4 000+ tourists visit Great Zim on Christmas

Walter Mswazie in Masvingo

MORE than 4 000 tourists visited the Great Zimbabwe Monuments on Christmas Day as both local and foreign visitors chose to spend the holiday enjoying one of the biggest African heritage sites.

As early as 8AM the reception was already overwhelmed with motorists queuing to pay entry fees, which ranged from $10 for children and $30 for adults. 

For international visitors who were mainly South Africans and a few Europeans, they forked out US$10 and US$15 respectively. 

National Museums and Monuments of Zimbabwe (NMMZ) provincial director, Mr Lovemore Mandima, said considering the state of the economy, the numbers were high and it showed that locals appreciated the importance of domestic tourism.

“It is surprising that our numbers are high given the obtaining economic challenges,” said Mr Mandima.

He said more than 4 000 tourists visisted the monuments on Christmas day.

Mr Mandima said the mood was jovial and officials had to work beyond 6pm to accommodate all the visitors.

“We had to attend to all visitors that included some with special challenges. We cater for everyone here and that include people with disabilities who cannot climb the mountains but normally visit our African village and the conical tower at the Great Enclosure,” said Mr Mandima.

The Zimbabwe Tourism Authority (ZTA) has stepped up the marketing of Great Zimbabwe locally and internationally.

Mr Mandima said efforts were underway to clear the lantana camara plant, which is poisonous to other vegetation.

“We have engaged South African plant protection specialists who have trained our staff and villagers on how to deal with this plant,” he said. – @walterbmswazie2.

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