Barberton Makhonjwa Mountains

World Heritages in South Africa Part II

Mapungubwe cultural landscape (World Heritage)

In the savannah landscape on the border with Zimbabwe and Botswana at the confluence of the Limpopo and Shashe rivers lie the remains of palaces and royal tombs of the Mapungubwe Empire. It was the largest kingdom in southern Africa from the 10th to the 14th centuries. Findings attest to trade relations as far as the Indo-Pacific region.

Mapungubwe cultural landscape: facts

Official title: Mapungubwe cultural landscape
Cultural monument: Archaeological site discovered in 1832 in Limpopo Province, Republic of South Africa; Finds of the largest and most powerful kingdom on the subcontinent between 950 and 1300; among other things remains of palaces, burial places with jewelry, remains of a settlement area; impressive gold work (including wooden carved objects covered with gold sheet) from the period between 1050 and 1200 AD in the cultural tradition of the Shona of Zimbabwe; Finds of glass beads and Chinese porcelain as evidence of trade with the ports of East Africa
Continent: Africa
Country: South Africa
Location: 75 km west of Messina, Limpopo province
Appointment: 2003
Meaning: Unique testimony to over 400 years of development of the social and political structures of a former kingdom


Vredefort Dome (World Heritage)

The Vredefort Ring (Vredefort Dome) in the southwest of Johannesburg is the largest and oldest meteorite crater on earth. It was formed 2 billion years ago by the impact of a meteorite with a diameter of 10 km. The radius of the crater is 190 km. A 50 km long, semicircular structure is visible today. Today’s center, the so-called Johannesburg Dome, contains granite stones that are over 3 billion years old. The crater thus provides a unique insight into the deeper layers of the earth’s crust.

Vredefort Dome: facts

Official title: Vredefort Dome
Natural monument: Annular ridge 48 km long and 16 km wide around the city of Vredefort near Johannesburg; largest and oldest meteorite crater in the world (formed about 2 billion years ago) with a diameter of 380 km; semicircular structure as the central part of a deeply eroded, complex impact structure; also numerous types of rock and mineral
Continent: Africa
Country: South Africa
Location: Vredefort, southwest of Johannesburg
Appointment: 2005
Meaning: Unique opportunity to study the deeper layers of the earth’s crust and the evolutionary history of the earth

Richtersveld cultural landscape (World Heritage)

According to thesciencetutor, the Richtersveld in the extreme northwest of South Africa is a dry mountain desert with strong daily temperature fluctuations. It has been the habitat of the Nama, semi-nomadic cattle breeders, for 2000 years. They belong to the Khoikhoin, who, along with the San, are the indigenous people of southern Africa.

Richtersveld cultural landscape: facts

Official title: Richtersveld cultural landscape
Cultural monument: Settlement area of ​​a part of the Nama people (»Namaqualand«) of approx. 1600 km² in the south of the Richtersveld National Park (extreme northwest of the Republic of South Africa); dry mountain desert (temperatures up to 53 ° C; annual precipitation 5 to 200 mm) with unusual landscape forms and special sap and fat vegetation (“succulents”); Home of the Nama predominantly in southern Namibia with a sedentary way of life, Richtersveld area habitat of the still semi-nomadic part of the population with seasonal changes in the grazing grounds of sheep and goats for 2000 years; characteristic mobile, tent-like dwellings in the shape of a dome (»haru om«)
Continent: Africa
Country: South Africa
Location: North Cape Province
Appointment: 2007
Meaning: Outstanding evidence of a two-thousand-year-old nomad culture in southern Africa threatened with extinction; extraordinary example of a homogeneous interaction between man and nature; unique, partly threatened landscape and flora

Cultural landscape of the Khomani (World Heritage)

The Khomani people live in the north of the country in the border area with Namibia and Botswana. In the World Heritage Site, which overlaps with the Kalahari Gemsbok National Park, traces of human settlement go back to the Stone Age.

Khomani Cultural Landscape: Facts

Official title: Cultural landscape of the Khomani
Cultural monument:
Continent: Africa
Country: South Africa
Location: Kalahari, in the border area of ​​South Africa, Botswana and Namibia
Appointment: 2017

Barberton Makhonjwa Mountains (World Heritage)

Barberton Makhonjwa Mountains (World Heritage)

The natural heritage is located near the town of Barberton in the South African province of Mpumalanga and comprises about 40 percent of the Barberton Greenstone Belt, whose rock layers are among the oldest known on earth. They are considered to be the best preserved succession of volcanic and sedimentary rocks, dating from 3.6 to 3.25 billion years ago when the first continents began to form on young earth. Researchers discovered remains of prokaryotes (primitive bacteria) in the rocks and thus the oldest traces of living things on earth. In the Barberton Greenstone Belt, impact breccias (rubble rocks) were also found, which were created by the impact of meteorites and are particularly well preserved.

Barberton Makhonjwa Mountains: Facts

Official title: Barberton Makhonjwa Mountains
Natural monument: Rock formations that are among the oldest on earth
Continent: Africa
Country: South Africa
Location: Near the town of Barberton in the South African province of Mpumalanga
Appointment: 2018
Meaning: Ancient rock layers that provide information about early geological ages

Barberton Makhonjwa Mountains

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