Martyr's Cross

Landmarks / Memorials / National Monuments in or near Eshowe, Zululand in KwaZulu Natal, South Africa.

KwaZulu Natal Tourist AttractionsMartyr's Cross

Where? Eshowe, Zululand, KwaZulu Natal

Overnight? Stay in Eshowe, in KwaZulu Natal

The colonisation of South Africa was by no means a smooth or easy process. It was tragic, violent and sometimes unnecessary. Still, after death, mutiny, betrayal and slaughter, we are left with a country that is vibrant, colourful and bursting at the seams with culture and heritage. Touring the battlefields, delving into the history of the towns and meeting the folk that can share insights into the South Africa of yesteryear is a very special experience that resonates with young and old, leaving lasting impressions.

Eshowe is the oldest town in Zululand, KwaZulu-Natal, and, as such, has loads of character and history. It is equipped with two malls and a number of other amenities. Still, it remains small, not overrun with commerce and development. This is home to Martyrís Cross, which stands proudly on Mpodweni Hill, overlooking some of the magnificent mountains and valleys for which this part of South Africa is known and loved.

Martyrís Cross is a monument that was erected in memory of the first Christian martyr in Zululand, Maqhamusela Khanyile. In the latter half of the 1800ís, soldiers were not permitted to become baptised Christians, as they were then presumed to pay loyalties to their beliefs, and not to the Zulu king. However, Maqhamusela Khanyile was prepared to die for his determination to dedicate his life to Christianity and to refuse to serve in the army of King Cetshwayo. And die he did. After one misfire, the weapon let off a single shot, and the countryside fell silent. He was put to death near the Norwegian Mission Station on top of Mpodweni Hill in 1877.

The story of the faith and courage of Maqhamusela Khanyile was carried down through the generations, inspiring young and old alike to pursue their commitment to what really matters to them. In 1937, a concrete cross was erected on the hill to honour Khanyile. Some 14 years later, it was replaced by a cross of steel. Then, in 2007, the granite monument that still stands today was unveiled in a ceremony to honour, not only Maqhamusela Khanyile, but all of those men and women who died martyrsí deaths. It is illuminated at night, giving it a drama that is quite unlike the death that he suffered.

Eshowe is home to a number of other historical attractions for those that are interested in what lies beneath the surface of the beautiful countryside. Pay a visit to Fort Nongqwayi (built by the British), and the neighbouring Basketry Museum. This Basketry Museum is, in turn, part of the Vukani Zulu Cultural Museum, which showcases the arts and crafts of the local Zulu culture.

This region is also laden with exquisite fauna and flora, and a number of conservation areas are contained within the borders of Zululand in an effort to educate, exhibit and protect these treasures. These conservation hotspots include the Greater St Lucia Wetland Park, Hluhluwe-Umfolozi Game Reserve, Itala Game Reserve, and Lubombo Transfrontier Conservation Area.

Why not overnight? Find Accommodation in Eshowe

Eshowe Hills Eco and Golf Estate

Bed & Breakfast / Self Catering

Eshowe Hills Eco and Golf Estate

Situated on the rolling hills just outside Eshowe, with magnificent views down to the coast, and within easy reach of the ... more

Shakaland Hotel

Hotel

Shakaland Hotel

This cultural village is a unique resort built amid thorn trees and aloes, comprising a traditional Zulu ďUmuziĒ or ... more

Dlinza Forest Accommodation

Self Catering

Dlinza Forest Accommodation

Dlinza Forest Accommodation is situated in the historical town of Eshowe in Zululand. We offer four unique, tastefully ... more

Feedback?

Please let us know if anything on this page is outdated or contains inaccuracies. Click here to send us feedback if this is your attraction.

©Unauthorised use of the
photos is strictly prohibited.

SA-Venues.com has been assisting travellers with their South Africa travel plans since 1999, and is the largest online travel guide for South Africa available in both English and German.

SA-Venues.com © 1999-2017. All Rights Reserved. Find and book hotels and accommodation in South Africa. Sitemap