A new battlefields route has been created for the central Karoo and it’s the first of its kind for that region.
The KZN battlefields are well known but this new proposed route adds significantly to Dark tourism as a niche tourism market in South Africa.
Dark tourism, which involves travelling to places of war and destruction, is experiencing an increase in popularity worldwide, according to Johan Hattingh, Acting HOD Department: Tourism and Event Management
This also applies to South Africa. Battlefield tourism, as a component of dark tourism, offers tourists the opportunity to experience sites or destinations associated with war. The increased interest in the South African War (1899-1902), both nationally and internationally, provides numerous tourism development opportunity for local areas.
The most well-known battlefield route in South Africa is the KwaZulu-Natal Battlefields Route. Although there are numerous South African battlefield sites in the Karoo, no attempts have been made to develop a comprehensive battlefield route. Thus, the main objective of the investigation was to construct a tourism development plan for the South African War Battlefields Route in the central Karoo. The tourism development plan was informed by an empirical study conducted amongst various stakeholders on the proposed route. The main findings indicate a need for the development of the route and the establishment of a South African War Battlefields Route Destination Marketing Organisation (DMO).