Winter is in full swing and will be with us for some time. But while it may be icy out there, that’s really no reason to hibernate. You’re invited to come out and play. Come and visit the Cradle of Humankind to try out the following five fun things to do this winter:

1. Explore Maropeng and the Sterkfontein Caves

Maropeng is like the grand elder in the family we should all visit once in a while for some sage advice. At this world-class attraction you will get to see incredible interactive exhibitions about the history of the Earth and humans, fascinating stone tools and lifelike replicas of hominids, and go on an underground boat ride inside the Tumulus building. A tour inside this edifice is not only a chance to explore the origins of humankind, but it can give you a sense of where we come from and help shape your perspective about the world we live in today.

But that is not all. There are also some fascinating fossils to see at another visitor centre just 10km away. The Sterkfontein Caves are a tourist attraction famous for the significant pieces of a critical history puzzle discovered inside their chambers. Take a fascinating educational tour through the caves led by one of the attraction’s friendly, knowledgeable guides.

(Image: Maropeng)

2. Go out for a great meal

You might feel a little exhausted after exploring the Maropeng Visitor Centre and the Sterkfontein Caves, so how about a meal break? There are several restaurants to choose from, depending on your taste.

For delicious treats that will quickly recharge your batteries so you can resume your adventure, try the Carnivore Restaurant in the grounds of the Misty Hills Country Hotel, Conference Centre & Spa in Muldersdrift. Though the eatery specialises in a wide variety of foods with meat in them, there are also options for vegetarians.

The Bush Whackers Pub & Venue in Krugersdorp is another great destination for some mouth-watering dishes. This is a friendly and family-orientated establishment that also caters for kiddies’ parties.

If a real culinary adventure is what you’re looking for, the Bidon Bistro on the grounds of Jexter Farm, Muldersdrift, is a country restaurant offering friendly service, amazing vistas and classy food.

3. Go on a thrill ride

Now that you’ve had your fill, get ready to strap up and go on the slide of your life with the Ama Zwing Zwing Zipline Tour.

Floating over breathtaking surroundings hanging from the longest slide of 240m is an incredible rush of adrenaline that causes your body temperature and heart rate to increase. The amazing views you will be looking down on will totally make it worth it.

Don’t feel like getting airborne? That’s okay, because another highlight awaits on the ground in the form of horseback rides at Shepherd’s Fold Stables, Harties Horse Trail Safaris and Saddle Creek Adventures, all offering a variety of activities for all ages and occasions.

4. Explore the area’s history and culture

There’s fun to be had indoors as well if you make time to visit the Dietmar Wiening Gallery and see the amazing works of this leading bronze sculptor of birds and marine life.

If your outing is going to extend to more than just a day trip, the whole family will enjoy relaxing at Glenburn Lodge & Spa in the Zwartkops Mountains (which also has a conference centre for business gatherings and team-building exercises). The hotel is also famous for its fabulous Sunday lunches.

5. Meet the animals

Experience the thrill of witnessing wild animals at various destinations in the Cradle of Humankind.

The Bushbabies Monkey Sanctuary is a safe haven for orphaned and abused animals, with the aim of providing the opportunity for primates to live as they would in the wild.

Fancy you some felines? Then make sure you also stop by the Ann Van Dyk Cheetah Centre, which aims to promote conservation through education and raising public awareness around the world’s fastest mammal on land.

See? You can make the most of the winter by immersing yourself in all these incredible experiences and activities while looking forward to warmer weather in spring. In the meantime, let these awesome adventures in the Cradle of Humankind create valuable, heart-warming memories of a lifetime.