About the KwaZulu-Natal Battlefields
Steeped in legend, the battlefields of KwaZulu-Natal echo the bygone glory of brave warriors and soldiers and their hard-fought military engagements. Walk in the footsteps of famous military strategists - Shaka, Winston Churchill, Mahatma Gandhi and General Louis Botha - all these men played a part in the history of the KwaZulu-Natal Battlefields. Today the legacy of these critical, blood-soaked conflicts lives peacefully within the battle sites, historic towns, national monuments and museums. With more recorded battlefi elds than anywhere else in Africa, this is the place to discover another facet of the Zulu Kingdom’s past. But if it’s more than legends that you’re looking for, the Battlefi elds region does not disappoint - the adventurous will enjoy white-water rafting down the mighty Thukela, or for a wildlife experience, visit the Ithala Game Reserve or the Nambiti Conservancy.
The Battlefields region is a comfortable three- to four hour drive by vehicle or coach from Durban, and is worth the journey as this is where history comes to life with stories of the Battles of Isandlwana, Rorke’s Drift and Blood River amongst others. A number of lodges and hotels in the Battlefi elds region offer outstanding battlefield tours, with knowledgeable guides available to talk visitors through the secrets and sorrows, strategies and despairs of these great battles. With many of these establishments offering facilities for small to medium sized conferences, meetings can easily be themed around battlefield lessons which can potentially be mirrored in the boardroom.
Incentive visitors to the region can get a taste of Zulu culture and heritage at the Talana Museum in Dundee. The Kwakunje Cultural Village, where visitors are invited to experience Zulu cultural life as it was and how it is changing. This cultural village is a living monument to Zulu culture and reflects the roots of traditional village culture as well asplacing it in its 21st century context. Hear the tales, explore the culture and enjoy traditional meals as you absorb the sounds and sights of life under the African sun. Listen and learn as this living village portrays Zulu culture and lifestyle, and as the live-in Zulu family explain customs, traditions, culture and their lifestyle to visitors.
Visitors to the Talana Creative Cluster will be able to interact with the crafters and in certain areas, be able to choose colours and patterns and work withthe producer, to make their own special product to take away with them. Conference delegates and incentive visitors will be able to experience weaving, beading, glassblowing, pottery, sewing, traditional plants, Zulu culture and lifestyle - traditional Zulu beading in a variety of fashions and in different applications and African pottery and crafts that reflect African traditions and heritage.
There are numerous activities for adventurous teambuilding; these include white-water rafting down the rapids of the mighty Thukela, or kloofing if the river level is low, hiking or mountain-biking in the magnifi cent Drakensberg Mountains, or even horseback riding in the hoof prints of Victorian soldiers. Other more relaxed corporate pursuits include a round of golf on one of the 9- and 18-hole courses or trout fishing in the cool waters near Newcastle.