World Heritage Sites in South Africa

iSsimangaliso (formerly Greater St. Lucia) Wetland Park

(26.85 S 32.10 E)

iSsimangaliso Wetland Park consists of thirteen contiguous protected areas with a total size of 234,566 hectares. The site is the largest estuarine system in Africa and includes the southernmost extension of coral reefs on the continent.

Robben Island

(33.80 S 18.37 E)

Mandela was imprisoned here.

Fossil Hominid Sites of Sterkfontein, Swartkrans, Kromdraai and Environs

(25.92 S 27.78 E)

The Taung Skull Fossil Site, part of the extension, is the place where in 1924 the celebrated Taung Skull - a specimen of the species Australopithecus africanus - was found. Makapan Valley, also in the site, features in its many archaeological caves traces of human occupation and evolution dating back some 3.3 million years.

Ukhahlamba/Drakensberg Park

(28.77 S 29.00 E)

Mapungubwe Cultural Landscape

(22.22 S 29.14 E)

One thousand years ago, Mapungubwe in Limpopo province was the center of the largest kingdom in the African sub-continent, where a highly sophisticated people traded gold and ivory with China, India and Egypt.

Protected Areas of the Cape Floral Region

(34.17 S 18.38 E)

Eight areas are included in this listing:

Useful links:

Vredefort Dome

(26.977 S 27.396 E) --
satellite image

The world's oldest and largest visible meteor impact crater.

Richtersveld Cultural and Botanical Landscape

(28.600 S 17.204 E)

ǂKhomani Cultural Landscape

(-25.688 S 20.375 E) -- satellite view

This vast desert area has been associated with the former San hunter-gatherers since the stone age. It is located amongst the sand dunes of the Kalahari Gemsbok National Park.

Barberton Makhonjwa Mountains

(-25.974 S 31.014 E)

The Barberton Makhonjwa Mountains represents the best-preserved succession of volcanic and sedimentary rock dating back 3.6 to 3.25 billion years, when the first continents were starting to form on the primitive Earth. It features meteor-impact fallback breccias resulting from the impact of meteorites formed just after the Great Bombardment (4.6 to 3.8 billion years ago).

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Lynn Salmon <>{

Last updated: January 5, 2023