South African cultural villages either celebrate the ethnic diversity of the country or focus on the traditions of a specific group. At these cultural villages of South Africa you will get a greater understanding of its people through tours, singing and dancing, storytelling and a traditional meal at fireside.

Did you know?

The colourful interior and exterior design of Basotho and Ndebele homes is done exclusively by women.

South African cultural villages allow the visitor to step back in time to see how the people of this land once lived. Found mainly in the east of the country, most offer the additional benefit of overnight accommodation to really get the feel of the country.

Some of the cultural villages of South Africa celebrate the ethnic diversity of the country, while others focus on the traditions of 1 group. What they all do is enrich the travel experience for the visitor by broadening their knowledge and understanding.

For visitors to Johannesburg the Lesedi Cultural Village is a must. Nestling in the hills an hour out of the city, guests are welcomed at an Ndebele village from where they are taken on a tour followed by an audio-visual history of South Africa. Also included is a traditional buffet with singing, dancing and storytelling.

A multi-cultural South African cultural village is to be found near Sun City in the North West province. While not offering accommodation, highlights include guided tours of Tswana, Zulu, Pedi, Xhosa, Ndebele, Venda and Shangaan villages, as well as cultural performances.  

However, many prefer villages that focus on a specific culture as these allow a greater depth of understanding. These range from small, intimate homesteads to large themed villages. In a beautiful setting is the Basotho Cultural Village near the Golden Gate National Park in the Free State.

Extremely popular for the colour of their homes and traditional dress are the Ndebele villages at Botshabelo near Middleburg in Mpumalanga and the Mapoch Cultural Village outside Pretoria.

Then there are a range of Zulu cultural villages in southern KwaZulu-Natal, especially Shakaland that offers luxury accommodation in a traditional homestead.

Travel tips & Planning info

Who to contact

Lesedi Cultural Village
Tel: +27 (0)87 940 9933

Matsamo Cultural Village
Tel: +27 (0)13 781 0578

Gaabo Motho Cultural Village
Tel: +27 (0)12 706 0004

Sudwala Cultural Village
Tel: +27 (0)13 733 3073

How to get here

The cultural villages are generally located outside major centres, and are best reached by car

Best time to visit

Depending on the region you are visiting, the early summer months are the best although visits are possible all year round.

Get around

Once at the village of your choice, get around on foot.

What will it cost

Consult each village website for details as costs do vary

Length of stay

A full day up to a long weekend

What to pack

Be prepared for outdoor activities. Take a good hat, sunblock, walking shoes, sunglasses.

Where to stay

Most villages offer overnight accommodation

What to eat

You must try the cultural specialties at each village