The Voortrekker Monument is situated in a nature reserve and is a unique Monument which commemorates the Voortrekker (pioneer) history of Southern Africa and the history of the Afrikaner.
The Cenotaph is the central focus point of the Monument. The word cenotaph means "empty tomb" and is the symbolic resting place of Piet Retief and all the other Voortrekkers who died during the Great Trek (14000 pioneers travelled from the Cape to the area of modern Gauteng province).
Once a year, on 16 December, the sun shines through an opening in the dome roof of the Monument onto the middle of the Cenotaph.
The sunlight shines on the words "Ons vir jou, Suid-Afrika", literally translated: "We for thee South Africa." The architect, Gerard Moerdijk, planned this specifically because the ray of sunlight symbolizes God's blessing on the life and work of the Voortrekkers.
Full Virtual Tour of the Voortrekker Monument.
Welcome to Africa, AKA the motherland! Check out African Internet Radio while you're scoping the panoramas.The earliest fossil of the homo sapiens family (human beings) was found in Ethiopia, dating back more than 200,000 years. Compared to this length of time, even the "ancient Sumerians" from 6000 B.C. are drooling toddlers.Let's mention a few African heroes you may have heard of, for inspiration in the face of the continued economic inequality and violence which plague Africa today: Nelson Mandela, first democratically elected President of South Africa, who fought against apartheid and served 27 years in prison while advocating freedom and peace. Haile Salassie, Emperor of Ethiopia, who resisted Mussolini and the fascist Italian invasion of WWII, and who is worshipped as an incarnation of God by the Rastafari movement. Kwame Nkrumah, first Prime Minister of Ghana, advocate of uniting Africa in Pan-Africanism. Fela Kuti, inventor of Afrobeat music, who declared his home to be an independent state, ran for president of Nigeria, and to whose funeral ONE MILLION PEOPLE came to pay their respects.In June 2001 the African Union was formed, consisting of 53 African States organized, like in the EU, around common economic and political development.Text by Steve Smith.