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Voortrekker Monument

Pretoria was named after a Dutchman and this massive hilltop structure recounts the history behind the group of Dutch pioneers to which he belonged.

The 131-foot (40-meter) tall fortress of the Voortrekker Monument memorializes the group of Dutch settlers who founded Pretoria. Learn the history of their voyage inside the large, art deco monument.

In 1835, thousands of Dutch settlers left the British city of Cape Town on the south coast and headed north. This was the start of what came to be called the Great Trek. The voyagers were dubbed the Voortrekkers, or pioneers. They eventually settled on the land that became the Transvaal, declaring it independent of British rule. In 1855, Pretoria was founded and named after Andries Pretorius, one of the leaders of the Voortrekkers. See this history depicted in 27 panels that line the walls within the Voortrekker Monument.

Look for the extensive tapestry depicting further scenes from the Great Trek. It took nine women 8 years of work to complete this cloth, which has more than 3.3 million stitches. Find a sculpture of a Voortrekker woman and her two children within the monument. This sculpture was designed by Anton von Wouw, who also sculpted the Paul Kruger statue in Pretoria's Church Square.

Climb down to the lower floor to see Cenotaph Hall, where an empty tomb commemorates the Voortrekkers who died during the Great Trek. Look for a canvas elsewhere in the museum to see an example of the tales that led to the demise of these unlucky settlers. This canvas depicts the treacherous passage of the settlers over the Drakensberg Mountains, which lie to the southeast of Pretoria.

Built in the mid-1900s, the Voortrekker Monument was designed in an art deco style. Climb to the top of the building to see views of Pretoria from above.

Explore the nature preserve around the Voortrekker Monument. Paths pass through the brush. Visit the Garden of Remembrance to the west of the monument for some peace and shade.

The Voortrekker Monument is located several miles south of Pretoria and can be accessed by car or taxi. Parking is available at the monument. The museum is open daily and there is a fee for admission.


Guide to Exploring around Voortrekker Monument


Best Lodging Options Near Voortrekker Monument

See all 409 Properties near Voortrekker Monument
StayEasy Pretoria $50
StayEasy Pretoria

StayEasy Pretoria

632 Lilian Ngoyi St, Pretoria, Gauteng
     
    3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Located in Pretoria Central Business District, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Melrose House and UNISA. University of Pretoria is 3 mi (4.8 km) away.

    Belgrave Hotel
    Belgrave Hotel

    Belgrave Hotel

    22 Railway Street, Tshwane, Pretoria, Gauteng
       
      2.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Located in Pretoria Central Business District, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Melrose House and UNISA. University of Pretoria is 3 mi (4.8 km) away.

      The Park Lodge Hotel $42
      The Park Lodge Hotel

      The Park Lodge Hotel

      499 Thabo Sehume street, Pretoria, Gauteng
         
        3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in Pretoria Central Business District, this hotel is 0.1 mi (0.2 km) from Melrose House and 1.4 mi (2.2 km) from UNISA. National Museum of Natural History and Burgers Park are also within 10 minutes.

        Manhattan Hotel $52
        Manhattan Hotel

        Manhattan Hotel

        247 Scheiding Street, Pretoria, Gauteng
           
          3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          Located in Pretoria Central Business District, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Melrose House and UNISA. University of Pretoria is 2.9 mi (4.6 km) away.

          Sierra Burgers Park Hotel $42
          Sierra Burgers Park Hotel

          Sierra Burgers Park Hotel

          424 Lilian Ngoyi Street, Pretoria, Gauteng
             
            3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in Pretoria Central Business District, this hotel is 0.1 mi (0.1 km) from Burgers Park and within 3 mi (5 km) of UNISA and University of Pretoria. Melrose House and Breytenbach Theatre are also within 10 minutes.

            Muckleneuk Manor $34
            Muckleneuk Manor

            Muckleneuk Manor

            270 Mears Street, Muckleneuk, Pretoria, Gauteng
               
              4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Situated in the business district, this guesthouse is within 1 mi (2 km) of Breytenbach Theatre and UNISA. University of Pretoria is 2.5 mi (4 km) away.

              SUN1 Pretoria $34
              SUN1 Pretoria

              SUN1 Pretoria

              80-85 Pretorius Street, Pretoria, Gauteng
                 
                2.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Located in Pretoria Central Business District, this hotel is 0.2 mi (0.4 km) from Kruger House Museum and 2.3 mi (3.7 km) from UNISA. Kruger Museum and Old Raadsaal are also within 10 minutes.

                Illyria House $163
                Illyria House

                Illyria House

                327 Bourke Street, Pretoria, Gauteng
                   
                  5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Located in Muckleneuk, this luxury hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Breytenbach Theatre and UNISA. University of Pretoria is 2.3 mi (3.6 km) away.