History of Zimbabwe
Discover the heritage and history of Zimbabwe with our travel tips.
Zimbabwe literally translates as “Houses of Stone”, a named derived by the incredible stone sculptures that the indigenous Shona people built from 800 AD onwards and are known today as Great Zimbabwe. There is not a lot of early history about Zimbabwe which was conquered by a motley crew of European Christian missionaries, fortune hunters and land grabbers, in the 1850s.
Cecil John Rhodes bought gold-rich land from the King and then overthrew the monarch, egotistically renaming the country Rhodesia, beginning a mass-scale land-grab and implementing an apartheid policy. By the 1960s, a civil rebellion began with freedom fighters fighting the Rhodesian security forces. In 1980, Zimbabwe was granted independence, with former freedom fighter Robert Mugabe as prime minister.
In 1987, he became the country’s President and drove a number of constitutional changes which led to extensive presidential powers. A large number of white Zimbabweans fled the country in fear of retribution for their former racial oppression and discrimination.
Over the next two decades, there was much civil unrest between opposing parties within the country. However, since 2013, more calm has returned to the country when a constitutional referendum approved an election that will decide whether Mugabe, today in his 90s, should be allowed to extend his 30-year rule.
Zimbabwe tours have flourished in the last decade and many people travel from all over the world for the spectacular Victoria Falls tours.
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