Where is Zululand?

Sunrise over beach at Richards Bay in Zululand

Zululand is the focus of our popular webpage, a region of pulsating culture, fascinating history and beautiful people, wildlife reserves and untamed beaches.  A place we promote passionately, a place that has served us, our children and grandchildren well.

In future someone might query our understanding of towns and areas that form part of our Zululand.   Besides from a modern legislative view Zululand does not have distinct boundaries.

Zulu maidens in traditional animal hides

Municipality of Zululand

Legislatively Zululand is named as one of 11 district municipalities of the province of KwaZulu -Natal with the seat in Ulundi, incorporating Babanango.

The associated local municipalities included in this region are as follows:

  • eDumbe (Paulpietersburg)
  • Nongoma
  • uPhongola (Pongola)
  • Abaqaluis (Vryheid) – also incorporating eMondlo and Louwsburg.

Other regions in KwaZulu-Natal cannot boast a resident reigning monarch and a Royal Palace in Nongoma, home to King Goodwill.

EMakhosini, the Valley of the Kings, where King Shaka spent his childhood and established his Royal Residence. King Dingane and Cetshwayo resided here too, the latter defeated by the British Empire at Ulundi. We believe this area probably has the strongest claim to be called Zululand.

Male Zulu warriors re-enacting Battle of Isandlwana in Zululand

The Coastal Region of Zululand

Rightly or wrongly, we were always taught anything north of the Tugela River was Zululand. The river has long been a landmark or a border for those who reside here. The large concrete bridge above the majestic Tugela River on the N2 national highway we believe forms part of the boundary.

Sugar cane fields and timber plantations, rural communities and Nguni cattle scatter the hills. Although the vegetation changes northwards to more natural we claim all land from the Tugela River up to Swaziland and Kosi Bay as Zululand.

Herd of nguni cattle feeding on sugar cane in rolling hills of Zululand

This area also includes:

  • The World Heritage Site of iSimangaliso Wetland Park and the quaint coastal town of St. Lucia, the pristine beaches of Sodwana and Cape Vidal. Relax and cruise the Estuary.
  • The finest Big 5 game reserves in Africa, the world renowned Hluhluwe- iMfolozi reserve, Tembe Elephant Park and numerous more.
  • The Pongolapoort (Jozini Dam) – the most southern point in Africa where tiger fish are found.
  • Richards Bay harbour, an entry port for many passenger ocean liners.
Elephant Tusker at Tembe Elephant Park spraying body with dust from trunk

The Interior Westwards

Moving inland visitors are welcomed to Eshowe, Dundee and the battlefields region where many fierce battles took place between the Zulu’s, British Empire and Boers.

The Battle of Isandlwana, the first major encounter between the British Empire and Zulu Kingdom, is commemorated yearly. The most number of Victorian Crosses were awarded to the soldiers who partook in the battle at Rorke’s Drift. Visit the museum there and take yourself back to 1879.

Dundee Diehards in historical British Redcoat uniform and rifles marching at Talana Festival

Visiting the Fort Nongqayi Museum Village in Eshowe affords visitors an opportunity to experience the Zulu cultural way of life.

Last but not least we claim Eshowe, Dundee and its neighbour Nqutu.

With our proposal our aim is not to offend but rather to promote an area we love.  Upsetting people who reside in the land of wide smiles is not our intention.

Many foreign visitors only see Kruger National Park, Sun City and Cape Town as South Africa. Zululand is the precious hidden gem.