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South Africa's seventh World Heritage Site, the Dome shaped Bergland area, is about 120 km from Johannesburg, on both sides of the Vaal River, near the country side towns of Parys and Vredefort.
2023 million years ago, a meteorite as big as table mountain struck the earth and forever change the face of our planet. The resulting impact structure is (because of its size) best viewed from the air or from space. A small region within the Dome Area received World Heritage Status" on 14 Jul 2005.
Internationally known as the "Vredefort Dome", this impact has left a "beauty out of destruction" that is utterly breathtaking, historically fascinating and rich in a unique and diverse micro-ecosystem of fauna and flora.
With over 100 different plant species, more than 300 types of birds, over 70 butterfly species and a variety of small mammals, the site adds real biodiversity value to the area under conservation.
Welcome to Africa, AKA the motherland! Check out African Internet Radio while you're scoping the panoramas.The earliest fossil of the homo sapiens family (human beings) was found in Ethiopia, dating back more than 200,000 years. Compared to this length of time, even the "ancient Sumerians" from 6000 B.C. are drooling toddlers.Let's mention a few African heroes you may have heard of, for inspiration in the face of the continued economic inequality and violence which plague Africa today: Nelson Mandela, first democratically elected President of South Africa, who fought against apartheid and served 27 years in prison while advocating freedom and peace. Haile Salassie, Emperor of Ethiopia, who resisted Mussolini and the fascist Italian invasion of WWII, and who is worshipped as an incarnation of God by the Rastafari movement. Kwame Nkrumah, first Prime Minister of Ghana, advocate of uniting Africa in Pan-Africanism. Fela Kuti, inventor of Afrobeat music, who declared his home to be an independent state, ran for president of Nigeria, and to whose funeral ONE MILLION PEOPLE came to pay their respects.In June 2001 the African Union was formed, consisting of 53 African States organized, like in the EU, around common economic and political development.Text by Steve Smith.