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Media Release: Mapungubwe commemorates International Day for Monuments & Sites

17 April 2013

This is a day which was declared by the International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) and is held annually around the world with different types of activities, including visits to monuments and heritage sites to promote awareness about the diversity of cultural heritage of humanity and the efforts required for their protection and conservation.

Why does MNP&WHS commemorate this day?

Mapungubwe National Park and World Heritage Site is a jewel of southern Africa. Located on the international boundaries of three countries: Botswana, South Africa and Zimbabwe, it is a unifying entity in the region. The international boundaries are marked by physiological structures, as well as the Limpopo and Shashe rivers. The Site is famous as the home of the golden rhino that was found in 1933 on Mapungubwe Hill. 

Mapungubwe Cultural Landscape is one of the few national parks where three aspects that are usually used to designate a national park are rolled into one. The Landscape, sandstone and basalt ridges remnants of long periods of weathering and erosion form into breath-taking ridges, knolls, monoliths and hills. The Park is also home to the big five but the buffalo, and many other animals that include the unique white kudu. 

The place is also a place for spiritual resonance and gives serenity. United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) listed the site on the prestigious World Heritage list in 2003 as a cultural landscape, a recognition of the remnants of the interplay of nature and culture

Although no major event has been planned to celebrate the day, SANParks encourages people to visit the Park on this day and others to experience the following, amongst others:

  • The Lost City: Visit Mapungubwe Hill, where a far developed African civilization prospered between 1200 and 1270 AD. This is the place where archeologists excavated a golden rhino and other evidence of a wealthy African kingdom.

  • The Mapungubwe Interpretation Centre: The Centre which is built near the main gate of the Mapungubwe National Park won the building of the year competition in 2009 and is home to the famous golden rhino. 

  • Wildlife and Mystic Scenery: Sandstone formations, mopane woodlands and unique riverine forest and Baobab trees form the astounding scenic backdrop for a rich variety of animal life.

The Park is open every day between 06:00 - 18:30 and can be contacted at (015) 534 7923/4.

Issued by:

Media enquiries:
Divhani Maremba
Manager: Northern Region Communications
Tel: 012 426 5170; Cell: 082 941 9980