Founded in 1825, South Africa's oldest museum has excellent ethnographic displays, with displays on traditional medicine, the use of wood (used to tell the time), and African mathematics and alphabetic symbols. The Lydenburg heads, which date back to around A.D. 500, are some of the earliest examples of African art, as is the collection of San rock paintings -- a must-see if you are not able to view these in the natural "open-air" gallery of the Cederberg or Drakensberg. The natural-history side includes a few fascinating exhibits, particularly the fossil gallery, with evidence dating life back 300 million years providing valuable insight into the now-barren Karoo; and the four-story whale well, hung with two massive whale skeletons. Others, like the stuffed kwagga (an extinct relative of the zebra) foal, are simply macabre.
- © Frommer's 2013
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- Recommended 2010
- tel: 021/481-3800
- Queen Victoria Street (Company Gardens), Cape Town 8001, South Africa
- Between Government Ave. and Queen Victoria St
- Cape Town
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