A rally with culture

2010-06-03 00:00

BIKE and quad riders, as well as 4x4 enthusiasts will get a traditional Zulu welcome this Sunday when they take part in the inaugural Cato Ridge Table Mountain Bike Rally.

The event is being mounted by Inselelo­ yama-Fuze Tours run by Bongani Ngcobo, who has been busy for several years promoting the Mkambathi (Table­ Mountain) area as a tourism destination.

“The area has a lot to offer both in terms of scenery and traditional Zulu culture and customs,” says Ngcobo. “It’s also very close to Durban and Pietermaritzburg — you can be here in 20 minutes — and the roads are all tarred.”

Ngcobo points out that the area is close to the N3, sits on the edge of the Comrades Marathon route and the Msunduzi River (venue for the Dusi Canoe Marathon) runs right through it. “We need to expose the area nationally and internationally,” he says. “This rally will help us promote tourist interest in the area.”

Induna Mbukelwa Radebe, who reports to Inkosi Smangaye Mlaba of the Kwa Ximba Tribal Authority, will be among local dignitaries welcoming visitors this Sunday. “When they come we can give them full assurance that they will be safe, both now and in the future.” Radebe will be wearing full traditional dress for the occasion.

Induna Bhalo Ngubane, a well-known champion of traditional Zulu culture in the area, who reports to Inkosi Skhosiphi Mdluli, head of the Manyavu Tribal Authority, will also be on hand to welcome those taking part in the rally. “We are looking at building strong relationships with local market visitors,” says Ngubane. “As well as looking for business leaders to support our community business initiatives.”

Ngcobo says community leaders like Radebe and Ngubane are responsible for the peace and stability in the area. “That is what makes this such a safe place to visit,” he says.

On Sunday, riders and dri­vers are invited to join a guided tour of the area. Participants have the option of choosing between a three-hour or full-day tour, with pla­ces of interest such as rural villages, an Umgeni River­ experience, traditional healers and cultural performances on offer.

There will be no entrance fee for this inaugural event, although participants are encouraged to make a R100 donation. Funds raised will be donated to local schools in the community through which the tours will be taking place.

Those interested in attending the event are invited to take their bikes, quads or 4x4s to the Protea Hotel in Inchanga (between Durban and Pietermaritzburg) at 8 am. For more information, phone Bongani Ngcobo at 079 999 0774 or e-mail bongani tours@gmail.com

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