South African Attractions, Events and Things to do - Contact South Africa Explorer - Advertise on South Africa Explorer

Find South African Attractions

South Africa Guinness World Records

South Africans (and the country itself) has earned many Guinness Records over the years. The Guinness World Records is the universally recognized authority on record-breaking achievement.

Enjoy the list of South African Guiness Records!

Oldest active commercial pilot

Who: Reginald Thomas Weaver
When: 23 Mar 2006

The world record for the oldest active commercial pilot was set by Reginald Thomas Weaver (South Africa, b. 12 October 1932) a qualified commercial pilot since 1957. As of March 2006 he continues to fly and has completed over 6500 hours of flight.

Most surfers riding the same wave

Who: Kahuna Promotions
When: 04 Oct 2009

The record for the most surfers riding the same wave simultaneously is 110, in an event organised by Kahuna Promotions, at Muizenberg Beach, Cape Town, South Africa on 4 October 2009.

The attempt was made in conjunction with the Earthwave Beach Festival, to raise awareness of climate change.

Most steel cans collected in one month

Who: Collect-a-Can
When: 31 Oct 2010

The most steel cans collected in one month is 2,656,284, weighing 82,929 kg (182,827 lb 2 oz) and was achieved by Collect-a-Can (South Africa) in South Africa, between 1-31 October 2010.

Collect-a-Can first attempted this record in 2007, and has broken their own records twice since. Collections occurred at schools across the country for the month of October to promote the recylcing of cans in South Africa.

Most stationary engines running simultaneously

Who: Vaal Old Wheels
When: 02 Sep 2007

The record for most stationary engines running simultaneously is 205 and was hosted by Vaal Old Wheels Motor Club during the annual Chevrolet Wheels at the Vaal Festival held at North West University, Vanderbijlpark, South Africa on 2 September 2007.

All engines were at least 25 years old and ran together for the full 5 minutes period.

Tallest swing

Who: B!g Rush
When: 14 May 2011

The tallest swing measures 88 m (288 ft 8 in) from the seat to the top of the cross bar and was constructed by B!g Rush (South Africa) in Durban, South Africa, on 14 May 2011.

The swing was installed in the Moses Mabhida Stadium, where it was attached to the roof. Participants could swing from a platform across the football ground. For safety reasons the swings seat was 9 metres above the ground.

Smallest ostrich living (height)

Who: Pawel Kanigowski
When: 15 Jul 2011

The smallest ostrich living (height) is 127 cm tall (50 inches), achieved by Tom Thumb, an adult male African ostrich (South Africa) based at the Cape Town Ostrich ranch, Cape Town, South Africa, on 15 July 2011

Tom Thumb is fully grown and measures 57cm from ground to the patella when standing and 51cm from base of neck to base of head ie: length of neck. The average male ostrich is usually 1.8 - 2.7 meters / 6 - 9 feet tall, while female ostriches are 1.7 - 2 meters / 5.5 - 6.5 ft tall.

Smallest commercially available stitched teddy bear

Who: Cheryl Moss

The smallest commercially available stitched teddy bear measures 9 mm (0.29 in) and was made by Cheryl Moss (South Africa).

Cheryl has been making and selling 'Microbears' for 6 years in specialist teddy bear stores. Microbears range from 9 mm to 13 mm in size.

Rarest chameleon

Who: Smith’s dwarf chameleon (Bradypodion taeniabronchum)
When: 01 Jan 2010

The world´s rarest chameleon is Smith´s dwarf chameleon (Bradypodion taeniabronchum). Classed as Critically Endangered by the IUCN, it is limited to an area not exceeding 5,850 km² (2,258 mi2), within which its area of occupancy is estimated as 400 km² (154 mi2) near Algoa Bay in South Africa.

Oldest regular blood donor

Who: Maurice Creswick
When: 12 May 2010

Maurice Creswick (South Africa, b. 25 April 1926) began donating blood on his 18th birthday in 1944. On 12 May 2010 Mr Creswick donated his 380th unit (171 litres; 37.6 gal; 45 US gal) of whole blood aged 84 years 17 days and continues to do so regularly.

