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The Lydenburg Museum

The Lydenburg Heads - found in Lydenburg, Mpumalanga, South Africa, in the 1950'sThe Lydenburg Museum is a small museum dedicated to the display of the cultural history and human heritage the Lydenburg area in Mpumalanga, its mission as a service for tourists as well as for schools, the general public and the scientific community.

Exhibits include the Lydenburg Heads – 7 intricately carved ceramic heads dating back to the Early Iron Age – around 490 AD, which were found on a farm in Lydenburg in 1957. The heads on display are casts, as these heads are considered National Treasures. The original heads are on display at the National Museum in Cape Town.

The story of the discovery of the heads is almost as fascinating as the heads themselves. The first pieces were discovered by a 10 year old child playing on his father’s farm. This child later went on to develop an interest in archeology, returning to the farm as an adult to find the rest of the pieces we have today. It was thanks to Ludwig von Bezing and his enthusiasm for scratching about in the dirt that the we have some of the unique cultural heritage of the Lydenburg area of South Africa and the Iron Age Bantu tribes who lived here.

Other exhibitions go back as far as the Stone Age and Pedi, Ndebele and Afrikaner cultural items are also exhibited, including some the famous Long Tom Cannons that were a feature of the Anglo-Boer War.

A great feature about the Lydenburg Museum is that it is situated at the entrance to the Gustav Klingbiel Reserve, so you can combine a visit to the museum with some excellent game viewing in the scenic reserve.

Getting there: From Gauteng, take the N4 going East into Mpumalanga. Continue to Belfast. Here, take the R540 going towards Dullstroom. Continue through Dullstroom. The road becomes the R36. Take this road into Lydenburg. Here, take the R37 (Long Tom Pass) going towards Nelspruit. The reserve is on your left-hand side just after exiting Lydenburg.

More info on the town of Lydenburg More info on the Highlands Meander area

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