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Home » 5 Reasons Why You Need To Visit Maropeng – Cradle of Humankind

5 Reasons Why You Need To Visit Maropeng – Cradle of Humankind

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If you haven't been to Maropeng – Cradle of Humankind just yet, here's five reasons why you need to book your tickets online now and explore this amazing World Heritage Site! 

It's A World Heritage Site

Officially being recognised as a World Heritage Site in 1999, Maropeng – Cradle of Humankind has been dubbed as the place where it all began: the birth of humanity. Why here of all places in the world, you may ask? Well, for starters, it is one of the world’s richest fossil sites.

Here, fossils discovered within the Sterkfontein Caves date back to more than 4-million years ago. And secondly, the caves themselves are certainly amazing, not only for their spectacular views and structures, but also because it's a time travelling vortex that'll take you back to the prehistoric age of our planet.

This destination is extremely interesting, exciting and thrilling, and is a must-visit you need to do at least once. Also, Maropeng and the Sterkfontein Caves are both located within close proximity to active scientific dig sites, where researchers are digging, reconstructing and researching humanity’s complex origin.

Fun fact: Did you know that an estimated 40% of all the world's human ancestor fossils have been found in the Cradle of Humankind?

It's Edutaining!

Visiting Maropeng – Cradle of Humankind is the perfect outing for the entire family. Not only is it educational, teaching visitors about the beginnings of humankind, but it is also loads of fun. The award-winning world-class exhibition, the Maropeng Visitor Centre, showcases the development and evolution of humans, as well as all of the interesting fossil and excavation discoveries that have been made in the area over the years.

Here, guests will enjoy a self-guided and interactive journey through time, beginning with the formation of the planet, then moving forward through the evolutionary processes over thousands and millions of years, to the world as we know it at present. You'll also get the opportunity to view fossils that are millions of years old, find out how humankind came to be, see stone tools that are up to 1-million years old, and so much more.

To get your tickets to visit the Maropeng Visitor Centre, be sure to book online as they are not selling tickets onsite. Please see the Maropeng Visitor Centre's operating hours, costs and further details below:

  • Opening times: Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, from 09:00 – 16:30 (final tour at 16:30).
  • Costs: All visitors over the age of six: R100 per person | Children under the age of six: Free entry
  • Click here to book online.

Image from Maropeng Visitor Centre.

You'll Explore 4-Million Year Old Caves

One of the tours you absolutely need to do when you visit Maropeng – Cradle of Humankind is the Sterkfontein Caves tour! We promise you, you will be absolutely amazed by the time you have ended viewing and exploring this breathtaking cave. The Sterkfontein Caves are renowned for their fossil discoveries, the most notable and well-known being the find of Mrs Ples, the most complete skull of a 2.1-million-year-old Australopithecus Africanus ever found in South Africa; and Little Foot, an almost complete Australopithecus skeleton that's more than 3-million years old.

The walking tours through the Sterkfontein Caves starts above ground, and will delve deep into the caves, showcasing where scientists discovered many hominid and other animal fossils. You'll also get to view the amazing sights of the cave itself, filled with various stalactite and stalagmite formations along the cave's floor and ceiling.

To get your tickets to visit the Sterkfontein Caves, be sure to book online as they do not sell tickets onsite. Please see the Sterkfontein Caves's operating hours, costs and further details below:

  • Opening times: Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, from 09:00 – 16:00 (final tour at 16:00).
  • Costs: All visitors over the age of six: R100 per person | Children under the age of six: Free entry
  • Click here to book online.
Sterkfontein Caves

The Sterkfontein Caves. Image from Maropeng.

It's A Lovely Getaway Destination

Why not make a weekend of it and plan a quick getaway with your family at the Maropeng Boutique Hotel? This beautiful destination offers 24 bedrooms, that can accommodate up to 48 people. Here, you'll get to enjoy the beautiful views of the Witwatersberg and Magaliesberg ranges, be within walking distance from Maropeng Visitor Centre and a short 10km drive from the Sterkfontein Caves. Their room rate includes free high-speed internet, air conditioning, a lovely breakfast, free parking, as well as access to the pool, restaurant and bar, and wheelchair access.

Maropeng Hotel Lounge

The Maropeng Hotel Lounge. Image from Maropeng.

Dining With A View

Feeling hungry after all of your exploring and learning about the beginning of humankind? Then why not refuelled and delight your taste buds at the onsite Tumulus Restaurant? Situated on the first floor of the ever-bustling Maropeng Visitor Centre, this restaurant offers their diners not only something delicious to dine on, but also some of the best views in Gauteng. This is the perfect location to enjoy sundowners as the sunsets, enjoy a romantic dinner for two, or treat the family to some light meals before or after your adventure through the Maropeng Visitor Centre or the Sterkfontein Caves.

Tumulus Restaurant

Tumulus Restaurant. Image from Maropeng.

For More Information

For more information about Maropeng – Cradle of Humankind and the Sterkfontein Caves, visit

You can also contact them on 014 577 9000 or [email protected].

Don't forget to follow them on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for the latest news, events, exhibitions, discoveries and more.


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