Meeulanders is a South African, Afrikaans-language television drama series created and written by Esta Steyn and produced by C-Films which tells the story of Ryna van Rensburg, a bird expert who - after the tragic death of her husband and child - moves to a small West Coast island, where her life is irrevocably changed by her involvement with three very different families.
After her husband and child burn to death in a fire, Ryna (Michele Burgers) tries to escape her grief by moving to Meeuland, a small guano island on the West Coast, for a three-year stint researching shorebirds.
Soon she finds herself drawn into the worlds of three families: the down-to-earth Langhans family; a coloured family, the Bindemans; and the wealthy and influential Blanckenbergs. The spontaneous Attie Langhans makes her laugh again and you get the sense that he has more than just friendship between them in mind.
But it is his sullen brother, Jacob - the headman of the island - who brings new emotions to the fore in Ryna. His wife, Elsabet, wants to turn her back on Meeuland and him and reclaim a relationship she once shared with Fred Blanckenberg.
Meeulanders is also the story of Doreen Bindeman, a schoolteacher from South Salamander, who is nearing her fortieth birthday and weighing up the stability that her husband offers versus the charm of the new principal.
The events on the island are intertwined with the village life on the mainland, especially when a child is brought to Meeuland in a plain brown bag. Two communities, white and brown, share stories that eventually run hand in hand.
Meeulanders was produced by C-Films. The series was written by Esta Steyn, produced by Dirk de Villiers, executive produced by Mysi Louw and directed by Gerrit Schoonhoven.
It was the first Afrikaans drama series to be produced for the SABC2 channel, debuting in the week it went live in 1996. Filming took place on Malgas Island, Cape Town, Saldanha Bay, Paternoster and Lambert's Bay. Original music was by Barry Donnelly.