Engaging with South Africa’s people and their cultures

10 November 2016

Hear the beat of a Zulu drum and the ululating of dancing Xhosa maidens. Feast on a traditional African braai. Explore the history of their freedom struggle. Visit Venda's sacred sites, or quench your thirst with a traditional African beer. These are just some of the culture and heritage aspects of this great country worth exploring.

South Africans are a diverse group and there is no one particular way to define the beauty and complexity of South African culture and heritage.

South Africa offers a cultural immersion that is both fascinating and insightful. It can open one's eyes to different ways of doing things, or to new insights into corporate structures, conflict resolution and leadership styles.

We invite you to explore through South African culture and heritage the essence of who they are - whether it's following a Hindu procession down Durban's streets during the Diwali festival, meeting a sangoma (traditional healer) at a traditional cultural village, or learning all about kwaito (African house music) at a local township shebeen.

There are many cultural and historical sites providing insights into the fascinating past - from Cape Dutch and Cape Malay heritage, the Gold Rush trail in Mpumalanga, the battlefields of KwaZulu-Natal - where the Zulu tribe defeated the British Empire - to Robben Island where Nelson Mandela and other great leaders of South Africa's liberation struggle were incarcerated.

You can take a township tour to Soweto, Alexandra or Kyaelitsha; visit the sacred sites of Venda, where you can learn about sacred fossils and python gods; taste chisa nyama  for the first time followed with traditional African beer; imbibe the ancient history of the Mapungubwe Cultural Landscape; explore their Freedom Struggle history; visit the outdoor art galleries of the Ndebele; shop for spices in Durban's busy Victoria Street; attend an Afrikaans music festival; and trace your DNA at the Origins Centre in Johannesburg.

Cultural tours are popular and there are a wide variety of options from Basotho cultural villages, to the Zulu, Xhosa, Shangaan, Pedi, and Ndebele villages. Here you can experience colourfully decorated mud and dung thatched huts; women adorned with beadwork grinding maize; singing, dancing and drumming; and folklore around a campfire with traditional foods. 

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