"The Kingdom of Swaziland" Top 5 Page for this destination Swaziland by junecorlett

Swaziland Travel Guide: 265 reviews and 672 photos

Swaziland

A tiny country with a huge heart and warm friendly people fitting the description od Swaziland - a country that, as the only absolute monarchy in Africa, embraces its own unique and ancient traditions.
These traditions are carefully guarded and faithfully celebrated and are just one aspect that makes the Kingdom such a special place to visit.
This county merits a lot more time than a whistle-stop tour between her borders during a one or two night stay.

There is plenty to do and see, of which I will build in my things to do, restaurants and golfing.

Swaziland has always been a land of Kings. Since the building of a nation, a line of kings has led his subjects.

The heir to the throne is chosen according to his mother's status and a Queen Mother is selected based on her high rank, by the Royal Council following the King's death.
The King is always a "Dlamini" and never intermarries so the Queen Mother is never a Dlamini. The king must be her only son.
He is expected to choose wives from various clans to ensure national unity.

The Reed Dance takes place late in August or early September and is a ceremony that attracts young maidens from all over the Kingdom, providing the opportunity to honour the Queen Mother. Most of the participants are teenagers, although some of the girls are younger.
Over 20 000 maidens gather reeds from the selected areas and the day of the Umhlanga begins with bathing and grooming prior to appearing before the King and Queen Mother.
The girls wear short beaded skirts with anklets, bracelets and jewellery and colourful sashes. The Royal princesses wear red feathers in their hair and lead the maidens to perform the dance before their Majesties.

This ceremony may be freely photographed, provided you have A PERMIT FROM THE MINISTRY OF INFORMATION.

The red feather

The red feather is a symbol of excellence and a royal welcome that Swazis extend to their visitors.

His Majesty the King wears three red feathers as a crown.
Princes wear up to three, normally on the side of the head. Princesses only wear them during the annual Umhlanga and Incwala ceremonies. Outstanding members of the King's regiments may be awarded a red feather in recognition of loyal service.

  • Last visit to Swaziland: Jun 2009
  • Intro Updated Jun 18, 2009
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Reviews (17)

Comments (46)

  • lynnehamman's Profile Photo
    Feb 10, 2011 at 1:27 AM

    Excellent page with good tips and photos. Love the Swazi Legend. Shopping looks good too

  • mallyak's Profile Photo
    Feb 7, 2011 at 11:46 PM

    The Chockalate Chilli fudge sounds interesting.

  • kenHuocj's Profile Photo
    Oct 20, 2010 at 12:38 PM

    good to know that the Foresters Arms is still alive and well ;-)))

  • canuck68's Profile Photo
    Aug 9, 2010 at 1:41 PM

    I miss seeing your posts in the SA forum June. Just enjoyed another trip through Swaziland, thanks, Diane

  • King_Golo's Profile Photo
    May 20, 2010 at 9:34 AM

    Sounds like a great place to go to - I've never been to any African country, but would truly love to.

  • BruceDunning's Profile Photo
    Apr 7, 2010 at 2:20 PM

    Wow-we in the US cannot hardly imagine the different culture and the wonderful colors displayed in events like this in a region steeped with tradition. Great job of discussing this.

  • 850prc's Profile Photo
    Dec 20, 2009 at 5:17 PM

    Interesting page on the kingdom, June. My only foray into your part of the world was a 2003 visit to Namibia, which was incredible. Christmas greetings from Florida.

  • omidamini's Profile Photo
    Dec 8, 2009 at 10:57 PM

    Dear my friend, Thanks for made very nice Swaziland Page, I am sure Africa is very nice place for visit.

  • xaver's Profile Photo
    Oct 28, 2009 at 8:11 AM

    looks really like an interesting trip. The lunch at Foresters Arms you described got all my attention.

  • icunme's Profile Photo
    Sep 15, 2009 at 10:29 AM

    Fascinating tour here w/you - really liked the shopping - mohair especially. Grazie, Carol <(•¿•)>

junecorlett

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