Our expectations of Swaziland wasn’t that big, after our trip through Lesotho. We thought that it couldn’t be that different, but we were wrong. We drove towards Swaziland on a pothole infested road, but when we came over the border from South Africa the roads changed. A nice and clean tar road welcomed us with bus stops on the side made of bricks. Swaziland is a very enclosed country that takes it very seriously to take much care of their residents and people who visit. The king takes it in fact so seriously that he made a law that says that businesses outside of Swaziland have to give up 51% of their business within Swaziland to the king. This deal made it possible to let the big companies of the world to stay out of Swaziland and let the locals flourish with own businesses, and the feeling you get being here i definetly affected by it. Swaziland is a very old Kingdom with 1.1 million residents. They are very true to their old traditions, and love their king and country very much.
Swaziland was calm and relaxed, and had a very different atmosphere than South Africa. The temperature was hot and the humidity high, because the most part of the country lies below 1200 meters. We met a lot of really cool travellers in Swaziland, and decided to let this country be our getaway after some very long drives until here – we ended up staying 4 days in total.
We visited an old Swazi cultural village, were we saw the traditional swazi dance. We learned a lot about the old swazi traditions. For example how normal it was to have more than one wife. Today the law is limited to have a maximum of only 16 wifes, which is how many wifes the king has, together with 150 children. The old king had 75 wifes and 250 children! So as we heard was that a big percent of the Swazilands residents today is actually related to the old king.
We also learned about that the chief in the old swazi village smoked cannabis to get in contact with his forefathers. Cannabis is a big part of their old traditions, and apparently the king today still smokes! The tales say that up to 80 percent of the residents in Swaziland is linked in some way to the marijuana business in their country. You may even know about the name ”Swazi Gold” that was a type of cannabis many hippies were looking for back in the 60’s.
Check out our spectacular gallery from Swaziland here!