South Africa's 8 World Heritage Sites

Last updated: Aug 30, 2017

Did you know that South Africa is home to 8 UNESCO World Heritage Sites? Spanning from the south of Great Zimbabwe to the tip of the Western Cape, visiting these sites is the perfect excuse for your next roadtrip. Here's a list of all 8 and where to stay nearby.

1. Fossil Hominid Sites of South Africa, Gauteng

More commonly known as the Cradle of Humankind, the Fossil Hominid Sites of South Africa has produced a massive amount of hominin fossils. Some of the finds even date back to 3.3 million years ago, making the fossils some of the oldest ever found.

You can visit the Maropeng Visitors Centre to learn more about the amazing finds in the area and get a good understanding of the history of our planet.

Read an article on our visit to the Maropeng Visitors Centre.

Where to stay:

The Rabbit Hole Hotel, Krugersdorp

No8 Guest House, Krugersdorp

Or browse options in Magaliesburg.

2. iSimangaliso Wetland Park, KwaZulu-Natal

iSimangaliso Wetland Park is made up of a wide selection of breathtaking flora and fauna including three major lake systems, Africa's largest estuarine system and 526 bird species. If not just to say you've visited South Africa's first World Heritage Site, iSimangaliso natural beauty, diversity and uniqueness is a must-see.

Read an article on our visit to the iSimangaliso Wetland Park.

Where to stay:

Leopard Corner, Greater St Lucia Wetland Park

Flamingo Holiday Flats, St Lucia

Or browse options in the St Lucia

3. Cape Floral Region Protected Areas, Western & Eastern Cape

Including national parks, nature reserves, wilderness areas, State forests and mountain catchment areas, the Cape Floral Region Protected Areas is home to extraordinarily high diversity and endemism. This ultimate biodiversity hotspot not only is beautiful to look at, but also has an economic worth of over R70 million a year! Floral gold, anyone?

Where to stay:

Langeberg Guest Lodge, Swellendam

Sandveld Country Cottages, Piketberg

4. Robben Island, Western Cape

More than just a tourist visit, Robben Island stands as a testimony to democracy and freedom in South Africa. Declared as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1999, it is a definite trip to make for locals and tourists alike.

Where to stay:

702 Canal Quays, Cape Town

Mouille Point Village, Cape Town

5. Vredefort Dome, Free State

Vredefort Dome can boast as being the biggest meteorite impact that geologists have yet found on Earth, spanning roughly 300km wide. The crater may have eroded away since its impact nearly 2023 million years ago, but the site is still a historical and archaic must-visit.

Where to stay:

Schoemanshof, Vredefort

Knopberg Self Catering Accommodation, Vredefort

6. Mapungubwe Cultural Landscape, Limpopo

Located against the border between joining Zimbabwe and Botswana, what was once the largest kingdom in the sub-continent is now a cultural goldmine as Mapungubwe Cultural Landscape. The area spans over 280km2 and shows off untouched palace sites remains, settlement area and two earlier capital sites.

Where to stay:

Mapungubwe National Park, Limpopo

7. Richtersveld Cultural and Botanical Landscape, Northern Cape

A photo posted by Yusuf Samsodien (@pah.bear) on

Richtersveld Cultural and Botanical Landscape was declared a World Heritage Sight in 2007. Not only is it home to an expansive mountainous desert, it also sustains the semi-nomadic pastoral livelihood of the Nama people.

Where to stay:

Ai Ais Richtersveld Transfrontier Park

The Beach House, Port Nolloth

8. uKhahlamba-Drakensberg Park, KwaZulu-Natal & Lesotho

A photo posted by Guillaume Fürst (@guiyomeu) on

Spanning the entire length of Kwa-Zulu Natal, uKhahlamba-Drakensberg Park includes South Africa's highest mountain range and is a truly breath-taking hike to take and sight to see.

Where to stay:

Little Switzerland Resort, Drakensberg

Berghouse and Cottages, Drakensberg