Battle of Blood River Memorial | Attraction Guides | History Hit

Battle of Blood River Memorial

Nquthu Local Municipality, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa

History Hit

24 Nov 2020

About Battle of Blood River Memorial

The Battle of Blood River Memorial (Bloedrivier Monument) is a monument to a nineteenth century battle between the Boer pioneers or ‘Voortrekkers’ and the Zulus.

Prior to the Battle of Blood River, a Boer diplomatic group led by Piet Retief were massacred by Zulu forces. On 16 December 1838, angered by the attack, a force of Boers led by Andries Pretorius defeated the Zulus at the Battle of Blood River. The river in question was actually the Ncome River, which was said to have flowed red with the blood of 3,000 Zulus after the clash.

The Battle of Blood River Memorial depicts the main tactic used by the Boers, known as a “laager” or wagon circle. Comprised of 64 bronze wagons, the Battle of Blood River Memorial is located on the original battle site. There are also the nearby Blood River Museum and Ncome Museum, each chronicling the battle from the respective Boer and Zulu perspectives.

Featured In

South Africa Historic Sites

Discover the best Historic Sites in South Africa, from District Six to the Nelson Mandela Museum and more, includes an interactive map of South African cultural locations.