Maropeng and the Sterkfontein Caves

Maropeng is the official visitors centre for the Cradle Of Humankind, a cave-strewn area around 50km north west of Johannesburg where some of the world's most significant hominid discoveries have been made. Declared a World Heritage Site in 1999, fossils continue to be found here, with the latest significant discovery made in 2013.

The Maropeng visitor's centre building (Maropeng means 'returning to the place of our ancestors') is designed to resemble a burial mound. The extensive modern exhibition takes an interactive approach to the history of life as we know it from the big bang to the evolution of humankind, the discovery of fire and the spread of people across continents. A visit starts with a fun boat ride through the ages before you enter the museum proper where interactive and educational displays are complemented by examples of the kinds of fossils and tools which have been found in the Cradle of Humankind.

Maropeng's newest exhibition space 'Almost Human' tells the amazing story of the discovery of the Rising Star Cave and the Homo Naledi fossils in 2015. The exhibition includes the opportunity to see a display of some of the incredible fossil discoveries that made world headlines in 2015 (entrance to the exhibition is included in the museum price).

A perfect accompaniment to the museum is a guided tour of the Sterkfontein Caves (a five-minute drive down the road) where the remains of Little Foot, Mrs Ples and other famous fossils were found. Tours of the caves take around 45 minutes and are not recommended for the unfit as there are numerous steps and some places where you are required to kneel or crawl. Note the Sterkfontein Caves are closed until further notice.

Tickets can be booked online and onsite.


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Facilities for disabled
Guarded parking



The Sterkfontein Caves are closed until further notice. Maropeng is open daily from 09:00–16:00.

Price/Additional Info

Tickets to Maropeng R250 for adults, R100 for pensioners, and kids under 6 free (except for school groups). Tickets can be booked online and onsite.


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