Inscription as a World Heritage site in 1999 and declared National Heritage site in June 2002.

Makapan is a paleontological site of international significance and is also part of the World Heritage Site of the Cradle of Humankind. Situated in the Waterberg northeast of Mokopane in the Limpopo Province, the site plays an important role in our understanding of human evolution. The network of limestone caves have yielded thousands of fossil bones, including A.africanus and other mammals. It also contains a remarkable unbroken sequence of archaeological remains from the Early Stone Age through to the recent Iron Age, and some of the earliest evidence of the controlled use of fire by our ancestors. The caves are also the site of the clash between the Boers and Kekana people in 1854. After attacks on the Voortrekkers at Moorsdrift, Chief Mokopane (Makapan) and his people, 3 together with their herds of cattle, were besieged in one of the caves. The siege lasted almost a month with thousands dying from starvation and dehydration.