If you drive on the N1 from Johannesburg in a northern direction, then it is difficult to miss the prominent mosque on the hill at Allandale off ramp. It is called the Nizamiye Turkish Masjid, Midrand. It is an entire complex and anybody can visit it for free. The decoration on the inside of the mosque will leave you speechless.
I have made a list of some interesting facts about the mosque:
1. It is the first Ottoman-style mosque in the Southern Hemisphere.
2. The dome is 32m high and the 4 minarets are 55m. Each minaret has 3 balconies.
3. It is a 25% smaller replica of the Selimiye Camii mosque in Edirne, Turkey, which was completed in the 1570's.
4. It can accommodate 3 000 worshippers.
5. It took 3 years to complete.
6. 200 Workers from Turkey worked in 8 hour shifts around the clock to complete the mosque.
You can find more info at www.nizamiye.co.za.
Pilanesberg National Park is situated in the North West Province of South Africa. Pilanesberg is described by geologists as an Alkaline Ring Complex. There are only 3 alkaline volcanoes in the world, one is Pilanesberg and the other 2 is in Russia and Greenland.
Operation Genesis was launched in 1979. This was the largest game resettlement project in South Africa at the time. The project was very successful and Pilanesberg is currently well stocked with game.
The park exists within the transition zone between the dry Kalahari and the wetter bushveld. The park also borders the Sun City complex. There is nearly 200 km of road, over 300 species of birds, bird hides, picnic sites, dams and restaurants.
You can easily make a day trip to Pilanesberg from Pretoria or Johannesburg.
I have recently read the book called 'Bloedrivier'. It is also available in English and it is called 'Blood River'. The author is VE d'Assonville and I bought the book at the Voortrekker Monument for R100.00.
The book is about the events that led up to the Battle of Blood River, in Kwazulu Natal, South Africa, on 16 December 1838. The author did not go into an in-depth study, but he simply put the facts on the table from the side of the Voortrekkers and the side of the Zulus. It is very clear to understand what happened before and after the Battle of Bloodriver.
It is easy to read and d'Assonville manages to keep your attention all the way.
It is a natural feature in South Africa and it is located in Mpumalanga province. It forms part of the northern section of the Drakensberg escarpment. The canyon is 25 km in length and it consists mostly of red sandstone. It is one of the largest canyons in the world and, after the Fish River Canyon, it is the second largest canyon in Africa. It is certainly the largest green canyon.
You can drive on the escarpment, and this route is called the Panorama Route, and there are different look out points, where you can stop and get out of your vehicle to take a look. Beside of the number of waterfalls there is the Three Rondawels, God's Window, Pinnacle and Bourke's Luck Potholes.
You will soon see why it is known as one of the great wonders of nature in Africa.
I am the owner of Flycatcher Travel and my idea with this blog is to report on sites that we visit. I am also very interested in South African history.