Raw. Mystic. Real. This is where humanity begins


As mist rolls over water, the land wakes up. Hippos emerge, grass glints in the morning sun. Caves holding the secrets of our origins wait to be explored. The middle of Krugersdorp holds the history of humanity. This is the Cradle of Humankind, home to our roots, and Forum Homini ensures people are always coming back. Johannesburg resident Ashley Clüver is drawn to its power, returning every opportunity she has.

Clüver first visited 10 years ago. She was enamoured by the atmosphere, raw but mystic. “It’s visceral. It’s real,” Clüver says. “I feel so alive when I come here.” The Cradle of Humankind is a World Heritage Site, home to 40% of the fossils found of our ancestors. Relics dating back millions of years have been discovered there, from Mrs Ples to Homo naledi, changing the way we perceive ourselves. In Forum Homini, sandstone cutouts of early hominid feet line the pathways, progressively turning into contemporary human footprints. A giant sculpture of different shaped heads signifies our evolution. “The history of humankind is weaved into every wall,” Clüver says. “It’s a reminder of how we are all connected.”

The wild surrounds and free-roaming animals only serve to elevate the message. For Clüver, this is a place of peace, reflection, and a way for her to experience her environment on a deeper level. “Being here really makes me feel Iike I’m part of something a lot bigger,” she says. “I fall in love with South Africa every time I come here.” With each visit, the present is empowered by the past. It’s a place that will always welcome you home.