for six months with an optional six months working on a game reserve. Qualify as a safari field guide in Kruger National Park
The Gilman International Scholarship Program has 1 program. Program is offered in United States.
Established in 1963, Semester at Sea is the only global education program of its kind in the world. Using a ship as our traveling campus, undergraduates, lifelong learners, faculty, and lecturers live and learn together while circumnavigating the globe each fall and spring semester and exploring a world region in the summer term. Credit earned is fully transferable by the University of Virginia...
These study abroad programs are designed for both students and non bona-fide students who would like to learn more about behind the scenes wildlife conservation and veterinary work in Africa. These unique educational opportunities include field lectures, discussions, and field work to maximize the learning experience while traveling through South Africa. Courses are accredited by the University...
Connect-123's semester-long Social Entrepreneurship Program at the University of Cape Town (UCT) provides a hands-on, one-of-a-kind experience of the challenges of entrepreneurship as well as the special opportunities present in emerging markets. The program blends classroom-based and experiential learning by including a substantial fieldwork component where students work side-by-side with ...
If you're looking to experience the world, climb aboard. Since 1993, Broadreach has taken over 12,000 students on adventures abroad for middle school, high school and college students. Prepare for hands-on experience, trying new things, making lifelong friends and having amazing adventures while earning a pile of certifications as proof of your achievements. The world awaits!
Join as a student on the Kruger to Coast Field Study Project to explore Kruger Park, assist with current research on threatened birds, mammals and reptiles in Swaziland and snorkel with whale sharks in Mozambique. The project starts with a 5-day tour of Kruger National Park. Kruger National Park is probably Africa's most famous conservation area. Spanning nearly 20,000 km, it covers a vast ...
CFHI South Africa programs offer participants the opportunity to learn more about health issues that transcend national borders, class, ethnicity, and cultural divisions. By participating in CFHI’s global health education in South Africa, you will gain a unique insight into healthcare systems of developing countries and increase your cultural competency.
Help conserve Cheetahs and other predators in their natural environment. You'll live on a Game Reserve in South Africa, in a fantastic bush camp where you get up close and personal with the animals. So if you want to make a difference to the indigenous wildlife of South Africa, this is the placement for you! You'll have the once-in-a-lifetime chance to witness the magnificent African drama f...
The International Human Rights Exchange (IHRE) is the worlds only full-semester, multidisciplinary program in human rights. The program is housed at the University of Witwatersrand (Wits) in Johannesburg, South Africa and run in close partnership with Bard College. At IHRE, we believe that the subject of human rights provides an excellent framework for realizing the goal of liberal education...
This Guest House is situated close to the city centre of Stellenbosch in one of the noblest and most beautiful part of the city. The owners provide clients with a home away from home, meeting their highest requirements. Being in the heart of the Cape Winelands, it is the ideal starting point for full or half day tours of wine estates or around the cape. Guests can enjoy the view from the gues...
Cape Town, South Africa is a medley of sheer natural splendor, beautiful weather, and astounding bio-diversity. From “Table Mountain” dwarfing the city center and the sunny blue beaches of “False Bay” -- to Great White Sharks, baboons, and a plethora of treasures produced by nature -- visitors have a reason to dig deep within and connect to a larger world. Though the magnificence of the Cape is...
Can't find what you're looking for? Get Advice!