The morning was spent visiting the battlefields of Isandlwana and Rorke’s Drift, famous for the battles between the British and Zulus in 1879.
Isandlwana was the scene of a defeat of around 2,000 British troops by 20,000 Zulus. The 1964 film Zulu is a depiction of the battle at Rorke’s Drift, where 140 British troops held out against 4,500 Zulus. We were provided with seats at the battlefield, where our guide, Dalton, told us the history of both battles.
After a visit to the Battlefields, our next port of call was the Talana Museum. It is both an indoor and open-air museum, which prides itself on being ‘the home of precious relics’. We had an enjoyable meal in the restaurant, a typical mine dwelling house from the early 20th century. We then had a couple of hours in which to examine the other exhibits.
On the way to the battlefields …
… we meet cows on the road.
Isandlwana, the site of the battle
Each cairn is set above the bodies of between 2 and 20 soldiers.
Dalton, the guide, who told us the story of the conflict
The Isandlwana battlefield site
A memorial to those who fell fighting on 22nd January 1879
A recently placed wreath in remembrance
In memory of old boys of Maritzburg College killed at the battle of Isandlwana
A bronze memorial
The leopard represents the Zulu monarch. It is sitting on the shields of the Zulu warriors.
A memorial at Rorke’s Drift
The interior of the church
An old steam train that spent 70 years hauling coal. The coach was originally built in 1931 as a dining coach.
A railway crossing sign in English and Afrikaans
Kwwakunje Village, a reconstruction of a Zulu village.
Engine shed with a Lister Blackstone diesel engine
Henderson Hall, a reconstruction of the powerhouse from Burnside Colliery ca 1916.
An unidentified flower. Has anyone an idea what this could be?
Calliandra, powder puff of fairy duster
Ladysmith Black Mambazo – Abantwana Basethempeleni