8.00 AM - 8.30 AM
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Age at time of travel
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Book for more than 15 people, please contact us directly

On Request Booking (we will get back within 24 hours)
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Pickup info

Pick up from All the Hotels and Guest houses.

Booking notes

All our bookings should be fully paid in advance.

31 days cancellation 100% refund

30 days cancellation 75% refund

15 days cancellation 50% refund

3 days -24hrs cancellation 0 % refund

No refund for bad weather cancellation

The Incwala , or the first fruits ceremony, in which the King plays a dominant role, is the most sacred of all the Swazi rituals. It is held in December or January on date chosen by the traditional astrologers in conjunction with the faces of the moon and the sun.The ritual begins with a journey by the “Bemanti” ( people of the waters) to the Indain ocean to collect water and on their return to the royal kraal, the little incwala begins,on the new moon.

At the full moon, youths from all over the kingdom travel to collect the sacred branches of the “lusekwane” shrub, a species of acacia.
On the third day a bull is ritually slaughtered by the youth, instilling solidarity among them and a spirit of valour. The fourth day is the culmination of the Incwala when the King, in full ceremonial dress , join his warriors in the traditional dance. He then enters a special sanctuary after futher rituals , eats the first fruits of the season. On the appearance of the king to his people, may also eat these fruits with the blessings the ancestors.
The certain parts of the Incwala may not be witnessed by outside people and its vital to have a permit to take photographs within proximity of the royal cattle byre.
If you want to be part of this few big days in Swaziland let us know we will make sure that you don’t miss by keeping you updated on the ecxact

Get to really understand the Swazi people while they are performing one of their traditional rituals called the Incwala Ceremony. This will be made possible by the presence of a local guide who is going to explain all the ceremonial practices and also the meaning behind it all.

The Incwala , or the first fruits ceremony, in which the King plays a dominant role, is the most sacred of all the Swazi rituals. It is held in December or January on date chosen by the traditional astrologers in conjunction with the faces of the moon and the sun.The ritual begins with a journey by the “Bemanti” ( people of the waters) to the Indain ocean to collect water and on their return to the royal kraal, the little incwala begins,on the new moon.
At the full moon, youths from all over the kingdom travel to collect the sacred branches of the “lusekwane” shrub, a species of acacia.
On the third day a bull is ritually slaughtered by the youth, instilling solidarity among them and a spirit of valour. The fourth day is the culmination of the Incwala when the King, in full ceremonial dress , join his warriors in the traditional dance. He then enters a special sanctuary after futher rituals , eats the first fruits of the season. On the appearance of the king to his people, may also eat these fruits with the blessings the ancestors.
The certain parts of the Incwala may not be witnessed by outside people and its vital to have a permit to take photographs within proximity of the royal cattle byre.
If you want to be part of this few big days in Swaziland let us know we will make sure that you don’t miss by keeping you updated on the dates

Get to really understand the Swazi people while they are performing one of their traditional rituals called the Incwala Ceremony. This will be made possible by the presence of a local guide who is going to explain all the ceremonial practices and also the meaning behind it all.

The Incwala , or the first fruits ceremony, in which the King plays a dominant role, is the most sacred of all the Swazi rituals. It is held in December or January on date chosen by the traditional astrologers in conjunction with the faces of the moon and the sun.The ritual begins with a journey by the “Bemanti” ( people of the waters) to the Indain ocean to collect water and on their return to the royal kraal, the little incwala begins,on the new moon.
At the full moon, youths from all over the kingdom travel to collect the sacred branches of the “lusekwane” shrub, a species of acacia.
On the third day a bull is ritually slaughtered by the youth, instilling solidarity among them and a spirit of valour. The fourth day is the culmination of the Incwala when the King, in full ceremonial dress , join his warriors in the traditional dance. He then enters a special sanctuary after futher rituals , eats the first fruits of the season. On the appearance of the king to his people, may also eat these fruits with the blessings the ancestors.
The certain parts of the Incwala may not be witnessed by outside people and its vital to have a permit to take photographs within proximity of the royal cattle byre.
If you want to be part of this few big days in Swaziland let us know we will make sure that you don’t miss by keeping you updated on the exact dates or the week.

 

  • Culture shock: Low
    Culture shock rating

    Some tours or activities are a total immersion ... others offer just a taste of a different way of life. Below is how we\'ve classified things to help you make a selection.

    Low

    Consider these tours or activities as unlikely to surprise. They will still give you fantastic insight into the destination and/or a great experience.

    Medium

    You might find yourself on these tours/activities confronted by quite a different way of doing things to that you are familiar with. Think food, language, customs, religions, mode of transport. For the slightly more adventurous.

    High

    Think things you probably wouldn\'t do on your own ...

  • Group size: from 1 to 15 people
  • Pickup location: 

    Pick up from All the Hotels and Guest houses.

  • Drop-off location: 

    Drop off at the same place.

