Johannesburgers wanting to get away from it all tend to head northwest towards the Magaliesberg Mountains, stretching from Pretoria in the east to Rustenberg in the west. Don’t expect to see a horizon of impressive peaks: much of the area is private farmland running across rolling countryside, although there are some impressive kloofs (gorges), as well as refreshingly wide vistas. Unprepossessing as the mountain range might be, a series of caves on their southeastern (Johannesburg) side holds some of the world’s most important information about human evolution stretching back some 3.5 million years. These caves, including the renowned Sterkfontein Caves, are now protected as part of the Cradle of Humankind, one of South Africa’s first World Heritage Sites.

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