Sangoma Archives - Tim Brown Tours
  • 11th February 2016

    Durban Tours

     

     

    It was a warm morning in Durban for our Durban tour to Tala game reserve and the Valley of 1000 Hills for a Zulu cultural village visit.

    My clients were aboard the Sun Princess and we began once they disembarked with a briefing on what was to be expected for the day.

    As we made our way west of Durban city I began with the tour from Durban covering some of the interesting history of the area around the City and then the suburbs of Durban.

    We took the scenic route into the Valley of 1000 hills and then arrived at Phezulu safari park for the Zulu cultural village tour where we would meet the Sangoma and enjoy some Traditional Zulu dancing.

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban tour; Zulu Sangoma

    Durban tour; Zulu Sangoma

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    We tried to stay clear of the ship groups as best we could so after the dancing I gathered my small group and entered into one of the Zulu huts and told my clients about this amazing group of people and how they traditionally lived.

    The actual Zulu dancing was great but with the ship having brought so many clients my position had a lot of glare and was not great for photos but here is one anyway.

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban tour; Zulu dancing

    Durban tour; Zulu dancing

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    The views in the valley of 1000 Hills are amazing and it is this valley which the Zulus have a great history with King Shaka in chasing the Debe people into the hills!

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban tour; Valley of 1000 hills

    Durban tour; Valley of 1000 hills

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    It was now time for a spot of craft shopping before we headed to Tala game reserve. Once at Tala a 3000 hectare game reserve we spotted lots of animals.

    We spotted Zebra and Kudu first up as well as Blessbok.

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban tour; Tala game reserve, Zebra

    Durban tour; Tala game reserve, Zebra

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    These Zebras posed really nicely for us all in a row and the next dazzle of Zebra also posed by resting there heads on each others backs.

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban tour; Tala game reserve, Zebra heads

    Durban tour; Tala game reserve, Zebra heads

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    It was not long before we got Wildebeest and Ostrich as well and then the one we all wanted to see the Rhino! We had a great sighting of these amazing creatures which are now so highly protected due to poaching.

    Our Durban tour was really taking shape!

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban tour; Tala game reserve, Rhino

    Durban tour; Tala game reserve, Rhino

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Once we left the Rhino we made our way to try find some Giraffe but before we could get there we spotted the Eland antelope which is the Bushmans Totem animal. You will have to take a Durban tour to be told more about this by me and my team!

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban tour; Tala game reserve, Eland

    Durban tour; Tala game reserve, Eland

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    It was now an unexpected animals which we saw in fact 3 of them! We spotted 3 Blue Cranes which are South Africas national bird, then a Secretary bird and a female Impala with horns which is a genetic abnormality.

     

    We really hit the jackpot and then decided to head to the lodge for a rest and the craft shop.

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban tour; Tala game reserve, Blue Cranes

    Durban tour; Tala game reserve, Blue Cranes

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    With this stop planned we decided to change it as we saw a big bus of people about to do the same so we went and found the Giraffe and then visited the dam where we spotted the heads of the Hippos. It was a great Durban tour.

     

     

     

     

     

    Durban tour; Tala game reserve, Giraffe

    Durban tour; Tala game reserve, Giraffe

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    We stopped then at the shop before we headed back to the Sun Princess in Durban harbour. On our way back we chatted more about South Africa and how wonderful the country was as well of speaking of some of the challenges we are still facing a the rainbow nation.

    It had been a great Durban tour and my clients we all very happy.

     

  • 30th August 2014

    Durban Half Day Tour – Valley of 1000 Hills and Zulu Cultural experience:

     

    I met my clients which were a group out for a conference in Durban, at one of  the beach front hotels.

    Three of my clients had already been with me for the past 3 days on a Durban Big 5 Safari in Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve. It is always great to show off the different areas that KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa has to offer and today was no different!

    We took a leisurely drive up into the Valley of 1000 Hills and stopped at PheZulu Safari park where we would enjoy some of the views, the curios shop, Reptile park and then the Zulu Cultural village.

