Meaning ‘Place of Gold’ in Sesotho Gauteng’s extensive wealth comes mostly from mining. Since the discoveries of gold in 1886 and of the world’s largest diamond in Cullinan in 1905, the province has developed into an economic powerhouse.

But Gauteng`s history dates back some four million years. The Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site at Sterkfontein in northwest Gauteng has produced more fossils of our ancestors and their early relatives, the hominids, than any other site in the world.

Townships, battlefields and gravesites scattered throughout the province bear witness to the challenges faced by the the people of Gauteng.

See also Pretoria Monuments & Landmarks and Johannesburg Museums

Some of the important historical sites are:

Cradle of Humankind - Johannesburg
The Sterkfontein Valley landscape comprises a band of important palaeo-anthropological sites including Sterkfontein, Swartkrans, Kromdraai, Coopers B, Wonder Cave, and various others which forms the Cradle of Humankind

Constitution Hill - Johannesburg
Constitution Hill in Braamfontein Johannesburg, is home to South Africa’s Constitutional Court and also the site of the notorious Old Fort Prison Complex, known as ‘Number Four’. It was here that thousands of people were brutally punished before the onset of democracy in 1994.

Soweto - Johannesburg
– To truly understand South Africa’s turbulent past, one must visit Soweto. Here you will be shown the bullets in the walls of the Regina
Mundi Church and the Freedom Charter will be explained to you and you can muse on the young life of Hector Peterson at the very spot where he was shot.

Nelson Mandela's humble little house in Orlando West, Soweto, now called the Mandela Family Museum, is an interesting stopover for those keen to expereince a slice of authentic history on the world's most famous former prisoner.

The Freedom Park - Pretoria / Tshwane
Freedom Park is a meeting place, a venue for the gathering of clans and nations; a place to listen to the voice of silence, a place to pray; a sacred place, a step to the heavens and to our humanity.

Tswaing Meteorite Crater - Pretoria / Tshwane
Some 220 000 years ago a blazing stony meteorite the size of half a football field slammed into the earth's crust. The impact formed a huge crater, 1,4 km in diameter and 200 m deep. This crater, formerly known as the Pretoria Saltpan (or Zoutpan), is situated 40 km north to the northwest of The City of Tshwane (Pretoria). It is one of the best-preserved meteorite impact craters anywhere in the world.

Union Buildings - Pretoria / Tshwane
Set in an attractive terraced garden with magnificent views of the city, the Union Buildings were designed by the British architect, Sir Herbert Baker to accommodate the offices of the then Prime Minister, his ministers and departments, and were completed in 1913.

The Union Buildings are the administrative headquarters of the Government and still house the offices of the President. They are visible from many vantage points in the city and are visited by large numbers of visitors and tourists.

Gold Reef City - Johannesburg
Gold Reef City Theme Park offers the visitor fun, fantasy and historical fact.

Historical Sites of Gauteng Map: