Mdantsane, East London
Did you know?
Mdantsane is also known as a cradle of South African boxing greats.
The Eastern Cape township of Mdantsane is located in a threshold area between East London and King William's Town, in arguably the country's most ecologically pristine province. Vast tracts of virgin land cover much of the Eastern Cape Province, with most of its coastal land proving lush and impenetrable.
It's here that South Africa's No. 1 Son, former President Nelson Mandela, fondly known as Madiba, was born and raised. The original inhabitants of Mdantsane were indigenous people who were forcibly removed from East London's multiracial suburbs in the 1960s in the midst of Apartheid. A dearth of employment followed, since the nearest city was too far to traverse by foot, and public transport was too expensive for most.
Unemployed youngsters formed gangs and roamed the streets, so it comes as no surprise that Mdantsane spawned a clutch of strapping world champion boxers, since this generation had to be brawny for survival's sake. Much later, however, the government subsidised commuting and the situation improved.
Today, Mdantsane township is a vibrant, sprawling quarter, with plenty to fascinate the culture vulture. Visit the memorial to the 1983 Bus Boycott Massacre at Ergeton Station, or drink in some ubuntu - an expression for a people's humanity - at the Mdantsane Arts Centre, a community project that teaches the youth different artistic skills.
Tourists can also experience the township's twilight, by visiting Mdantsane's first dedicated sports bar, the Cornerstone Tavern in NU9. Down a few umqombithis (traditional African home-brewed beer) and hobnob with the animated locals.
Or indulge in a spot of retail therapy at the multi million rand Mdantsane City Shopping Centre, situated in the heart of Mdantsane township. And should you decide to spend the night in the South African township of Mdantsane, be sure to book into a local bed and breakfast.
Travel tips & Planning info
Who to contact
Tel: Velile Ndlumbini on +27-83-487-8975
email: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
Tel: +27 84 581 5172
Buffalo City Municaplity Tourism Office
Tumie's Bed & Breakfast