We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Incredible museum, world class!”

Maropeng Visitor Centre
Book In Advance
More Info
US$196.88*
and up
Cradle of Humankind Tour from Johannesburg
More Info
US$254.59*
and up
Cradle of Human Kind Tour and Lesedi Cultural Village Day Tour from Johannesburg
More Info
US$97.30*
and up
Full-Day Cradle of Humankind Safari Tour
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Reviewed 8 December 2013

This place blows you away, it is not only great fun, but well-designed and an incredible museum about mankind. Do not miss it if you come to Johannesburg!

Thank Hooggenoeg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tony_Rubin, Managing Director at Maropeng Visitor Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 11 December 2013

Dear Gerhard

Many thaks for taking the time and trouble to review your visit to the Maropeng Visitor Centre.

We are pleased that you had an enjoyable experience and hope to welcome you back again in the future

Kind regards

Tony

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a ReviewReviews (603)
Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year
Language
  • More languages

458 - 462 of 603 reviews

Reviewed 7 December 2013

The Cradle of humnankind is a world heritage site of considerable size (47,000 hectares) relatively close to Johannesburg.

Maropeng, which means 'place where we come from', is aply named but it is worth noting that this is a visitor centre and not one of the primary sites in the area where fossils have been found. It's an introduction, but you would miss out on the real visit if you only went there and not also, for example, to the Sterkfontein Caves nearby. In fact, if you were pressed for time, I'd suggest doing the caves not Maropeng. Here's why...

Well set out and easy to find, and set in typical, beautiful Gauteng rolling hills (with lovely red soil), the actual facility consists of a confused mix of some really good exhibits and some strange design. The good stuff is the clear and unambiguous presentation of palaeontology, the story of life on earth (fundamentalist Bible believers and creationists will have their views well and truly trashed) and the development/evolution of the human species are well covered. For some reason after a 10 minute intro from one of the guides, they have built into the visit a quasi fairground boat-ride through a winding tunnel, and an odd, 5 meter path through a revolving "vortex" which makes you feel dizzy. It also makes you scratch your head. What was the point of that? After the vortex comes a series of interactive anthropological exhibits, video shows and a room with some real fossils. Then you are out into the open air at the back of the building. Actually, this was the nicest part, lovely views, and fresh air.

Despite the intrinsic interest in knowing how far back humans have been around, and how we all originate from Africa, there's not much reason to stick around at Maropeng for more than an hour. One gets the impression that Maropeng is a showcase site, somewhere visiting dignitaries and go to for photo-ops, and also a place to take groups of school-kids for some hands-on education. I've not problem with either, but if you want something more than that, you'll have to move on to other places.

3  Thank Chris D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tony_Rubin, Managing Director at Maropeng Visitor Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 11 December 2013

Dear Chris D

Many thanks for taking the time to review your visit to the Maropeng Visitor Centre.

Yes, it is a Visitor Centre, designed to give visitors an understanding of our Origins, and to provide an educational experience.

If one was to spend time reading all of the information inside the Exhibition, it would take almost 7 hours, but we really do not expect everyone to devote so much time to Maropeng alone.

You are correct - the Sterkfontein Cave is in the heart of the Cradle of Humankind, and has been worked by Scientists for more than 60 years, yielding famous finds, like Mrs Ples and Little Foot.

Your comment about the Boat Ride and Vortex are noted and the Tour Guides will be reminded to inform Guests of their significance. Boat Ride - understanding the elemental forces of life, "water-fire-air-earth". Vortex - a fun depiction of the "Big Bang theory"

Kind regards

Tony

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 December 2013

In a country where the disparity between rich and poor is so shocking, how can you accept prices that clearly is only meant for the rich? Only wealthy middle to upper income groups can afford such prices. For us: two adults and two teens the entry fee alone was more than R 700!!!
Sad sad sad

Kobus Nel

2  Thank JacobusNel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tony_Rubin, Managing Director at Maropeng Visitor Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 3 December 2013

Dear Mr Nel

Many thanks for taking the time and trouble to post your views on TripAdvisor.

Maropeng has to sustain itself as a business, which I am sure you understand.

As part of our Corporate Social Responsibility, we provide special Rates to Schools that visit us during the year, we also provide sponsored entrance to our Visitor Centre to Schools that qualify through our Education Trust. We have developed, at considerable cost, a Resource pack that is aligned to the School curriculum, this pack is provided to Schools at no cost.

I sincerely hope that your experience at Maropeng was a fun and educational one.

Kind regards

Tony

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 November 2013

Carefully planned and organized with exciting revelations and information. Accessible and interesting to everyone interested in life.
Had a snack outside which was nicely done and the service was quick.

Mostly underground with the exit taking you to another area with an amazing view.

Thank Carl A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tony_Rubin, Managing Director at Maropeng Visitor Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 25 November 2013

Many thanks for taking the time and trouble to post your review of the Maropeng Visitor Centre.

We are pleased that you had an enjoyable experience and hope to welcome you home again in the future

Regards

Tony

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 October 2013

While there was nothing wrong with the centre, it's really more geared towards school children and possibly young adults. Many of the exhibits are clearly intended for children to interact and learn with. There are definitely a few interested exhibits that adults can also appreciate, but this is definitely better if you are bringing your children.

2  Thank Matry0shka
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tony_Rubin, Managing Director at Maropeng Visitor Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 24 October 2013

Dear MatryOshka

Many thanks for taking the time and trouble to review the Maropeng Visitor Centre.

Your comments are important to us and will be used when our facility upgrade takes place in 2014.

Kind regards

Tony

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers who viewed Maropeng Visitor Centre also viewed

Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site, Greater Johannesburg
Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site, Greater Johannesburg
 
Johannesburg, Greater Johannesburg
 

Been to Maropeng Visitor Centre? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing