Maropeng, The Cradle of Humankind, Gauteng

Declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1999, the Cradle of Humankind currently occupies 47,000 hectares (470km2) and contains a complex of limestone caves.

Maropeng means "returning to the place of origin" in Setswana, the main indigenous language in this area of South Africa.

The Cradle of Humankind is one of eight World Heritage Sites in South Africa, and the only one in Gauteng. It is widely recognised as the place from which all of humankind originated.

Maropeng Cradle of Humankind

The site has unearthed the best evidence of the complex journey our species has taken to make us what we are. It is not only a place of ongoing scientific discovery into our origins, but also a place of contemplation - a place that allows us to reflect on who we are, where we come from and where we are going.

The Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site has become a major international tourism destination with a total of 387 tourism attractions including 91 graded establishments.


  • Monday - Sunday, 09:00 - 17:00


  • Adults - R120
  • Children (under 18) / Pensioners - R65
  • Children (under 4) - Free
  • School Groups - R65 per pupil


  • +27 14 577 9000


  • Cradle of Humankind, R563 Hekpoort Road, Sterkfontein, Gauteng

To find out more about Maropeng and The Cradle of Humankind, visit their website.

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