News updates from the Kingdom of Swaziland

The Kingdom of Swaziland – Marula Festival


The Kingdom of Swaziland certainly packs a cultural and entertaining punch despite of its relatively small size, and starting the year off with a bang is what this nation does best!

The Swazi people are united by culture and values and the Marula Festival, locally known as ‘Emaganwini’, is one of them. Such events have kept this nation united and inseparable, making it the unique destination that it is.

The Swazis unite in song and dance during this festival, particularly the women who are the brewers of the marula beer. It’s all about dancing and celebrating the provision of the fruit that is not only used for the beer but also for different purposes such as skin care products.

The Kingdom of Swaziland celebrates the start of the Marula season with the annual Marula festival. The Marula season begins each year in mid February and continues until May, bringing with it a celebration of the harvest of the marula fruit. The festival is increasing in popularity, and swiftly becoming one of the country’s most exciting traditional ceremonies.

The festival is over a couple of days with the Queen Mother arriving at Buhleni Royal Residence on the first day, and the women of the area present bucket-loads of marula fruit harvested over the last week. All the women are dressed in traditional clothing and respect is shown, praise and thanks are given.

The second day, which is also the main day, the King usually joins the Queen Mother and the Marula Brew, Umganu, is presented to their majesties, who partake of the brew and declare the season open. This is celebrated by song and dance, specific to the occasion.

Following this, marula brew, buganu, is officially blessed and may be consumed across the country. A second event of similar rituals is held at His Majesty’s Hlane Royal Residence.

The festival will take place from 15th to the 28th of February, and will be a cultural experience not to be missed!

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