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Welcome To The Malapa Museum Experience

The Malapa Museum Experience is located at the heart of the UNESCO Cradle of Humankind World heritage site, just thirty minutes from Johannesburg. Situated within a 9000 hectare nature reserve and adjacent to the Cradle Boutique Hotel, the Malapa Museum Experience takes visitors on a journey into the past, exploring some of the most important discoveries that have made this region famous for helping us understand humankind’s deep African origins.

Visitors to the Malapa Museum Experience will explore the geological origins of the region and gain a deeper understanding of the three million year fossil bearing history of this wilderness situated at the heart of the World Heritage site. Visitors will also learn about such famous fossils as Australopithecus sediba. They will also view reconstructions of the ancestor of wild dogs, false sabre tooth cats, and giant hyena's that once roamed the dolomitic hills of the highveld and whose fossils have been found in the caves of the region.  With films, interactive displays, dioramas and reconstructions of the landscape and animals of the past, the Malapa Museum Experience is a not to be missed introduction to our deep human journey.

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The Experience


Travel Back in Time

Visit some of the lesser known fossil sites of the region, touch actual fossil bearing rocks millions of years old, and view reconstructions of what life was like in the ancient past. Learn about the landscape and region while viewing the largest 3D map ever created of this region at the heart of the Cradle of Humankind!

The Skeleton Room

View famous fossil human relatives found at sites in the Cradle.  See how different scientists and artists interpret what our ancestors actually looked like while viewing the latest discoveries.

Theatre Experiences

Visually explore the geological origins of the region and the history of discoveries that have changed our understanding of human origins


The Science Behind Sediba

Australopithecus sediba has been named one of the most important fossil discoveries of the twentieth century.  Come explore the science behind this ancient human relative and learn how sediba fits into our family tree.

Science in Action

Experience seeing an actual fossil from the Cradle being prepared live in an in our working fossil preparation laboratory.  Maye you will be there for the next BIG discovery!

Fossils in Popular Culture

Did you know that sediba plays a part in Marvel’s X-Men?  Or that fossils from sites in the Cradle are part of the movie King Kong - Skull Island?  Learn more about these famous fossils roles in popular culture and how they have helped make this region famous across the world.

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Schools and Special Events

Book with us

Night at the Museum

Do you want a one-of-a-kind experience?  Host your next corporate or private event with friends in the Malapa Museum Experience.

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For larger school bookings and special discounts, or to see if your school qualifies for FREE tickets to the museum experience, contact us directly.

Private Viewings

Contact us for a private viewing with friends and family.

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Other Experiences

Book now to Explore

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The Malapa Tour is an exclusive, private guided tour in open game drive vehicles that affords guests the unique opportunity of experiencing, firsthand, active fossil digs in the heart of the Cradle of Humankind. Two world famous sites — Gladysvale and Malapa — are key attractions visited on this tour.

They are situated within the Greater Cradle Nature Reserve which comprise the core of the UNESCO-designated Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site.

The Malapa Human Origins Tour is the only private guided tour designated to conduct an exclusive and unforgettable journey of storytelling as you walk in the footsteps of ancient human relatives and learn more about the story of human origins, as well as learn about the geological interactions that led to the Cradle of Humankind being a famed repository of hominin fossils. The reserve is almost 9,000 hectares in extent and protects some of the largest and most pristine areas of the high altitude dolomitic grasslands — which are second only to the Cape Floral Kingdom (Fynbos) in terms of floral diversity.

This protected area is also home to the leopard, brown hyaena and antelope, like the magnificent eland, blesbok, kudu, blue wildebeest and red hartebeest. Amazingly, all of this is within sight of the second largest urban area on the African continent! The area is an ancient landscape, a truly ancient geology protecting and slowly revealing the ancient origins of humankind.

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Visit Us

* OPENING SPECIAL: R80 for Adults, Pensioners and Children R60

Suitable for All Ages

Approximate time for the Experience: 1 to 1 ½ hours


R160 for non-SADC residents *

R120 for SADC adults *

R80 Pensioners *

R60 Children

Tickets available at the Hotel or Museum

100% of the proceeds of the museum experience go to the Lee R Berger Foundation for Exploration and the Motsetse Foundation, supporting science, exploration, conservation and education



Buy unique souvenirs of your visit, including one of a kind merchandise only available at the Malapa Museum Experience Shop

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COVID Protocols

This museum experience  is fully COVID compliant. 
Masks must be worn at all times.
Social distancing protocols are in place.
Sanitising stations located throughout the experience.

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Contact Us

Cradle Boutique Hotel, Route 540, Kromdraai Road, Cradle of Humankind Johannesburg, 1739, South Africa

087 353 9599

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