Oldest polo player

Who: Harold Smith
When: 12 Sep 2004

The oldest competitive polo player is Harold Smith (SA) aged 75 years 3 days old who took part in the South African Club Championships in Bloemfontein, South Africa on 12 September 2004.

Oldest person to grow a wisdom tooth

Who: Tim Louw
When: 29 Jan 2003

An X-ray photo revealed that Timotheus Louw (South Africa, b. 27 June 1922) was growing a wisdom tooth in his top left gum at the age of 80 years 216 days on 29 January 2003. The new tooth was originally thought to have been a splinter.

Oldest bungee jumper

Who: Mohr Keet
When: April 2010

The oldest person to bungee jump is Mohr Keet (b. 31 August 1913, South Africa) who completed latest jump when he was 96 years old at Blaukrans Bungee CC, South Africa, on 10 April 2010.

He was unaware that he had broken a world record until after his jump.

Most screening hearing tests carried out in 8 hours - single venue

Who: Life Healthcare Group
When: 11 Sep 2009

The most screening hearing tests carried out in 8 hours at a single venue was 494 and was achieved at Life Fourways Hospital in Johannesburg, South Africa, on 11 September 2009.

The event was organised by Life Healthcare Group and South African Association of Audiologists. Total of 500 people registered to participate in the attempt.

Most sarcomas excised from a patient

Who: Cecil Max Weintraub
When: 01 Jan 2001

From 1977 – 2001, a total of 1,674 sarcomas were excised under local anaesthesia from the skin of a male patient (UK) by Dr Cecil Weintraub (South Africa). Found on different parts of the body surface, the most removed in a single month were 50 in December of 1989, and in a single year were 158 in 1993.

Sarcomas are cancers of the supporting tissues of the body. They can occur in muscle, fat, blood vessels or in any of the other tissues that support, surround and protect the organs of the body.

Most runners in an ultra marathon

Who: Comrades Marathon Association
When: 30 May 2010

The most runners in an ultra marathon is 14,343 and was achieved by participants of the Comrades Marathon, which is an event organised by the Comrades Marathon Association (South Africa), and was run on a route from Pietermaritzburg to Durban, South Africa, on 30 May 2010.

The distance of the marathon was 89.28 km. The number of entries accepted for the event was 23,568. Entrants had to show they qualified for the Comrades by running a race of not less than 42.2km in less than 5 hours. As it transpired, 16,480 runners started the race and 14, 343 completed it. They used Championship Timing System to track the times.

Most people in a human-soft toy chain

Who: Jaco Breyl
When: 29 Aug 2008

The most people in a human-soft toy chain included 2,623 people each with a soft toy and was achieved in an event organised by the JJ van der Merwe Primary School in Ermelo, South Africa, on 29 August 2008.

The event was organized in support of children who have been raped or molested.

Most official languages (country)

Who: South Africa

The country with the most official languages is the Republic of South Africa with 11. These are: English, Afrikaans, isiZulu, isiXhosa, Sesotho, Setswana, Sepedi, Xitsonga, siSwati, isiNdebele and Tshivenda. The population of South Africa is 43,792,000 (2001).

India has 18 languages that are recognised by its constitution and can be considered as official, however the difference is that each language is recognised as the official language of a certain area e.g Kashmiri in Kashmir. The overall official language is Hindi, and this is what all central government decrees are written in, along with English. English is not considered an official language of the country, but rather a 'second language'.

These languages (and area) are: Assamese (Assam), Bengali (West Bengal), Gujarati (Gujarat), Hindi (Bihar, Chandigarh, Delhi, Madhya Pradesh, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh), Kannada (Karnataka), Kashmiri, Malayalam (Kerala), Manipuri, Marathi (Maharashtra), Nepali, Oriya (Orissa), Punjabi (Punjab), Sanskrit, Sindhi, Tamil (Tamil Nadu), Telugu (Andhra Pradesh), Urdu (Kashmir and Jammu), Konkani.