  • Pickup time: (8.00 AM - 8.30 AM)
  • Drop-off time: (3.00 PM - 3.40 PM)

Itinerary

 

The itineray is as Follows but we have added the other attractions of this tour because the the Incwala ceremony  does not start until 11 a.m

We will pick you up from your place of stay and head down to Manzini and have breakfast in the market where you can try the local dish while you are learning the local language. Look around the Market and shop around for about 45 minutes to an hour.


Stop 2
Head over to Swazi candles- this is a hive of shops its all under one roof. You will have the colorful candles crafted by local artist by hand it’s a must see Not only is there a stunning variety of thousands of candles on display in the factory shop but visitors are welcome to watch the candle making process in the work shop.
With the area you will find the following shops-Swazi sense natural soap, rose craft, sambane café, Kwazi swazi, baobab Batik and also lots of open market stalls.
Stop 3
Malandelas Complex will tend to calm you down and you will feel like have having coffee in the restaurant but there won’t be enough time.
Visit Gone rural, baobab batik shop, House on fire to see the impressive house of entertainment in Swaziland .

Stop 4

We can also combine it with the Cultural village where we will have a tour of the village with the guide explaining the Swazi culture and the Swazi family set up.

See the Swazi traditional Dance performed by both Male and females- you can join then at the end of the performance and have fun.

We are now going to head straight to the Incwala ceremony where we will change into our traditional gear ( provided we were able to get more attire)  for every one.

 

 




Cancellation Policy

31days cancellation before arrival 100% refund

30days cancellation before arrival 75% refund

15days cancellation before arrival 50% refund

3days-24 hrs cancellation before arrival 0% refund

No refund for Bab weather cancellation

Children policy

Children Above  the ages of  6years -12 years are half price.

Above the age 12 years  are full price.

Participant Guidelines

  • Women should be wearing long skirts below the knees, or wear sarongs.
  • Men should not be wearing hats while around the royal palace.
  • If you want to take close pictures of the Royalty you should get a permit from the SNTC(Swaziland National Trust Commission)

 

Other Disclosures

For those who may want to know more of what happens in the ceremony see below. And once you are there everything will fall into place.

Day One
Fetching the lusekwane
A group of young unmarried men meet the Queen mother residence. They then march off to cut the branches of the Lusekwane (sickle bush) the biggest they can carry. Traditionally those collected under the light of the full moon at Gundvwini in the Sidvokodvo area about 50kms away from the royal residence.
The Lusekwane boy must be relatively chaste , as tradition states that the leaves of the lusekwane branches will wither in the hands of the anyone who has been intimate with a married woman, or impregnated a young maiden.
Day 2
The next day the return to the royal kraal with their Lusekwane branches. The elders then weaver the branches between upright poles to create the inhlambelo.- the kings private sanctuary.
Day 3
Day of the Bull
In the morning the young boys who wish to participate in the incwala but are too young for the lusekwane are sent into the hills around Lobamba to cut the branches of the black imbondvo/Combretum apiculatum. The imbodvo are added into the inhlambelo. In the afternoon, a black bull is slaughtered by the lusekwane boys and the remains are made into ritual medicines which are given to the king in his inhlambelo. This place of ceremony is said to encourage solidarity, discipline, valour and loyalty to the nation.
Day 4
Eating the first fruit and throwing it to the gourd.
On the main day of the festival, hundreds of the people in traditional dress assembly at the royal kraal, this includes the king. And his regiments, the queen mother the royal wife’s, and the children, governors, chiefs and any other Swazi people who wish to participate.
Visitors are welcome as long as they conform to tradition (no shoes or Cameras in the Kraal- ox hides and leopard skins are optional.
In the Afternoon the guest of honor assembled on grandstand, the King inspects his warriors. The then will retreats to his Inhlambelo where he bites and spits certain plants from the first harvest. The crowds now begins to low, hypnotic chants surging backwards and forwards entreating the king to come out and rejoin his people – According to David Johnson writing in 1983 “after pretending reluctance , the king energies from his retreat. His face smeared with black medicines, his body draped in bright green grass, his head dressed with big black plumes. His waist belted with silver monkey skin. He then dances before his regiments and his people in a dance that he improvises and is never copied.
The King then throws a sacred gourd which is caught a black shield by one of the lusekwane boys. Until at that moment it is forbidden for any Swazi to eat from the new harvest.
Day 5
This is a solemn day of taboos, people may not have sexual contact and they may not wash. Wearing decorations, sitting on chairs or mats, shaking hands, scratching, singing, dancing, and all other forms of merriment are not allowed. On this day the king remains in seclusion while the bemanti patrol the royal capital ensuring that no one is breaking the rules.
Day 6
On the final day of the festival, the regiments go out and collect firewood. The elders then stack the wood in the middle of the kraal and certain ritual objects are placed on the pyre, representing the old year.
As the crowds sing and dances, the huge bonfire is lit and left to burn. It is considered a good omen if the rains fall and extinguishing the flames.
The king then remains in seclusion until the next full moon , when the lusekwane branches are removed and burnt.