南非共和国（南非语：Republiek van Suid-Afrika，英语：Republic of South Africa），簡稱南非、斐，是一個位於非洲南部的国家，有“彩虹之国”之誉。南非是世界上独一无二的拥有三个首都的国家：行政首都（中央政府所在地）为比勒陀利亚，司法首都（最高法院所在地）为布隆方丹，立法首都（國會所在地）为开普敦。
The adult literacy rate in 2007 was 88.7%. South Africa has a 3 tier system of education starting with primary school, followed by high school and tertiary education in the form of (academic) universities and universities of technology. Learners have twelve years of formal schooling, from grade 1 to 12. Grade R is a pre-primary foundation year. Primary schools span the first seven years of schooling. High School education spans a further five years. The Senior Certificate examination takes place at the end of grade 12 and is necessary for tertiary studies at a South African university.
Public universities in South Africa are divided into three types: traditional universities, which offer theoretically oriented university degrees; universities of technology ("Technikons"), which offer vocational oriented diplomas and degrees; and comprehensive universities, which offer both types of qualification. There are 23 public universities in South Africa: 11 traditional universities, 6 universities of technology and 6 comprehensive universities.
Under apartheid, schools for blacks were subject to discrimination through inadequate funding and a separate syllabus called Bantu Education which was only designed to give them sufficient skills to work as labourers. In 2004 South Africa started reforming its higher education system, merging and incorporating small universities into larger institutions, and renaming all higher education institutions "university" to redress these imbalances. By 2015, 1.4 million students in higher education have benefited from a financial aid scheme which was promulgated in 1999.
South African culture is diverse; foods from many cultures are enjoyed by all and especially marketed to tourists who wish to sample the large variety of South African cuisine. In addition to food, music and dance feature prominently.
South African cuisine is heavily meat-based and has spawned the distinctively South African social gathering known as a braai, or barbecue. South Africa has also developed into a major wine producer, with some of the best vineyards lying in valleys around Stellenbosch, Franschhoek, Paarl and Barrydale.
The cuisine of South Africa is sometimes called "rainbow cuisine", as it has had a variety of multicultural sources and stages. The cuisine can be generalised as:
• Cookery practiced by indigenous people of Africa such as the Sotho- and Nguni-speaking people.
• Cookery that emerged from several waves of colonialisation and immigration introduced during the colonial period by white European people of Dutch (since 1652), German, French, Italian, Greek and British (since 1805~1820) descent and their Indo-Asian slaves or servants - this includes the cuisine of the so-called Cape Malay people, which has many characteristics of Indonesia and cooking styles from neighbouring colonial cultures such as Portuguese Mozambique.
South Africa has eleven official languages: Afrikaans, English, Ndebele, Northern Sotho, Sotho, Swazi, Tswana, Tsonga, Venda, Xhosa, and Zulu. In this regard it is third only to Bolivia and India in number. While all the languages are formally equal, some languages are spoken more than others. According to the 2011 census, the three most spoken first languages are Zulu (22.7%), Xhosa (16.0%), and Afrikaans (13.5%). Despite the fact that English is recognised as the language of commerce and science, it ranked fourth, and was listed as the first language of only 9.6% of South Africans in 2011.
The country also recognises several unofficial languages, including Fanagalo, Khoe, Lobedu, Nama, Northern Ndebele, Phuthi, and South African Sign Language. These unofficial languages may be used in certain official uses in limited areas where it has been determined that these languages are prevalent. Nevertheless, their populations are not such that they require nationwide recognition.
Many of the unofficial languages of the San and Khoikhoi people contain regional dialects stretching northwards into Namibia and Botswana, and elsewhere. These people, who are a physically distinct population from other Africans, have their own cultural identity based on their hunter-gatherer societies. They have been marginalised to a great extent, and the remainder of their languages are in danger of becoming extinct.
Many white South Africans also speak European languages, including Portuguese (also spoken by black Angolans and Mozambicans),German, and Greek, while some Asians in South Africa speak Asian languages, such as Tamil, Hindi, Gujarati, Urdu, and Telugu. French is spoken in South Africa by migrants from Francophone Africa.