WEST COAST FOSSIL PARK
National Heritage Site declaration: 28 November 2014
The West Coast Fossil Park at Langebaanweg in the Western Cape Province, approximately 120km north of Cape Town, is a five-million-year old fossil bed that was discovered in the floor of an open cast phosphate mine in the 1960s.
Since then, ongoing excavations have amassed over one million vertebrate fossils including now extinct sabre-toothed cats, short-necked giraffes, hunting hyenas and a rare African bear.
These fossils have achieved international acclaim by scientists for their superb preservation, abundance and richness in diversity to the extent that this locality is now widely regarded as possibly the most important Early Pliocene terrestrial fossil occurrence in the world.