Great Zimbabwe is a ruined city in the south eastern hills of Zimbabwe near Lake Mutirikwe. About a three hour drive from Harare, if you are interested in history and architecture we highly recommend a visit to this area. A visit to Kyle Recreational Park is definitely worthwhile including whilst in this part of this country. One can go out for boat cruises and fishing on the Lake and see a variety of game in the park including buffalo, common duiker, eland, impala, kudu, reedbuck, warthog, waterbuck, white rhinoceros, widebeest, zebra, giraffe, squirrel, blackbacked jackal, leopard, honey badger, rockdassie, hippopotamus, ostrich, crocodile and porcupine.
Great Zimbabwe was the capital of the Kingdom of Zimbabwe during the country’s Late Iron Age. Construction on the monument by ancestors of the Shona people began in the 11th century and continued until the 14th century, covering an area of 722 hectares (1,780 acres) which, at its peak, could have housed approximately 18,000 people. It is recognised as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.
The ruins of Great Zimbabwe – the capital of the Queen of Sheba, according to an age-old legend – are a unique testimony to the Bantu civilization of the Shona between the 11th and 15th centuries. The city, which covers an area of nearly 80 ha, was an important trading centre and was renowned from the Middle Ages onwards.
Great Zimbabwe served as a royal palace for the Zimbabwean monarch and would have been used as the seat of political power. One of its most prominent features were the walls, some of which were over five metres high and were constructed without mortar. Eventually the city was abandoned and fell into ruin.
The site has been legally protected since 1893 and is currently protected under the National Museum & Monuments Act, which provides for the legal protection of the resources within the property.