Most people blowing the vuvuzela simultaneously

Who: Vodacom
When: 23 Jul 2009

The record for the most vuvuzelas blown simultaneously was achieved by 12,511 spectators at the Vodacom Challenge soccer match at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium in Port Elizabeth, South Africa, on 23 July 2009.

The event was organised as part of the Vodacom Challenge football tournament before a match between the Orlando Pirates and the Kaizer Chiefs at the new (built for WC 2010) Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium. 300 volunteers were used as marshalls to do the counting and the Kaizer Chiefs won the game on penalties after it finished 1-1 at full time (no extra time).

Most people with spray painted hair - single location

Who: Vodacom Sprayathon
When: 26 Aug 2006

The most people with spray painted hair in a single location was 4,784 at the Vodacom Sprayathon held at the Vodacom Tri-Nations game between South Africa and New Zealand at Loftus Versveld Stadium, Pretoria, South Africa on 26 August 2006.

Largest picnic blanket

Who: Waitrose
When: 01 Apr 2008

The largest picnic blanket measured 1,760 m² (18,944.41 ft²); it was woven at the Melin Tregwynt Mill in Wales, UK, for Waitrose Ltd and was laid out for the first time in Durban, South Africa, in April 2008.

Largest impact crater (earth)

Who: South Africa

Of the roughly 150 impact craters identified so far on Earth, the largest is the Vredefort crater, near Johannesburg, South Africa, with an estimated diameter of around 300 km (186 miles). This huge, eroded structure was formed around two billion years ago, when an asteroid or comet collided with the Earth.

Largest human mobile

Who: South Africa
When: 03 Nov 2007

The largest human mobile was made up of 105 people from Target Cranes, The Stunt Company, Bellville Fire Dept. and the Fire Brigade of Boland Mun, in the grounds of Horizon House, Stellenbosch, South Africa on 3 November 2007.

* The oldest participant was 71 years old. * The lowest point of the mobile was 98 metres above the ground.

Largest gathering of pregnant women

Who: Exposure Marketing & Communication
When: 24 May 2007

The largest gathering of pregnant women was achieved by 1,164 participants at the "Your Baby" show at the Coca Cola Dome in Johannesburg, South Africa, on 17 May 2007.

Largest donation of pet food in one week

Who: Foto Fanatique Fuji Film Sunward Shopping Centre
When: 07 Sep 2006

The most pet food donated in seven days weighed 5,901.8 kg (13,011 lb 3 oz) and was collected between 1-7 September 2006 at the Pick 'n' Pay Supermarket in Boksburg, South Africa, before being donated to the Boksburg SPCA. The event was organised by Foto Fanatique Fuji Film.

Largest football sculpture

Who: Telkom
When: 22 Sep 2009

The largest football sculpture measured 24 metres in diameter and was created by Telkom (South Africa) on top of a broadcast tower. The sculpture was measured in Tshwane, Pretoria, South Africa, on 22 September 2009.

The sculpture is attached to the outside of the tower and is made from steel and fiberglass.

Largest cycling race

Who: Cape Argus Pick 'n Pay Cycle Tour
When: 14 Mar 2004

The largest cycling race contained 31,219 finishers and was the 2004 Cape Argus Pick 'n Pay Cycle Tour in Cape Town, South Africa, on 14 March 2004. The race featured 42,614 entrants.

The tour had humble beginnings, with only 525 entrants and 446 finishers in its inaugural 1978 running. The 2011 edition of the race capped the number of entrants at 35,000.

Largest bubblegum mosaic

When: 17 Aug 2004

The largest mosaic of wrapped bubblegums measured 19.4 m² (209 ft²) and was created by TBWA Digerati and ID Productions in association with SABC 1 and Cadbury's Chappies in Johannesburg, South Africa on 17 August 2004.