    Although some of my clients were not to keen on the reptile side of things they all agreed to give it a go! The Valley of 1000 Hills was once home to a Cannibalistic tribe which were chased buy the Zulus into the 1000 Hills. It was here the took refuge against the great Zulu King and his Impis (Soldiers). Unfortunately the lack of food caused them to turn on themselves in a cannibalistic nature.

    Anyway the Reptile Park where we looked as Snakes, Crocodiles and Tortoises was great and a new experience for some. It is always a great place to see some of the countries most venomous snakes behind glass and learn more about the complex venom’s they possess!

    I stupidly left my camera in the car for this one but did take it on the Zulu cultural Tour.

    At 11:30  it was time to go to the Zulu Cultural village and educate ourselves on the complex history behind the Zulu Nation. It was spectacular as ever and the Zulu Dancing and singing was great led by Chief Gaza the leader of this village who already has 3 wives.

     

    Zulu Boy celebrates after the acceptance of his marriage proposal during our Durban half Day Tour to the Valley of 1000 Hills

    Zulu Boy celebrates after the acceptance of his marriage proposal during our Durban half Day Tour to the Valley of 1000 Hills

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    In Zulu Culture you can have any number of Wives you want but you have to pay “Ilobola” a dowry out of respect to the parents of the girl and also to prove you can afford to take care of their daughter.

     

    Zulu boy consults the Sangomas or fortune tellers about his new wife to be during our Durban Zulu Cultural Tour

    Zulu boy consults the Sangomas or fortune tellers about his new wife to be during our Durban Zulu Cultural Tour

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    After the acceptance of a proposal the Zulu man consults the fortune tellers of the Sangoma and requested a look into his future. It is at this point that the man can still change his mind if the Sangoma says the girl he wishes to marry is infertile etc

    In Zulu Culture it is important to have lots of children so that the kids can help around the home, work in the fields, look after the Cows, Goats and chickens etc.

    It is also good for the man to have many daughters so that one day he too can receive Cows in exchange for his daughters hand in marriage. One son will allow his name to continue…

     

    The celebrations begin at the Zulu Cultural village on our Durban half Day Tour

    The celebrations begin at the Zulu Cultural village on our Durban half Day Tour

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    After all the dowry is paid the celebrations of the 3 day wedding take place from Friday to Sunday and the two are wed. 

    After a great performance of singing and dancing we headed to the traditional Zulu beehive huts. The first hut was a meeting hut where the men always sit on the right and women on the left in order to protect the women from intruders entering the hut unexpectedly. 

    Boys if they start using the left hand will be taught how to use there right hand as the spears/Assagais are held in the right hand and can be thrown at the intruder who enters the hut.

    Watch some Dancing from our Zulu Cultural Tour click link: Zulu Dancing Video

     

    Zulu man demonstrates how to use the long throwing spear on our Valley of 1000 Hills Zulu cultural experience

    Zulu man demonstrates how to use the long throwing spear on our Valley of 1000 Hills Zulu cultural experience

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Inside the hut the floors are polished with cow dung and the central fire sends up smoke into the Thatched roof in order to prevent the rain from penetrating the hut.

     

    The Assagai invented by the great King Shaka for close combat

    The Assagai invented by the great King Shaka for close combat

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    It was King Shaka who was King of the Zulus from 1816-1828 that invented this short stabbing spear for close combat with the British and the Dutch settlers. This weapon became historical as the Zulus used it to defeat the British at the 1879 Battle of Isandlwana with the then King; Cetswayo.

     

    After this amazing experience we moved on to Hillbillies for lunch also with a great view over the valley of 1000 hills. They also have a lot of craft markets that my clients enjoyed looking through. 

    Once we were done here I took everyone up to secret location which has brilliant views over the valley of 1000 hills and from here we started our journey back to Durban.

    It had been a very enjoyable half Day Tour in the Valley of 1000 Hills with a lovely mix of Zulu Cultural, singing and dancing!

     

     

  • 9th August 2014

    Durban Day Tour to Shakaland – Zulu Cultural village 8th August 2014

    I met my client at one of the Durban hotels and as it was a large group than my vehicle can take we rented a larger vehicle to conduct the Durban Day Tour in.

    Our destination was Shakaland 160 km from the city of Durban and a functional Zulu cultural village where the film “Shaka Zulu: was filmed in the 1980’s.

    The drive to Shakaland is very interesting with the History of the Zulus being covered by myself as the guide as well as the general history of Durban and KwaZulu Natal.

    Shakaland itself is full of interesting history and culture and of course the traditional lunch we have is always great. The clients on this Durban Day Tour were very interested in the Zulu Beer until it came to tasting it! They soon realised we share the pot and pass it around, that seems to put most of them off tasting the good stuff.

    Once we arrived at Shakaland we began with understanding how a Zulu village operates by looking at a model of a traditional Zulu Homestead or Umuzi.

     

    Shakaland the depiction of a Zulu Homestead or Umuzi

    Shakaland the depiction of a Zulu Homestead or Umuzi

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    As we continued on we watched a short video clip in Spanish so the clients could understand better. This Video clip shows sections of the life of the Great King Shaka kaSenzangakhona. It is a great tool to help people understand the history of Shaka and the Zulu nation.

     

    Asking for permission to enter the Homestead at Shakaland on our Durban Tour

     

    Asking for permission to enter the Homestead at Shakaland on our Durban Tour

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    It is always very important to ask permission to enter into a Zulu Umuzi to show respect and of course so the King knows who to expect… either friend or foe.

     

    Durban Day Tour to Shakaland. The Chiefs 1st wife weaves a grass mat for sleeping.

    Durban Day Tour to Shakaland. The Chiefs 1st wife weaves a grass mat for sleeping

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    The Chiefs 1st wife of this Zulu village weaves a grass mate for sleeping on. In traditional Zulu culture grass mats are used to separate the body from the floors polishes with cow dung.

     

    Durban Day Tour a Zulu wife strains the traditional Zulu beer at Shakaland
    Durban Day Tour a Zulu wife strains the traditional Zulu beer at Shakaland

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    In Zulu Culture the women do all the cooking and making of the Zulu beer which the men drink! She above is straining the beer out and keeping the ingredients inside the Isivovo. The ingredients of Maize, Maize malt and Saugum(which I cant spell) is all that is used apart from the water to make the Zulu beer.

     

    Spear throwing demonstration at Shakaland on our Durban day Tour

    Spear throwing demonstration at Shakaland on our Durban day Tour

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    We were very lucky to witness the display of spear throwing  on our Durban Day Tour, something which was done up until King Shaka invented the Short stabbing spear.

     

    Zulu demonstrating how the Zulus Porned the hearts of the British at Isandwana in 1879

    Zulu demonstrating how the Zulus Porned the hearts of the British at Isandwana in 1879

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    It was during the great Anglo-Zulu wars in 1879 that King Cetswayo use the late king Shakas invention to good use and defeated the British at the Battle of Isandlwana.

     

    Zulu girl demostrates how to carry a clay pot on her head during our Durban Day Tour to Shakaland

    Zulu girl demostrates how to carry a clay pot on her head during our Durban Day Tour to Shakaland

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Clay pot was a great big part of Zulu Culture and were used for may different things like carrying water, holding beer, and separating Sour milk from the fluid.

     

    Inyanga medicine man and the Sangoma the fortune teller at Shakaland during our Durban Day Tour
    Inyanga medicine man and the Sangoma the fortune teller at Shakaland during our Durban Day Tour

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    We entered into the Hut of the two most important people in the Umuzi excepting the Chief and his wives. This hut belongs to the Inyanga and the Sangoma. Please note the Elephant skull and these Pythons skin up the pole.

     

    The chief sits just before the drinking of Zulu Beer

    The chief sits just before the drinking of Zulu Beer

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    It is only the chief or royalty that are allowed to wear the skins or Leopard or Lions. These animals are considered Royal game.

     

    After the drinking of the Zulu beer we moved on to the craft market and the clients could buy a few curios and things to take back as gifts for family and friends.

    We then entered into the Dancing hut where for half an hours the Zulu community performed there traditional Dancing for us. I have added a short video clip of what you can expect but its not the best video ive ever taken…

     

    Click this link to the Video of the Zulu Dancing at Shakaland.

     

    After the dancing we headed down for some lunch and then a spot of shopping.

    Once the clients were happy we departed back to Durban. We returned back after a great Durban Day Tour to Shakaland and the clients were very happy.