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Origins Centre Museum

Corner Yale and Enoch Sontonga Roads | University of the Witwatersrand, Braamfontein, Johannesburg 2050, South Africa
+27 11 717 4700
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Africa is where our ancestors evolved into human beings; it’s only fitting then that the bustling metropolis of Johannesburg, South Africa, is where the Origins Centre Museum has been established. Conceptualised by a team of academics and designers from Wits University, the museum aims to provide visitors with a unique experience of Africa’s rich, complex heritage. The Museum boasts an extensive collection of rock art from the Wits Rock Art Research Institute (RARI), affording visitors the opportunity to view the earliest images made by humans, found in South Africa. Combining cutting-edge technology with the creative vision of some of South Africa’s foremost artists, the museum’s exhibits take visitors on an extraordinary voyage of discovery, which begins with the origins of humankind in Africa, and then moves through the development of art, symbolism, and technology on the continent. The Origins Centre Museum restores the African continent to its rightful place in history – at the very beginning of mankind’s journey to humanity. We are also home to a vast array of palaeoanthropological, archaeological and genetic materials charting the origins of humankind. These include ancient tools, artefacts of spiritual significance to early humans and examples of the region’s striking rock art. Visitors to our museum can expect to take follow an 80 000-year path in search of the art and culture that has inspired human innovation, as well as delve into the fascinating beliefs of the ancient San, experiencing ritual such as hunting and the trance dance. Audio guides come with the price of admission and are available in six languages – Zulu, Sotho, English, Afrikaans, French and German.
  • Excellent52%
  • Very good35%
  • Average11%
  • Poor2%
  • Terrible0%
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Hours
Hours Today: 10:00 - 17:00
Suggested Duration: 1-2 hours
LOCATION
Corner Yale and Enoch Sontonga Roads | University of the Witwatersrand, Braamfontein, Johannesburg 2050, South Africa
CONTACT
Website
+27 11 717 4700
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"human evolution"
in 9 reviews
"audio guide"
in 8 reviews
"wits university"
in 6 reviews
"ancient rock art"
in 3 reviews
"homo sapiens"
in 3 reviews
"pre history"
in 2 reviews
"san bushman"
in 2 reviews
"interesting displays"
in 3 reviews
"human kind"
in 3 reviews
"book shop"
in 2 reviews
"south africa"
in 11 reviews
"hop on hop off bus"
in 4 reviews
"subject matter"
in 2 reviews
"on display"
in 3 reviews
"worth a visit"
in 5 reviews
"archaeology"
in 9 reviews
"cradle"
in 14 reviews
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1 - 10 of 178 reviews

Reviewed 4 days ago

The museum is very interesting, but because of construction, it's very difficult to actually GET to it. And, no one in the area - including people who work there or the bus driver that dropped us off, knew where the heck it was located. So...More

Thank 1CZ1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 week ago

Going there is not a problem, gaining access to the premises and parking are a major issue. Once in, the directions around the facility are lacking and you are left with a lost and confused feeling.

Thank Ary v
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 week ago

Even if you are not a total evolution and paleoanthropology nut (like me), the clear, hands-on displays of the Human Origins Center will give you a clear handle on our ancient past...seeing the beautiful Univ. of Witwatersrand campus is an added plus.

Thank debrak899
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 2 weeks ago

This center explains human origins and hosts some impressive fossils. I have been here twice and will continue to visit each time I am in South Africa, whether just flying through or staying on.

Thank CathleenKenyon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

I would not have known this place existed if it wasnt for my Sowetan friend. We spent a long time in here as there is so much to see, in this part of the Witts University which is a museum on the development of Homo...More

Thank elouise36
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

Visiting this museum is a worthwhile way to spend an hour or two in Jo’burg. It provides a well designed overview of the recent evidence that modern man originated in Africa. There are some interesting artifacts, visual displays and videos covering the pre history of...More

Thank Nina F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

I thoroughly enjoyed visiting the museum. They had historical artifacts and did a fine job explaining the history and the culture of the San people. They have a nice cafe onsite and a large gift shop. Bonus points for calling a a driver for me...More

Thank ImeldaMario
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 June 2018

The Origins Centre is on the Wits university campus and you are given an audio guide and a brief overview before you start. The aspects on human origins were interesting, but the real strength of the museum is through exploring the history and cosmology of...More

Thank davet65
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 February 2018

It's a bit hard to find but then I easily spent a few hours in the museum. Before entering the museum, the lady at the bookshop explained to me what I would see and what I could expect from the museum. It is partly about...More

2  Thank cheuk yu c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 February 2018

Origins provides an in-depth view of the archaeology and people of ancient South Africa. The displays are interesting and attractive. The museum is set inside the Wits campus. There are no signs outside the campus and hardly anyone in the area have ever heard of...More

Thank Myrna G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Questions & Answers
Peter N
2 July 2017|
AnswerShow all 2 answers
Response from JNinSA | Reviewed this property |
It is 80 Rand including an audio guide.
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SpokaneJan09
21 July 2015|
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Response from deboraflowers | Reviewed this property |
Yes. The bus stops at the University of Witwatersrand entrance. This also allows to see what one of the most prestigious universities in South Africa looks like.
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