The mosaic, which took five days to complete, was made of approximately 100,000 Chappies bubblegums and was a portrait of Nelson Mandela.

Largest bowl of cereal

Who: Kelogg's South Africa
When: 02 Jul 2007

The world's largest bowl of cereal weighed 1,000 kg (2204 lb 10 oz)and was made in a bowl measuring 2.6 m (8 ft 6 in) in diameter and 1.5 m (4 ft 11 in) in height. The record was made by Kellogg's South Africa, Sync Communications and Automatic in Johannesburg, South Africa on 2 July 2007.

The cereal was Kellog's cornflakes and the bowl weighed 259.5 kg (572 lb 1 oz).

Karting - greatest distance in 48 hours outdoors (individual)

Who: Myk Prescott
When: 05 Sep 2010

The greatest distance karting in 48 hours by an individual was 2,009 km (1,248 mi) by Myk Prescott (South Africa) at the Zwartkops International Kart Circuit in Pretoria, South Africa, from 3 to 5 September 2010. Prescott completed 2,009 laps of the 1 km track to add to his record collection - he had set the record for karting distance in 24 hours two years earlier.

First female to be First Lady of more than one country

Who: Graca Machel
When: 01 Jan 1998

Graca Machel was married to Samora Machel (1933-86), President of Mozambique from 1975 to 1986. President Machel was killed in a plane crash on 19 October 1986. On 18 July 1998 she married Nelson Mandela, President of South Africa, making her the first woman to be `First Lady' of two different countries.

Largest stamp mosaic

Who: South African Post Office
When: 13 Oct 2010

The largest stamp mosaic measured 162 m² (1,743 ft²), and was created by a joint group of volunteers from the South African Post Office and the Hatfield Tuition College (South Africa), at the Tshwane Events Centre, Pretoria, South Africa, between 12 September and 12 October 2010.

The mosaic contained approximately 120,000 stamps, 800 m? (8,611 ft?) of wood, 130 litres (28.3 gal) of glue, 20 kg (44 lb) of screws and nails, 20 litres (4.4 gal) of varnish. 115 volunteers contributed to the mosaic.

First heart transplant operation

Who: Louis Washkansky
When: 03 Dec 1967

The first successful heart transplant operation was performed by Prof. Christiaan Neethling Barnard (South Africa, 1922 - 2001) and a team of 30 physicians on Louis Washkansky (South Africa), at the Groote Schuur Hospital, Cape Town, South Africa ,between 1 a.m. and 6 a.m. on 3 December 1967. The donor was Denise Ann Darvall (South Africa), aged 25. Washkansky survived for 18 days with the new heart.

Largest speed dating event

Who: 5FM
When: 14 Feb 2011

The largest speed dating event consisted of 435 participants and was organised by 5FM (South Africa) at Clapham Gold Night Club in Johannesburg, South Africa, on 14 February 2011.

Chevrolet was a sponsor of the event and many of the dates took place inside their new Spark vehicle. Witness statements give a total of 437 but only 435 confirmed entries were in the logbook with corresponding evaluation sheet.

Largest rabbit made of chocolate

Who: Duracell South Africa
When: 19 Mar 2010

The largest rabbit made of chocolate weighed 3,010 kg (6,635 lb 91 oz) and was made by Duracell South Africa in Sandton City, Gauteng, South Africa, on 19 March 2010.

The chocolate Easter bunny measured a height of 3.8m (12 ft) and was sculpted in under 3 days and was made by a team of 4 people in time for the Easter celebrations.

Largest bar of soap

Who: Unilever South Africa Home & Personal Care
When: 12 Aug 2005

The largest bar of soap measured 4.1 m × 2.5 m × 1.4 m (13.4 ft × 8.2 ft × 4.5 ft) and weighed 12.5 tons (27,557 lb). It was made by Unilever South Africa Home & Personal Care at their factory in Durban, South Africa and completed on 12 August 2005.

The soap is a replica of Unilever's Vaseline bath bar.

