‘The Place of the Lion’ named after Tau, the chief of the Bataung people, who made his headquarters here during the 18th century. Taung became famous in 1924 with the discovery of a fossilised skull of a child. This discovery led many scientists to believe that the origin of early man was initiated on the African continent.
It was at the limestone diggings at the old Buxton quarry in 1924 that the lime encrusted child-skull (Australopithecus Africanus), belonging to an early hominid was unearthed and taken to Prof Raymond Dart. A monument to this discovery is at the site and an old mine tunnel has been opened for exploration. The Buxton quarry is no longer being mined,but remains an important scientific research site and is also a place of great peace and tranquillity.
From the limestone cliffs at the head of the valley, a constant flow of clear water flows through a succession of attractive pools in descent down to this ancient valley. Besides for its archaeological importance, the area’s magnificent scenery, Blue Pools, limestone cliffs and picturesque caves provide an ideal spot for hiking, abseiling and picnicking.
The Taung Heritage Site was awarded World Heritage Site status by UNESCO.
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