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Less than an hour’s drive, 50 kilometres from Bulawayo, Zimbabwe, the Matopos National Park is located. Within its boundaries lies the spectacular and impressive Matobo Hills, a craggy wilderness of tumbling rock boulders.
Matobo Hills were declared as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2003 and on the “Hills of Benevolent Spirits”, the burial grave of Cecil John Rhodes, who once owned the Matobo Hills, can be viewed. The entire area displays an intricacy of peculiar exposed granite formations and is the result of natural faults along the weakest lines, erosion, and natural weathering. The massive granite protrusions, defiant of gravity, create a distinctive ambiance, whilst the stunning purple hills of the Zimbabwean escarpment and the wooded slopes of the National Park lend a peaceful scenic atmosphere to the area. The Shona and other native inhabitants of the region regard the hills as sacred, and many rituals and religious ceremonies are performed in the Matobo Hills.
The amazing Matobo Hills have many hidden caves and as it was once inhabited by Bushman, incredible rock art and artefacts found in this region paint a vivid picture of foregoing beliefs and lifestyles. The hills are the spiritual home of the Matabele people and a visit to the communal village is an interesting and enlightening insight to their cultural and traditional way of living. Although the granite protrusions are the most outstanding feature of the region, the Matopa National Park is a huge attraction to the area. The prime wildlife sanctuary is home to a large population of white and black rhino, various antelope species, baboon, leopard, and is the nesting ground of the Black Eagle. The high cliffs and craggy outcrops is the ideal spot for eagles, hawks, falcons and other raptors. The dams boast wide varieties of fish including exotics such as salmon and bass. Accommodation within the area and in the park is excellent with many quality lodges and camps welcoming guests to the spectacular area.
Matobo Hills and the Matopa National Park has been blessed with incredible natural beauty, have an abundance of attractions and activities on offer, and will touch the inner soul and spirit of all, leaving them to contemplate and value the wonders of nature.