First use of fire by humans

Who: Swartkrans, Free State, South Africa
When: 01 Jan 2010

The earliest use of fire by humans has been traced back approximately 1.5 million years to locations in East Africa.

Largest sculpture made of soap

Who: Protex Soap
When: 05 Oct 2010

The largest soap sculpture measures 2.19 x 2.07 x 2.68 m (7.19 x 6.79 x 8.80 ft) and was created by Protex Soap (South Africa) in Johannesburg, South Africa, on 5 October 2010.

The sculpture represents a globe held by two hands.

Largest pizza

Who: Norwood Hypermarket
When: 08 Dec 1990

The largest pizza ever baked weighed 12.19 tonnes (26,883 lb) and was made at Norwood Hypermarket, Norwood, South Africa on 8 December 1990.

The pizza measured 37.4m (122ft 8in)in diameter.

Busiest morgue

Who: Salt River Morgue
When: 01 Jan 1998

The Salt River Morgue, Cape Town, South Africa, handled more than 30,000 cadavers in 1998. Almost 4,000 of these dead bodies have untraceable identities and are often the victims of violent crime. All cadavers undergo an autopsy and the nameless corpses are buried in plots marked with numbers.

Deepest scuba dive (female)

Who: Verna van Schaik
When: 25 Oct 2004

Verna van Schaik (South Africa) dived to a depth of 221 m (725 ft) in the Boesmansgat cave in South Africa's Northern Cape province on 25 October 2004. The dive lasted 5 hr 34 mins, of which only 12 minutes were spent descending.

Farthest flight by a paraglider by a team of two

Who: Richard Westgate
When: 07 Dec 2006

The greatest distance flown in a tandem paraglider without landing is 356.2 km (221.3 miles), by Richard Westgate and Phillip Bibby from Vosburg to Krompoort Farm, South Africa, on 7 December 2006.

Largest vuvuzela

Who: Hyundai Automotive South Africa
When: 26 May 2010

The largest vuvuzela is 35 metres (114 ft 9 in) long and 5.5 metres (18 ft) in diameter at the front. It was created by Hyundai Automotive South Africa and was presented and measured in Cape Town, South Africa, on 26 May 2010.

The vuvuzela is sounded before each match of the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa.

Longest barbecue marathon

Who: Gareth Daniell
When: 26 Aug 2012

The longest barbecue marathon is 62 hours 6 mins and was achieved by Gareth Daniell (South Africa) in association with Spar and Deli Spices (South Africa) at SuperSport Park, in Centurion, Pretoria, South Africa, on 26 August 2012.

Longest line of telephones

Who: LifeLine Port Elizabeth
When: 29 Nov 2008

The longest line of telephones consists of 3,152 telephones, is 449.82 m (1,475 ft 9 in) long and was achieved by the counselling association LifeLine to raise awareness about the frequency of suicides at the Van Stadens Bridge, known as "bridge of death" in Port Elizabeth, South Africa, on 29 November 2008.

Longest kebab

Who: ArcelorMittal
When: 18 Oct 2008

The longest kebab measures 2047.47 m (1.27 miles) and was achieved by the ArcelorMittal Newcastle Works on occasion of the company's annual Community Day, in Newcastle, South Africa, on 17 October 2008.

Longest marathon, punch-bag

Who: Tom Varley
When: 24 Jul 2010

The longest punch bag marathon lasted 38 hr 00 min by Tom Varley (UK) at the Canal Walk Shopping Centre in Cape Town, South Africa, on 23-24 July 2010.

Varley used his attempt to raise funds to fight autism.

Longest salad bar

Who: Nola Mayonnaise
When: 02 Feb 2002

The longest continuous salad bar was constructed by Nola Mayonnaise (South Africa) and measured 201.2 m (660.10 ft). The salad bar was displayed at the Kyalami Exhibition and Conference Centre, Johannesburg, South Africa on 2 February 2002.

