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01 Mystical animals etched into stone by ancient Bushmen tribes in the Karoo, South Africa
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03 Old man points at the ancient bushman paintings. Shot in Hottentots Holland Mountains, Vergelegen area, near Somerset West, Western Cape, South Africa
02 Bushmen (san) rock painting of antelopes, South Africa

Travel back in time through South Africa's history

CultureSouth Africa

Every era of South Africa's history is unique, and tracing its footsteps back in time is a fascinating experience. The first people to inhabit South Africa were the San, whose 25,000-year-old cave paintings can be seen on a hike through the Cederberg mountains, just north of Cape Town, by following the Art Rock Sevilla trail.

The Cederberg region is also home to other archaeological digs like the Diepkloof Rock Shelter and Elands Bay. Don't miss the Giant's Castle in Drakenberg, another stunning cave painting site. Ask your local agency for a guide who can accompany you and explain the San people's lifestyle and nomadic traditions.

To immerse yourself in South Africa's history, add a paleoanthropological stop at The Cradle of Humankind to your itinerary. Located northwest of Johannesburg, this UNESCO World Heritage Site is full of limestone caves and early hominid fossils.

In the very north of South Africa, you can explore the archaeological and cultural site of Mapungubwe. In the heart of the Mapungubwe National Park, was one of the earliest sites of goldsmithing between 1200 and 1300 AD. There's a fascinating museum here, where you can discover a captivating archaeological collection.

In Kimberley, in the center of the country, you'll find The Big Hole, the largest mine ever dug by humanity. You can explore it on your own or with a guide to get to the heart of South Africa's diamond mining history. The location includes a mine, an exhibition center, and a miner's village.

Other unmissable experiences