South Africa covers over 1.2 million square kilometers with approximately 2,800 km of coastline on the Atlantic and Indian Oceans. It contains the oldest archaeological sites in the world, dating back 3 million years.
In 1948 the newly elected National Party intensified the systemic segregation of the people. This became known as Apartheid, with less than 10% of the population controlling everything. After world-wide attention resulted in sanctions, this system began to be dismantled in 1990, and the first open elections followed in 1994.
South Africa boasts a large and diverse cultural heritage, including cuisine, music, and dance. It has 11 official languages.