The total weight of the salad bar was 2,0635 kg (4,548.13 lb). The ingredients consisted of 375 kg (826.73 lb) of cucumber, 200 kg (440.92 lb) onions, 455 kg (1,003.10 lb) tomatoes, 975 kg (2,149.50 lb) lettuce and 58.5 kg (128.97 lb) Nola Big Squeeze salad dressing.

Longest Sausage Roll

Who: King Pie Holdings
When: 25 Jun 2005

The record for the longest sausage roll is 111.11 m (364 ft 6.4 in) and was achieved by King Pie in Faerie Glen, South Africa on 25 June 2005.

Most ballet kicks

Who: Jeanne-Carlin Cilliers
When: 05 Mar 2005

Jeanne-Carlin Cilliers (South Africa) performed 1,199 continuous grand battements alternating legs, at the Virgin Active Club, Kimberley, Northern Cape, South Africa on 5 March 2005.

The exercise is where the working leg is raised from the hip into the air and brought down again with both knees kept straight. This must be done with apparent ease, the rest of the body remaining quiet. Grands battements can be taken devant, derrière and à la seconde.

Largest wine cellar

Who: Koöperatiewe Wijnbouwers Vereniging

The cellars at Paarl of the Koöperatiewe Wijnbouwers Vereniging, known as KWV, in Cape Province, in the centre of the wine-growing district of South Africa, cover an area of 22 ha (54 acres) and have a capacity of 121 million litres (27 million gal).

Largest yoghurt pot

Who: Fair Cape Dairies
When: 30 Jan 2010

The largest pot of yoghurt is 1.38 m (4 ft 6.33 in) tall, has a diameter of 0.92 m (3 ft 0.22 in) and contained 514 litres of Rooibos yoghurt prepared by Fair Cape Dairies in Killarney Gardens, Cape Town, South Africa, on 30 January 2010.

The combined weight of the yogurt and the tub was 544 kg (1,199 lb). The tub was manufactured by Andy Cab, a South African injection moulding engineering company.

Longest journey pushing a soapbox cart

Who: NICRO Race Against Crime and Time 2001
When: 06 Oct 2001

Thirty pupils from the Laerskool Laeveld school in Nelspruit, South Africa, pushed an unpowered soapbox cart a distance of 2,061 km (1,280 miles ) between Komatipoort and Cape Town, South Africa, from 17 September to 6 October 2001, in the NICRO Race Against Crime and Time.

NICRO is an anti-crime initiative

Most bungee jumps in 24 hours

Who: Kevin Scott Huntly
When: 08 May 2011

The most bungee jumps in 24 hours is 105 and was achieved by Kevin Scott Huntly (South Africa) during an event sponsored by Ferrum Crescent Limited in partnership with Face Adrenaline (South Africa) at the Bloukrans Bungy Bridge, Garden Route, South Africa, on 8 May 2011.

Scott Huntly performed 105 jumps in only 7 hours and 42 minutes. He jumped at a speed of one jump every 4 and a half minutes. He used a 40 meters (131 ft 3 in) bungee cord stretching 3 times its size for a total freefall of at least 120 meters each time. The Bloukrans bungee bridge is 216 meters high (708 ft 8 in) and it is one of the highest commercial bungee jump facilities in the world.

Most lipstick applications in one hour

Who: Bertha Le Roux-Wahl
When: 02 Mar 2012

The most lipstick applications in one hour is 535, achieved by Bertha Le Roux-Wahl (South Africa) on behalf of Finesse magazine and Revlon, at Pretoria, South Africa, on 2 March 2012.

The record was attempted in order to raise funds for the Red Cross Memorial Children's Hospital in Cape Town.

Most juice extracted from grapes by treading in two minutes (team)

Who: Ryno van Zyl
When: 06 Mar 2004

Gabriel Jonker and Ryno van Zyl (both South Africa) trod 50 kg (110 lb) of grapes in two minutes, resulting in 21.17 litres (37.25 pints) of juice being extracted at the WHOOSH festival, Worcester, Western Cape, South Africa on 6 March 2004.