Warming Up to South African Heritage
After the dark chill of winter, spring is a burst of warmth, light and colour – and with it comes a craving for braais, ocean breezes and an ice cream cone or two. However, September not only heralds the start of longer days and warmer temperatures – it’s also Heritage month.
South Africans celebrate Heritage Day by remembering the many cultures that make up South Africa. However, this year we’re taking advantage of the warmer weather and venturing outside to celebrate what makes us all uniquely South African. We’re heading to where it all began…
Start at the Beginning
Located in the Witwatersberg and Magaliesberg mountain ranges the Cradle of Humankind is the perfect setting for a beautiful spring day. The Maropeng Visitor Centre is one of South Africa’s eight World Heritage Sites and one of our major tourist attractions. This award-winning, world-class exhibition brings us the first chapter in heritage by focusing on the development of humans and our ancestors over the past few million years.
The Wonder Cave
The Sterkfontein Caves are also located in the Cradle of Humankind. These caves are home to the most longstanding, continuous paleoanthropological dig in the world and renowned for its fossil finds. It’s here where you’ll find the pre-human skull popularly known as “Mrs Ples,” and the almost complete hominid skeleton affectionately known as “Little Foot”.
Maropeng aims to make learning fun for children and adults. Maropeng takes an adventurous approach to this educational process with an underground boat ride that takes visitors through the various stages of Earth’s creation. Visitors then emerge into the main exhibition halls where the evolution of humankind is illustrated through fun and interactive displays and games. The collections on display change throughout the year, ensuring there is always something new to see at Maropeng.
A Natural Choice
In addition to exploring the origin of mankind, Maropeng also addresses environmental threats and solutions. The sustainability wall, which runs across the main exhibition room, highlights important facts about modern humans and our consumption of rapidly decreasing natural resources.
And There’s the Health Benefit
If cultural heritage and learning isn’t for you, then consider the health benefits a trip to Maropeng may have. Spending time outside is good for your mental health and can help with seasonal depression. When paired with physical activity, like hiking or running, the health benefits of going outside increase and may lower blood pressure and stress.
What are you waiting for? Join us this September for fun-filled learning and fresh air.
For more information on rates and opening times, visit www.maropeng.co.za