South Africa: First On My Bucket List

One country that has been on my bucket list for as long as I can remember is South Africa. What attracted my firstly was the Zulu People and their beautiful personalities. After watching one episode of an eight part documentary on kingdoms of Africa late one Saturday, I was immediately amazed. Their customs, beliefs, family life and traditions have to up among some of the most fascinating tribes there is.

This ethnic group happens to be the largest in South Africa, they are evenly distributed in both urban and rural areas. Regardless of where they live all individuals share really amazing traditions and qualities that I believe should be incorporated into any individual’s daily life no matter where you are on the map. The Zulu people are truly fascinating; their colourful clothing, culture and customs brighten South Africa.

Watching ‘The Kingdoms Of Africa’ and doing extensive reading on this stunning country has shown me that family and community is at the heart of the Zulu culture. They all typically live together in a household that contains nuclear family members or in a three-generation household structure – imagine that! Children depend on their parents as long as they are not married. Each family member has allocated jobs. The Zulus live quite basically in houses called rondavel or circular like buildings of mud or concrete blocks thatched with grass or iron sheets.

Poverty is very evident among these people – they don’t share riches of money or possessions but love, joy, happiness and togetherness. This can been really seen during Shaka Day. Shaka Day is very import to all members of the tribe. This is held annually on the 24th of September to remember the famous founder of the Zulu Kingdom, Shaka. They honor Shaka as he is the man who used his spear to put together a diverse collection of tribes and clans into the one massive cultural quilt like it is today.

During Shaka Day, all members of the tribe wear their full traditional attire which includes the weapons too and gather at KwaDukuza in Stanger, where Shaka’s tombstone is. The celebrations are known all over for their colourful quality. This event is also marked by poets singing the praises of all the Zulu kings starting with Shaka down to the current king, followed by traditional tribal dances by men, women and children. I would love to attend this annual event as these people really know how to party and celebrate their heritage in style. During this day they showed me that despite their poverty and scarceness they have many great qualities within their tribe like sense of history, one that is exciting and gives each person a sense of dignity and belonging.

If you were interested in my blog post you can get more information on The Zulu People from watching The Kingdoms Of Africa: Zulu Kingdom.Here is a short clip showing they tribal dances they would perform on Shaka Day.


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