The largest ethnic group in South Sudan, the Dinka population exceeds 1.5 million (approximately 10% of all South Sudanese); they are an agro-pastoralist tribe whose livelihood is dependent on herding cattle.
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In South Sudan, tens of thousands of kob may come together in their annual migration, which extends over a route of some 1,600km and is dictated by the variation in rainfall and flooding from year to year.
South Sudan’s stunning birdlife is best appreciated with a boat trip on the Sudd, one of the largest wetlands in the world; there’s also some excellent fishing.
Traditional South Sudanese wrestling is an energetic affair where the wrestlers are stripped to the waist and egged on by an enthusiastic crowd of spectators; Bor is a great place to see the fighters in action.
Juba is an international city: in just a decade it has grown from a shell-damaged garrison town to a buzzing capital and is one of the 20 most expensive cities on earth.
The bodaboda (or simply boda) is a bicycle taxi. Having started out in Kenya in the 1960s, they’re now a common sight across East Africa and, unlike a three-wheeled rickshaw, the bodaboda has just two wheels: it is essentially still a bicycle. It’s a cheap way to get around South Sudan’s cities.
The largest of several hornbills in South Sudan, the Abyssinian ground hornbill (Bucorvus abyssinicus) is a turkey-sized ground bird with black plumage and a crimson, naked face and throat pouch.
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In January 2011, More than 98% of South Sudanese voted for secession from the north, and Salva Kiir was sworn in as the fi rst president of the newly independent South Sudan in July 2011; pictured: boys waving the South Sudanese flag on Independence Day.
A village in Eastern Equatoria: this region lies in the southeast of South Sudan and borders Ethiopia, Kenya and Uganda, as well as the disputed territory of the Ilemi Triangle.
Roughly the same size as France, and a little smaller than Texas, the landlocked Republic of South Sudan draws its lifeblood from the White Nile and its tributaries.
White-water rafting on the Nile is a new addition to South Sudan’s tourist options, and you can enjoy a short splash at Nimule or paddle all the way to Juba.
The vervet monkey (Cercopithecus aethiops) is a common species of savannah habitats, with a grey coat, black face and prominent white brow. Troops forage by day in the trees or on the ground for fruit, seeds and leaves.
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The Nuer are often visually distinctive as a result of the practice of gaar, or facial scarification. The pattern of scars differs between sub-groups, and dotted patterns are popular among women.
Toposa culture is transmitted orally through music, poetry and storytelling, as well as through dance; pictured: a Toposa chief in Kapoeta during a traditional dance performance.
Visitors typically flock to Boma National Park, a vast site of nearly 23,000km2 near to the Ethiopian border. Established in 1977, it runs parallel to Ethiopia’s Gambela National Park, enabling large numbers of elephant (pictured), giraffe and zebra to roam across the frontier.
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A wide range of vegetables, spices and pulses are available in the marketplace, many of them grown locally, and during the seasons, markets also sell juicy pineapples, papayas (pawpaw) and oranges, apples, guava and avocados.
At the Dinka cattle camp in Bor, there are at least 500 cows at any one time, and they’re tended to by young boys from the tribe.
Bee-eaters have a long tail, long curved beak and are extremely agile in flight as they chase bees and other insect prey, making repeated sallies from a favorite perch; pictured: little bee-eater.
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The local population of South Sudan is divided into nearly 80 ethnic groups and speaks more than 60 indigenous languages. While some of these communities have urbanised, exchanging their cattle for cars and round grass huts (pictured) for modern apartments, they are by no means the majority.
Almost half the waters of Africa’s mightiest river, the White Nile, are lost into South Sudan’s swamps, the largest of which – the Sudd – covers 15% of the country’s total land area.