The Kingdom of Swaziland, the smallest state in southern Africa, has undergone some remarkable changes since it was granted independence from British rule in September 1968.
LS PULL OUT TO GV countryside
MV sign "African City" PULL BACK TO GV of City centre
GV Africans window shopping
MV PAN Mbabane market
CU carved dolls wearing national costume
V Africans making bowls
GV of market
MV African women walking carrying mats on their heads.
GV Parliament building
GV Deputy Prime Minister's office
GV town council offices
MV sign "Embassy House" PAN TO building complex of foreign Embassies
CU Union Jack PULL BACK TO British Embassy
GV United States Embassy
MV PAN dresses on sale in hotel
GV PAN hotel and swimming pool
GV of Mbabane town centre
GV Wimpy bar
GV new shopping mall (2 shots)
GV showing town in valley
Initials RH/MF/DK/1736 RH/1713
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Background: The Kingdom of Swaziland, the smallest state in southern Africa, has undergone some remarkable changes since it was granted independence from British rule in September 1968.
Although conservative in its tribal way of life and governed authoritatively by its monarch, King Sobhuza II, the country is a major tourist centre - mainly catering for South Africans from the densely-populated Wittwatersrand area.
This means that the capital, Mbabane, now presents a strong contrast between the brand new and a way of life that has existed for centuries. Against a backdrop of modern flats, smart office buildings and a shopping complex that would be the envy of any progressive town, the Swazis sit round their traditional market selling their handicrafts.
These consist of a wide and attractive assortment of woven mats, baskets, carved animal figures, spears, shields and beadwork made from seeds, bamboos and porcupine quills. Many of these articles are still used by the people in their everyday lives.
In the Ezulwini Valley hotels of international standard, plus a casino, stand literally within a stone's throw of simple beehive huts, while cattle graze peacefully alongside the new Parliament House. The same kind of scene can be witnessed at Manzini, Swaziland's largest town and its principal commercial centre.
With its tree-lined mountainslopes, colourful people, relaxed atmosphere and benevolent climate,Swaziland would probably be a tourist centre whatever its geographical location. But because it offers South Africans gambling and a more open attitude to so-called "permissiveness," the tourist industry has boomed in recent years.
Tourists brought about 3,300,000 rand (about two million pounds sterling) into the country in 1972 and one of the results is that a growing number of Swazis are able to share in the tourist attractions themselves. The casino, nightclubs and bars are thus increasingly multi-racial and Swaziland is by no means poor in other spheres. Secondary industry is developing and though agriculture still tends to be primitive, the raw materials for modernisation are available.
SYNOPSIS: With its beautiful countryside, colourful people and relaxed atmosphere the kingdom of Swaziland - the smallest state in southern Africa - would probably be a tourist centre whatever its geographical location. But straddling the South Africa - Mozambique border, it mainly attracts South Africans.
Since the tourist boom began in 1971 the capital city, Mbabane, has under-gone changes which have produced strong contrasts between the brand new and a way of life that has existed for centuries. Africans still sell handicrafts in their traditional market.
But this happens against a backdrop of new government buildings, modern flats, smart office blocks and a shopping complex that would be the envy of any progressive town. Tourists brought over two million pounds sterling into Swaziland in 1972 and one of the results is that a growing number of Swazis are able to share in the country's new-found wealth.
Places of entertainment are increasingly multi-racial and Swaziland is by no means poor in other spheres. Secondary industry is developing and although agriculture still tends towards the primitive, the raw materials are available for modernisation. Meanwhile, South African tourists keep coming. Although conservative in its tribal way of life and authoritatively governed by King Sobhuza the second, Swaziland offers gambling - and a more open attitude towards life in general.