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Create appropriate holiday mood at Great Zimbabwe

OVER the Easter and Independence Day holidays I took my family to Masvingo to savour the Great Zimbabwe National Monument.

It was a lifetime experience.

We thoroughly enjoyed the thrills and spectacular beauty of Lake Mtirikwi and the sunset cruises, the breath-ta

king and spine-tingling Bopoteke Gorge and the general scenic variety and beauty of the surrounding hills. It was indeed a voyage of discovery.

We were however unhappy with the Department of National Parks and Wildlife and National Museums and Monuments Department who are not doing a good job in creating the appropriate holiday mood for one of Zimbabwe’s major holiday destinations.

I suggest, with the help of the Ministry of Transport, that the Ministry of Tourism makes a welcome to visitors by constructing ornamental structures denoting the Great Zimbabwe architecture punctuated by spacious boulevards, traditional homesteads and curio shops and manicured lawns between the town and the monument.

The Department of Parks and Wildlife could do with bigger billboards on the same highway publicising a game park where visitors could go on safari to see the big five — the elephant, lion, leopard, buffalo and rhino.

The National Museums and Monuments Department should not rely on the great monument only for revenue, but build a small office near the bushmen rock paintings.

Visitors would have travelled long distances and their wish is to get value for money and time. They would be prepared to pay to see the paintings that depict the history of our people dating back tens of thousands of years.

We were dismayed by the neglect and signs of abandonment of the paintings. Lack of care and security has led to vandalism by unruly elements. Empty beer bottles were strewn all over in the caves while the quality of the paintings has started to deteriorate. In a few years’ time there might be no “story” to see. — Own Correspondent.

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