Afterhaving assassinated his brother, King Shaka , Dingane took the Zulu throne in 1828. He established his capital at Mgungundlovu . During his reign tensions between the Zulu nation and the newly arriving British and Boer settler’s increased.The eventual defeat of the Zulu army by the Boers forced King Dingane to flee, torching his capital behind him. Today part of the royal enclosure has been reconstructed on the basis of archaeological evidence. Visitor facilities include The Multi-media center, a site guide is available.
2. The Grave of Nkosinkulu
Nkosinkulu settled in the Emakhosini Valley in the early 17th century. He was the progenitor of the Zulu clan. His grave is located near to the Mgungundlovu site museum. Visitors to the site should be accompanied by the site guide.
3. The Grave of Piet Retief
In 1838 the Boer leader Piet Retief and 70 followers were killed at Kwamatiwane(the Hill of Execution )at the command of King Dingane, following the signing of a controversial land treaty. The site is located near to the Mgungundlovu site museum and is marked by a monument erected in 1992.
4. The Grave of Inkosi Senzangakhona
Inkosi Senzangkakhona ruled the Zulu clan until his death in 1816. He was the father of three successful Zulu Kings-King Shaka, King Dingane, and King Mpande.
5. The Graves of earlier Zulu Kings
The graves of Ndaba and Jama, whorespectively preceded Inkosi Senzangakhona are located near to the main road through the valley. The grave of Queen Mthaniya, mother of Senzangakhona is also located close to the road.The graves of Phunga and Mageba, who ruled even earlier are located some distance from the road. Memorials and interpretations will be erected in these sites. Visitors wishing to visit the sites should enquire at Mgungundlovu site museum.
6. The Grave of King Dinuzulu
King Dinuzulu who succeeded King Cetshwayo, reigned from 1884 until 1913. He spent much of his reign in exile on St Helene Island and later then Transvaal. He is buried at KwaNobamba, just outside the park.
7. The Spirit of the Emakhosini
The Spirit of the Emakhosini is a monument to the Zulu people. It comprises, on a grand scale, a bronze Zulu beer- pot, surrounded by the horns/tusks of seven animals associated with the Zulu. The pot stands on a beaded plinth accompanied by bronze reliefs of scenes of traditional Zulu life. The beer-pot is an item found in every household and is symbolic both as a receptacle of the heritage of the valley, and of spirit of togetherness. The horns symbolize the seven Zulu kings who are buried in the valley. Information is available at the site and there are site guides to assist visitors’ also great view of the valley of the Zulu Kings.
The Battle of Gqokli Hill was fought between the forces of King Shaka and Inkosi Zwide of the Ndwandwe in 1818. Although he faced a numerically superior enemy, King Shaka’s military tactics won the day and he scored a huge victory. Two other generals, who would later found nations on the sub-continent, were involved in the battle. They were Soshangane who founded the Shangane nation in Mozambique and Mzilikazi, who founded the Ndebele in today’s Limpompo province and southern Zimbabwe. A battle view site offers a good view of the field of battle as well as interpretation. It is located in the Ophathe area of the park.
This site also offers a good view and interprets, the Ophathe Battlefield, where a running battle between Zulu and Voortrekker forces was fought in the late 1838.
Ulundi battlefield and monument mark where the last battle of the Anglo-Zulu War was fought on July 4, 1879.