Choose your country and language:

Africa

  • Global
  • Angola
  • Botswana
  • DRC
  • Ethiopia
  • Ghana
  • Kenya
  • Malawi
  • Mozambique
  • Namibia
  • Nigeria
  • South Africa
  • Tanzania
  • Uganda
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe

Americas

  • USA
  • Argentina
  • Brazil

Asia Pacific

  • China
  • India
  • Japan
  • South Korea
  • Australia

Europe

  • France
  • Germany
  • Italy
  • Netherlands
  • United Kingdom
Back
Gauteng

TThe Voortrekker Monument commemorates the epic exodus of disillusioned Boers from the Cape into the interior. This massive monument is ringed with granite ox-wagons, and contains a frieze of Boer heroics inside. The large grounds have been declared a National Nature Reserve, which abounds with small game.

The monolithic Voortrekker Monument is one of the first landmarks visitors see as they drive into Pretoria from the south. It commemorates the epic exodus by disillusioned Boers from the Cape into the interior, which laid the foundation for the borders of present day South Africa.

Did You Know?
TThe granite frieze in the Voortrekker Monument is the largest in the world.

IIn 1834, slavery was abolished throughout the British Empire. This was highly unpopular with the Boers and became the focal issue of greater disaffection. In what has come to be known as the Great Trek, thousands of Boers began migrating from the Cape in late 1835. Beyond the border they fanned out, with most choosing to continue either into the central interior or north-east into present day KwaZulu-Natal.

TThere Zulu king, Dingane took fright at the arrival of large numbers of settlers. He massacred one group under Piet Retief and ambushed another before being defeated at Blood River on 16 December 1838.

Shortly after, the British annexed what the Boers called Natalia, causing them to trek again into the interior to the areas that were to become the Boer republics of the Orange Free State and Transvaal.

Food
When to visit
How to get here

GGerard Moerdijk designed the Voortrekker Monument, which was opened on 16 December 1949. Ringed by 64 granite ox-wagons outside, the inside features a historical frieze and cenotaph, which is lit every 16 December by a shaft of sunlight through an opening in the roof. The granite frieze, depicting the heroics of the trekkers on 27 bas-relief panels, is the largest in the world.

OOn the outside of this Pretoria monument are five massive statues of Boer leaders and another by Anton von Wouw of a Boer woman and her two children. On the grounds are an indigenous garden and an open-air amphitheatre. In 1992, the Voortrekker Monument Nature Reserve was declared around the site.

Who to contact
How to get there
Best time to visit
Around the area
Get around
What will it cost
Length of stay
Where to stay
What to eat

Related articles

Historic places of worship in South Africa: cathedrals, churches, mosques, synagogues and temples catering to religious diversity

Historic places of worship in South Africa: cathedrals, churches, mosques, synagogues and temples catering to religious diversity

South Africa is a country of rich religious diversity, protected by the Constitution, so explore sacred architecture and spiritual traditions at our many historic places of worship.

Tour Soweto in Gauteng: experience vibrant township life and the spirit not even apartheid could crush in the south of Johannesburg

Tour Soweto in Gauteng: experience vibrant township life and the spirit not even apartheid could crush in the south of Johannesburg

Take a tour of Soweto, Johannesburg’s vibrant city-within-a-city – apart from learning the history of the struggle against apartheid, you can immerse yourself in a modern urban vibe with lots to do.

Soweto Bicycle Tours: see the famed suburbs on two wheels

Soweto Bicycle Tours: see the famed suburbs on two wheels

Soweto Bicycle Tours let you explore South Africa’s most famous township’s streets with a qualified guide, taking in historical sites like the former homes of Nelson Mandela and Archbishop Tutu.

South African architectural tours: explore the urban design that built a nation

South African architectural tours: explore the urban design that built a nation

South African urban architectural design tours introduce visitors to the eclectic array of styles and influences behind the country’s most iconic buildings.

South African cultural museums: rich traditions and history all over

South African cultural museums: rich traditions and history all over

South Africans are a diverse mix of peoples from Africa, Europe, Asia and elsewhere, and the many museums scattered around the country preserve rich histories, heritages and cultural traditions.

Xhosa cuisine: the dishes and traditions

Xhosa cuisine: the dishes and traditions

Xhosa cuisine: the dishes and traditions

African ancestors

African ancestors

African ancestors continue to give Africans a shared and personal sense of self-affirmation, identity and unfettered belonging.

Zulu cuisine: the dishes and traditions

Zulu cuisine: the dishes and traditions

Zulu cuisine is still very much influenced by tradition and its celebration of history and a commitment to culture.

South Africa on social media

Copyright © 2020 South African Tourism
|Terms and conditions|Disclaimer|Privacy policy