Program Details

Excursions and Day Trips:

In and around Cape Town:
Cape Town Introduction
Greenmarket Square Craft Market
Visit to Township
Kirstenbosch Gardens
Table Mountain
Cape of Good Hope
Stellenbosch Wine Country
Robben Island<

Cape Town, South Africa
Program Type:
Study Abroad
Degree Level:

Program Overview

Program Description:
Arrive Date: 6/22/2013 End Date: 7/19/2013

This program introduces students to the literature, history, cinema and ecology of South Africa. We will study the phases of the country’s past: its pre-European history, colonial settlement, the apartheid and post-apartheid eras. The literature examines the themes of place, dislocation and change and includes works by Nobel prize winners Nadine Gordimer, J. M. Coetzee and Nelson Mandela. The last decade has witnessed a flowering of South African cinema, and we’ll watch a selection of films that address recent political and cultural changes. The course includes field trips to museums, places of historical interest, and botanical and zoological parks in and around Cape Town. The last week takes place at Edeni Bush Lodge, a private game reserve bordering Kruger National Park, where we will observe plants, birds and mammals in their natural habitats, including South Africa’s Big Five—lion, leopard, elephant, rhinoceros, and buffalo. Prerequisite: University Writing Program 1 or English 3 or equivalent.

Frequently Asked Questions:
Q. I’ve heard that South Africa is dangerous—is that true?
A. It is true that there is a lot of street crime in South Africa’s larger cities. But students are given very clear rules to follow to avoid being victims of street crime. No student who has followed the rules has ever had a problem.
Q. If crime is a problem, can I travel after the program?
A. Yes, but you’ll want to plan your itinerary and perhaps arrange to travel with other students in the program. You’ll meet the other students in your program at the pre-departure orientation in May and you’ll be able to be in touch with them through the program listserv. Your instructor Eric Schroeder can also make suggestions of places of interest that you might want to visit.
Q. What is the official language in South Africa?
A. Actually there are 11 official languages in South Africa, including English, Afrikaans, and nine African languages. But everyone understands English, so you won’t have any problem communicating with South Africans.
Q. What is the food like in South Africa?
A. Delicious. And Cape Town where we spend the first three weeks has some of the most diverse cuisine in the world. Food is also reasonably priced in South Africa, so you’ll have an opportunity to sample different sorts of food—from guinea fowl to springbok, from Cape Malay specialties to warthog ribs. As you can see, there’s an emphasis on meat, but vegetarians will find that there is a range of food for them, too.
Q. How hot will it be there?
A. Remember that since we’re going to be in the Southern hemisphere, it’s going to be winter in July. But Cape Town has a Mediterranean climate much like that of California, so it will be a bit like being in Davis in January—it will be cool and occasionally rainy but the weather rarely prevents us from exploring Cape Town and its environs. When we travel to the game reserve at Edeni, the climate changes—there it’s a bit like the high desert in Southern California: it’s sunny and warm during the days but the temperature can drop to freezing at night. So you’ll want to pack layers—a good thermal underlayer for the game reserve and a good waterproof outerlayer for Cape Town. And bring good waterproof walking shoes.
Q. I’m an animal science major and am interested in taking the course for that reason. But I’m worried because the courses are listed as English and Humanities. Should I stop worrying?
A. Yes. Generally the City to Safari course attracts a wide range of majors, and often the largest group of students are bio sci majors of various sorts since they are interested in the plants, birds, and especially mammals that they will see on safari. But the science students rarely struggle with the readings—and we give all students the same advice—get an early start on the reading before you leave and you’ll have more free time to enjoy in South Africa.
Q. What, exactly, is a safari?
A. South Africans use the term loosely to describe an experience that involves spending time in nature and observing the natural world. In our case, we’ll be staying at a small, tented camp. The tents, however, are like no tents you’ve seen in the U.S.—they have comfortable beds and built-in bathrooms. There is an electric wire around the camp that keeps us in at night—and keeps the animals out! As part of a safari experience you would normally take a game drive in the early morning and in the late afternoon (and we’ll do this on most days). The guides who take us on these drives are local experts who will point out a wide range of plants, birds, and mammals on each drive.
Q. What animals can I expect to see on the safari?
A. We stay at a managed game reserve, which means that the biologist who tries to keep this self-contained ecosystem in balance strives to have a diverse population of predators and prey alike. Each

Excursions and Day Trips:

In and around Cape Town:
Cape Town Introduction
Greenmarket Square Craft Market
Visit to Township
Kirstenbosch Gardens
Table Mountain
Cape of Good Hope
Stellenbosch Wine Country
Robben Island
District Six Museum

In Johannesburg:
Aparthied Museum

In and around Edeni:
Maholoholo Wildlife Rehabilitation
Lumikisa Elementary School visit
Game drives and walks at Edeni Game Reserve
Game drive at Kruger Park

Upper-division units (open to freshmen through graduates). Taught in English. UC Davis courses taught by University of California, Davis faculty.

Please contact UC Davis Summer Abroad for the most up-to-date information concerning program costs. Programs start around $4,000.

All students enrolled in a Summer Abroad program (Davis and Non-Davis) will have the opportunity to apply for a Travel Award ($500 - $1,500.) Travel award deadline: March 5, 2013. Enrollment deadline is April 5, 2013.

Setting Description:
Cape Town- University of Cape Town:
In Cape Town, you will stay in a dorm of the University of Cape Town. All rooms are singles with bookshelves, desks, chests of drawers, a wardrobe, and a sink. There are no clothes hangers, so be prepared to buy some when you get there if you need them. Bathrooms are shared, dorm-style. You will have access to the University Recreation Hall, Tennis and Swimming Pool, Library and Computer Labs. Three meals a day are included. There is also a small kitchen on each floor of the dorms if you would like to prepare a meal or snack for yourself.

Edeni Game Reserve:
Edeni Bush Lodge is a basic camp where you will stay two persons per deluxe tent. Each tent is furnished with two twin-size beds, cupboards, en-suite shower, basin and toilet and a viewing deck. There is a swimming pool and lodge on-site. Three meals a day are provided.

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