Welcome to the Curator’s Bookclub 2022! Each month our curator, Kimberleigh Tommy, will recommend a favourite book. To keep up-to-date with the list follow #CuratorBookclub on our social media channels.

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I headed the Management Authority from 2000, where there was, at the time, only the idea of a World Heritage Site, which had been newly listed. The infrastructure at Sterkfontein was a tiny little museum, probably the size of the average bedroom, run by the Rotary. Maropeng had been neither conceived of, nor had land to build it on, been obtained. The roads in the area were all mostly sand.

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Arm in arm: a tribute to Archbishop Desmond Tutu’s humanity

Archbishop Desmond Tutu represented everything that is good, and principled and magnificent about humankind. South Africa, the continent of Africa, the Cradle of Humankind and indeed the whole world has lost a prime example of everything that is great about us.

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Where to buy our Curator’s favourite books!

Over the last few months, our Curator, Kimberleigh Tommy, has shared some of her favourite books.

Keen to have copies of your own? We have put together a list of where to find them. While we cannot guarantee Christmas delivery, perhaps it can be a good start to your New Year reading list!

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The notion of reconciliation

What we know for sure is that had we lived differently as a species, there would probably be no need to have a Day of Reconciliation. Because, mostly, it is a day when we remember how large the failures, the hurt, the pain and the self-inflicted suffering. This, down the generations. Never learning from our mistakes.

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We are open for the festive season!

Maropeng, the Sterkfontein Caves and the Maropeng Boutique Hotel are open for the festive season!

We are open 7 days a week until the 16th of January 2022.

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Three words you need to know this December!

We have partnered with what3words to make getting to Maropeng and the Sterkfontein Caves as easy as possible!

Technology company what3words has mapped the world into a grid of 3m x 3m squares, and given each one a unique what3words address - made of three words from the dictionary.

What does this mean for you? It is a simple way to talk about location and get you were you need to go.



I worked in the field of HIV/Aids in KwaZulu-Natal in the early 1990’s. The virus had just begun to take hold in the country but, just as it is with Covid, conspiracy theories abounded; nonsense was taken as truth; lies and distorted thinking went unchallenged.

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Why her?

Our MD, Michael Worsnip, looks back at the rationale behind the design of the ‘Genus Homo’ exhibit at Maropeng. He discusses why it was critical that South Africa’s history as well as the diversity of humanity on the planet be taken into consideration when deciding how to represent modern humans in this exhibit.

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Webinar - The age of emojis: from then to now to where we are going.

We are delighted to announce that we have joined forces with The Cradle of Human Culture, located in the Western Cape, to bring you a webinar titled “The age of emojis: from then to now to where we are going.

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PICS: Celebrating our Unesco World Heritage Sites to round off Heritage Month

South Africa is home to 10 remarkable United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (Unesco) World Heritage Sites that celebrate the country’s unique natural and cultural heritage. Here are some of our favourite photos of these must-visit places.

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Putting a face to a fossil: Meet John Gurche

We chatted to renowned palaeoartist John Gurche about his fascinating work of creating a face from a fossil. You may recognise his work from museums, publications and even some movies.

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Curator’s Book Club

Who doesn’t love a good read? Every month, I share a new recommendation on Maropeng’s social media channels in a feature called #CuratorsBookClub. You’ll be able to keep track of the growing list right here.

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Come drop in for #MagaliesRockstheCradle 2021

We have a some great events planned for the upcoming Magalies Rocks the Cradle Festival.

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How to break new ground: we hear from women in the palaeosciences

A more diverse cohort of young scientists is emerging in the palaeosciences. To celebrate #WomensMonth, we’re turning the spotlight on some of the many remarkable women who are helping us understand the mystery of our own origins. They chatted to us about their proudest moments and the challenges they face.


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A poem by Maropeng MD, Michael Worsnip


What’s on the menu for Father’s Day at Maropeng?

We’ve got a delicious spitbraai planned for Father’s Day this year. Here’s what’s on the menu.

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Five African fossil discoveries to celebrate on Africa Day

The Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site has been the backdrop of some of the most remarkable hominin fossil finds in the world. But the Cradle is not the only site on the continent that has offered intriguing evidence of life that existed millions of years before modern humans. To celebrate Africa Day, we’re looking at some of the most incredible fossil finds from this continent.

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Scientist, storyteller, textbook writer: meet our new curator

Kimberleigh Tommy’s curiosity about the past started with a childhood fascination with Egypt. The idea of piecing together the story of a people by carefully examining what they left behind was intriguing. But was this a viable career option for her? She didn’t think so. However, Tommy, now a fully fledged biological anthropologist, proved herself wrong. She has just been appointed curator at the Maropeng and Sterkfontein Caves Visitor Centres.

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Enjoy a picnic at our beautiful Stone Park

Is there a better way to enjoy Gauteng’s fresh, crisp autumn and winter days than with a picnic outdoors, under blue skies in the Cradle of Humankind? Yes, there is: enjoying a picnic that’s already been packed with delicious treats for you. Here’s what’s on the menu.

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Our curator’s farewell: it’s not a goodbye, it’s a see you later

We’re sad to see her go, but our curator, Dr Keneiloe Molopyane, is about to embark on an exciting new chapter in her career in the palaeosciences. Molopyane will be leaving her position as curator at Maropeng at the end of March to head back into academia and exploration. We chatted to her as she prepares to take the next step.

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Eat out at Maropeng this Easter

Take a break this Easter, and bring the family out to lunch at Maropeng. We have delicious lunch options at our iconic Tumulus Restaurant and the Maropeng Boutique Hotel. If you’re looking for a day outdoors, you can enjoy a delicious picnic at Stone Park.

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Introducing Dr Keneiloe Molopyane

Maropeng’s intrepid curator, Keneiloe Molopyane, has dived fearlessly into caves and oceans in search of answers to one of humankind’s most intriguing questions: “Where do we come from?” Yet, despite her adventures, she counts her journey to her doctorate as among her most daunting challenges.


Changing perspectives; creating memories: meet our world-class guides

Every year, tourist guides at Maropeng lead thousands of people along a complex and fascinating journey through the visitor centres in the Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site. To celebrate International Tourist Guide Day on 21 February 2021, we speak to three of our guides about their experiences on the job and the journey that led them to Maropeng.