Mpumalanga is a very culturally diverse Province in art, architecture and history with plenty of beautiful and interesting artefacts that each tell their own story. A majority of interesting cultural and artistic sites can be found near the Kruger National Park and its surrounds. Let’s explore some of the culture that Mpumalanga has to offer.
Shangana Cultural Village
The Shangaan Cultural Village is one of South Africa’s proudest cultural experiences and the centre of a the bustling Mapulana community. Guests to this village can join a tour group that will take you on a true Shangaan experience, sharing a meal with the members of the village, taking part in their traditional dances as well as visiting the mystic kraal to see the village’s sangoma (traditional healer). This is truly an eye-opening experience that you aren’t soon to forget.
White River Art Gallery
Founded by Louis van der Merwe and architect Gavin Smitsdorp, in 2008, in White River at the Casterbridge Lifestyle Centre, the White River Art Gallery was set to be a splash of uniqueness to give some soul and culture to the Centre. With the unique exterior sticking out from the rest of the architecture, the Gallery is very inviting and has a lot of beautiful and interesting art installations that will mesmerize you and make you say: ”Well, that was different!” There are regular shows that show art from a variety of talented and passionate artists.
The Albasani Ruins are the remains of a trading post that was set up in the 19th Century by famous Portuguese trader, Joao Albasini. This Trading Post was set just outside the Phabeni gate, just 10km from hazyview, and was located conveniently between two ancient trading routes. It was very popular to believe that the Albasini Trade Post was the first European settlement in the disease filled loweveld. The trade post had great relations with farmers in the area as well as countless traders.
Ringetani Cultural Village
Located about 45m away from White River lies a cultural village called Ringetani. Visitors to this village will experience true Shangaan culture and traditions as they will eat, sleep and dance with the whole village and will get to experience what makes the Shangaan culture so truly fascinating. This Cultural Village, along with the Shangaan Cultural Village, is some of South Africa’s most precious cultural gems and is well known throughout the country.