The cultural village is a living museum of old traditions and represents a classical Swazi lifestyle during the 1850's.
The building material is strictly traditional: poles, grass, reeds, leather stripes, earth and dried cow dung.
The Mantenga Cultural Village is a mini complex of sixteen huts, each with its own specific purpose, kraals and byres for cattle and goats, reed fences that serve as windbreaks, and various other structures. With the traditional artifacts on display, the village illustrates many facets of the ancient Swazi way of life: social, economic and religious.
The objective of the cultural village is to enable visitors from all over the world as well as Swazis from all corners of the country to visit it and to maintain a positive interest in the Swazi cultural heritage, including language, customs and practices, rituals, dance, music, folklore, arts and crafts.
After the official opening, it was named "Ligugu Lemaswati" by his Majesty King Mswati III, meaning "The pride of the Swazi People".
On entry, the village people, often wearing traditional clothing, will warmly welcome you. The standard Swazi greeting to the family is "Yebo Nkosi".
The village life is vibrant and energetic and your guide will not only talk you through how the huts and traditional items are made will might also teach you the Siswati words for them. Interaction is encouraged, so try your hand at grinding maize and plaiting mountain grass or join in the Swazi song and dance. An offering of a taste of local food and sometimes brew is made but forget about your cutlery and try it the Swazi way… with your hands! This experience is both informative and memorable - a taste of true Swazi hospitality - and should not be missed.
The Cultural Village is open to visitors every day from 8 am to 5 pm. The traditional dances are held at 11.15 and 15.15 every day.