South Sudan is a country in Africa. Formerly a breakaway region of Sudan, it became an independent country on 9 July 2011 after a referendum was held in January that year. It borders Sudan, Ethiopia, Uganda, Kenya, Democratic Republic of the Congo, and the Central African Republic.
South Sudan had been home of semi-nomadic cattle herding peoples for most of its history. Its formal ownership has changed hands from the Egyptians, Ottomans, British and Sudanese. After half a century of ethno-religious conflict South Sudan legally seceded from Sudan on 9 July 2011.
Since South Sudan is located near the Equator in the tropics, much of its landscape consists of tropical rainforest. South Sudan also has extensive swamp and grassland regions.
The White Nile, a main tributary of the Nile River, also passes through the country.
The highest point in South Sudan is Kinyeti at 10,456 feet (3,187 m).
South Sudanese culture varies by ethnicity. Zande, a Bantu people, will have very different language, legend and dance from the Shilluk, a Nilotic people.
English and Arabic (Juba Arabic) are the official languages and lingua francas of South Sudan, they are used in business, education and cross ethnic communication. Of the traditional languages Dinka is the most widely spoken language closely followed by Nuer. Jur Modo, Bari, Chollo/Shilluk, and Zande are also spoken there.
Most traditional languages are non-standard macro-languages, variations in dialect and accent are significant so universal intelligibility should not be assumed.
As South Sudan achieved independence only recently, the immigration rules are still subject to change. To board an aircraft to South Sudan you must have a visa from a South Sudan Embassy or an entry letter issued by Immigration in Juba, south sudan. The visa cost $100 usd the entry letter cost $42 usd. If you have an entry letter then upon arrival at Juba Intl airport you must buy a regular visa for $100 usd.
Most airlines flying into Juba depart from Cairo (Egypt), Addis Ababa (Ethiopia), Entebbe (Uganda) or Nairobi (Kenya) Khartoum (Sudan) to/from where you should be able to manage flights to Europe, Asia or the Americas. Flydubai has flights from Dubai to Juba.
South Sudan has a rainy season witch lasts from may to November. The rainy season massively limits roads and other transportation due to south Sudan's roads being dirt tracks and in the rainy season they turn into mud tracks. The only paved roads South Sudan has are in major cities like Juba and Rumbek. The 190 Kilometers from Nimule on the Ugandan Border to Juba has recently been paved. Work is underway to upgrade the road from Juba to Bor.
Safaris to Boma National Park and Nimule National Park. See the parks by 4x4 vehicle or aircraft. See the greatest migration of mammals on the earth in Boma National Park. Contact the following companies for safaris: Bahr El Jebel Safaris, Middle Africa Safaris, Nile Safaris
Most South Sudanese is very similar to Sudanese cuisine. Restaurants for both international and local cuisine can be found in Juba and other major city centers.
The drinking/purchasing age of alcoholic beverages is 18.
A Brewery has opened up in Juba, providing the country with Nile Beer.
Fresh fruit juices are available throughout Sudan. One of the local juices is "aradeab"(tamarind).
Starting in August 2012, Sudan and South Sudan have been fighting along the border of the two countries and traveling to the Sudan-South Sudan border is very dangerous and highly discouraged! Please be very careful while you are traveling in this area, so you do not get injured or killed. DO NOT EVEN THINK ABOUT going across the gated and secured border into Sudan. This is highly dangerous as well. Updated October 2012, due to continued violent disruptions journalist permits honored by Sudan are sporadically recognized as sufficient identification in South Sudan. Bribing is a possibility, but does not guarantee entry into South Sudan. Islamist groups such as Janjaweed also intermittently operate in the country.
A warning to LGBT travelers:
Homosexuality is ILLEGAL in South Sudan, as in the north. Men found having homosexual sex can be sentenced to up to 10 years imprisonment (Wikipedia: LGBT rights in South Sudan); the penalty for women is unknown (Wikipedia: LGBT rights in South Sudan). If you are gay or lesbian and thinking of travelling to South Sudan, you should take extreme precaution.
As with all countries a respect for the native culture is essential. Due to the multi-ethnic demography of South Sudan some people might take offense to being mistaken for others. It is best not assume a person speaks a particular language or hold particular custom which is representative of another ethnic groups.