Inspiring Celebrations: Traditional Zulu Weddings

Zulu Men Waiting To Dance

Zulu Wedding Traditions

Have you ever wondered what happens at a traditional Zulu wedding? As one of the preferred wedding tent providers in South Africa, our team of marquee experts have been involved in the setup of may inspiring celebrations over the years. There is nothing we love more than being able to create a welcoming space to accommodate important events and occasions – even more so if it celebrates a unique and interesting culture.

Here are a few interesting things we’ve learned about traditional Zulu weddings over the years:

  1. Traditionally, the groom is required to pay a dowry (also called lobola) in the form of cattle, the number of which is determined during a series of negotiations with the woman’s family. Fathers and uncles will drive up the ‘price’ as much as they can because traditionally the cattle used to serve as a source of financial support for the bride and any children she may have if something should happen to her husband.
  2. On the day of her wedding, a Zulu bride will change her outfit at least three times to show off her beauty to her in-laws in different styles and colours.
  3. The wedding service itself takes place at a local church, after which the service normally follows at the groom’s home. These days, many brides choose to wear a wide wedding gown during the wedding service, but this is almost immediately swapped out for tradition Zulu garb when the couple makes their way to the reception.
  4. Gifts are exchanged between the families as a part of the wedding ceremony. The bride will most commonly gift her new family with blankets, which they will drape over themselves in front of their guests to show their approval of the union.
  5. One of the highlights of a traditional Zulu wedding is competitive dancing and singing between the bride and groom’s families. This ritual antagonism marks the point at which the Zulu bride disconnects from her own ancestral line and joins her husband’s.

Sounds pretty wonderful, right? Keep an eye on the blog in the coming weeks and months as we share more interesting facts about traditional celebrations around the globe. In the meantime, feel free to get in touch if you’re planning to host an inspiring event of your own and require the services of an expert marquee tent provider. Our range of event tents can be tailored to suit occasions of all shapes and sizes.

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