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KKwaZulu-Natal’s Freedom Route offers a multi-perspective view of life under apartheid, thanks to its melting pot of cultures. See the landmarks, walk in struggle heroes' footsteps, and admire the statues and plaques built in their memory by successive generations who today enjoy the fruits of a democratic country.

Did You Know?
AAlbert Luthuli was Africa's first Nobel Peace Prize Laureate.

WWalk in their shoes, visit their homes and discover the celebrated struggle heroes of KwaZulu-Natal whose fight for freedom left a legacy for future generations of South Africans.

The KwaZulu-Natal Freedom Route spans the cities of Durban and Pietermaritzburg, leading struggle history pilgrims on a fascinating journey through museums, and homes and hideouts of the region's many anti-apartheid activists.

DDurban's KwaMuhle Museum chronicles the lives of Africans who lived and worked in Durban from 1928 to the late 1980s. View the city through their eyes and learn more about labour regulations, separate housing and the protest action taken against such restrictions.

The Luthuli Museum celebrates the life and times of human rights visionary Albert Luthuli. Set in his former home, the museum features significant belongings, a life-size model of the man himself and numerous photographic records of his humanitarian work.

On the outskirts of Durban lies the Cato Manor informal settlement, formerly an inter-cultural blend of Indian and African dwellings. Once home to noteworthy South Africans such as late musician Sipho Gumede and President Jacob Zuma, the area has overcome the riots of 1949 and 1959 and subsequent squatter status to become an integrated community.

North of Durban, along the Inanda Heritage Route, is Phoenix, where Mahatma Gandhi shared his belief in passive resistance. There's also the Ohlange Institute, the first educational facility in South Africa built by Africans for Africans, which was founded by John Langalibalele Dube, the first president of the South African Native National Congress (which became the ANC).

DDating back well over a century, Pietermaritzburg's old prison has survived significant historical events. It features a museum block, gallows, execution block, cells that once held a number of national heroes, and a newly created Project Gateway community development initiative.

Other historical sites worth visiting in the vicinity include Mahatma Gandhi's statue, the old Pietermaritzburg station, the Alan Paton Centre & Struggle Archives, and Sobantu township.

Of particular interest is the Mandela Capture Site near Howick. It was here that the late Nelson Mandela was arrested on 5 August 1962 – this was the catalyst for a series of trials, culminating in the Rivonia Treason Trial that would ultimately see him spend 27 years in prison.

Until relatively recently, the Mandela Capture Site was just a small bricked area with a plaque. But on the 50th anniversary of this event in 2012, an impressive steel sculpture and visitor centre was unveiled to give full recognition to the significance of this spot.

 

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Kwa-Zulu Natal Freedom Route

Vibrant culture

The Old Synagogue - from Jewish place of worship to historic courtroom

Vibrant culture
The Old Synagogue - from Jewish place of worship to historic courtroom

Paul Kruger Street Synagogue, the first synagogue to be constructed in Pretoria, was expropriated by the government in 1952 and converted into a special Supreme Court.

Vibrant culture

Emirates Airline Park - How Emirates Airline Park played host to SA’s post-apartheid reconciliation

Vibrant culture
Emirates Airline Park - How Emirates Airline Park played host to SA’s post-apartheid reconciliation

Emirates Airline Park played a significant role in South African sporting history, after hosting the 1995 Rugby World Cup final.

Vibrant culture

The Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory

Vibrant culture
The Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory

The Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory is committed to preserving the work of the Nelson Mandela Foundation.

Bustling city life

Johannesburg City Hall Steps - Stand with activists and resistance fighters.

Bustling city life
Johannesburg City Hall Steps - Stand with activists and resistance fighters.

The City Hall steps in Johannesburg have seen many protest meetings and people including Nelson Mandela speaking from them.

Vibrant culture

Pretoria Central Prison - Pretoria Central Prison bears testament to South Africa’s turbulent past

Vibrant culture
Pretoria Central Prison - Pretoria Central Prison bears testament to South Africa’s turbulent past

Pretoria Central Prison is arguably the most infamous prison where Mandela was held before he was transferred to Robben Island.

Vibrant culture

Steve Biko Museum, a journey of remembrance and discovery through our struggle history.

Vibrant culture
Steve Biko Museum, a journey of remembrance and discovery through our struggle history.

The Steve Biko Centre is located in Ginsberg, King William's Town, Eastern Cape and entrance to the centre is free.

Active adventure

Challenge yourself with the Midlands Ultra Marathon

Active adventure
Challenge yourself with the Midlands Ultra Marathon

Challenge yourself with the Midlands Ultra Marathon

Vibrant culture

FNB stadium - Step into the “calabash” one of Africa’s biggest stadiums.

Vibrant culture
FNB stadium - Step into the “calabash” one of Africa’s biggest stadiums.

The FNB stadium continues to be the preferred platform of choice for the Soweto derby involving Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates.

Vibrant culture

Nelson Mandela Centre for Reconciliation - Retreat into Madiba’s home and experience his legacy.

Vibrant culture
Nelson Mandela Centre for Reconciliation - Retreat into Madiba’s home and experience his legacy.

Retreat into Madiba’s home at the Nelson Mandela Centre for Reconciliation and walk in the footsteps of greatness.

Vibrant culture

Kholvad House, landmark of the South African liberation struggle

Vibrant culture
Kholvad House, landmark of the South African liberation struggle

Flat 13 Kholvad House remains one of Johannesburg’s most treasured heritage gems.

Vibrant culture

Take a journey into the centre of Africa’s rich heritage at the Regina Mundi Church

Vibrant culture
Take a journey into the centre of Africa’s rich heritage at the Regina Mundi Church

Regina Mundi Church a struggle landmark and a tourist attraction that continues to serve the community.

Vibrant culture

Palace of Justice - Beyond a reasonable doubt: Five reasons why Palace of Justice warrants a visit

Vibrant culture
Palace of Justice - Beyond a reasonable doubt: Five reasons why Palace of Justice warrants a visit

Nelson Mandela and other political leaders stood trial in the Rivonia treason trial at the Palace of Justice in 1964.

Vibrant culture

Cape Town City Hall – A grand old building.

Vibrant culture
Cape Town City Hall – A grand old building.

Cape Town City Hall – A grand old building.

Vibrant culture

Explore St George's Cathedral, the oldest cathedral in southern Africa

Vibrant culture
Explore St George's Cathedral, the oldest cathedral in southern Africa

At St George's Cathedral, the church kept its doors open to people of all races throughout the apartheid era.

Bustling city life

Alexandra heritage precinct - Historic and iconic

Bustling city life
Alexandra heritage precinct - Historic and iconic

Explore the Alexandra Heritage Precinct, a moving testament to Mandela’s strength.

Vibrant culture

Houses of Parliament –The heart of Cape Town

Vibrant culture
Houses of Parliament –The heart of Cape Town

Houses of Parliament –The heart of Cape Town

Bustling city life

Feed your appetite for Joburg’s culture and history with Past Experiences tours.

Bustling city life
Feed your appetite for Joburg’s culture and history with Past Experiences tours.

Feed your appetite for Joburg’s culture and history with Past Experiences tours.

Vibrant culture

Chancellor House – Where Mandela & Tambo Attorneys once flourished

Vibrant culture
Chancellor House – Where Mandela & Tambo Attorneys once flourished

Chancellor House – Where Mandela & Tambo Attorneys once flourished

Vibrant culture

Drakenstein Correctional Centre

Vibrant culture
Drakenstein Correctional Centre

Drakenstein Correctional Centre

Bustling city life

Nelson Mandela Square – An urban tribute to a universal icon

Bustling city life
Nelson Mandela Square – An urban tribute to a universal icon

Nelson Mandela Square – An urban tribute to a universal icon in the heart of Sandton, Johannesburg.

Bustling city life

The Saxon Hotel - Snuggle into all that the Saxon has to offer.

Bustling city life
The Saxon Hotel - Snuggle into all that the Saxon has to offer.

Beneath the warm and tree-lined Johannesburg skies you’ll find the City of Gold’s luxurious Saxon Hotel.

Vibrant culture

Nobel Square - A tribute to great men

Vibrant culture
Nobel Square - A tribute to great men

Tribute to great men Nobel Square, Cape Town

Vibrant culture

In memory of those who sacrificed everything. Sharpeville Human Rights Precinct, Gauteng

Vibrant culture
In memory of those who sacrificed everything. Sharpeville Human Rights Precinct, Gauteng

In memory of those who sacrificed everything Sharpeville Human Rights Precinct, Gauteng

Vibrant culture

Nelson Mandela Bridge

Vibrant culture
Nelson Mandela Bridge

The Nelson Mandela Bridge - A fitting tribute to a great leader

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