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Mpumalanga (East or the place where the sun rises in Swazi, Xhosa, Ndebele and Zulu) name was changed from Eastern Transvaal in August 1995. Before 1994, Mpumalanga was part of Transvaal Province.
Situated eastern South Africa , north it borders of Limpopo, to the west Gauteng, to the southwest the Free State and to the south KwaZulu-Natal, and bordering Swaziland and Mozambique. Mpumalanga is sized at 76 495 km2 which constitutes 6.5% of South Africa's land area. Its capital is Nelspruit (recently renamed to Mbombela). With a population of 4,229,300 (7.8% of the South African population), Mpumalanga contributes 7% of the South Africa’s GDP with its R187.4 billion Gross Regional Product. Of the provincial population, 27.7% speaks siSwati, 24.1% isiZulu, 10.4% Xistonga and10.1% isiNdebele.
Mpumalanga is popular with tourists from all around the world. The Kruger National Park, established in 1898 for the protection of Lowveld wildlife, covering 20,000 km2 , being their popular destination. The other major tourist attractions include the Sudwala Caves and the Blyde River Canyon.
The Drakensberg cliff divides Mpumalanga into a westerly half consisting mainly of high-altitude grassland called the Highveld and an eastern half situated in low altitude subtropical Lowveld/Bushveld, mostly savanna habitat. Most places with this central region of Mpumalanga are very mountainous.