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Explore Jozi’s arcadian heart

Get of the couch and explore the Melville Koppies.

If you’re worried about staring into the clouds of dust left behind by family and friends as they head into the bush or to the coast for the holidays, don’t be.

Visit Melville Koppies to explore some of the natural wonders in the heart of our concrete jungle.

On 22 December, a three-hour cross-koppies hike will leave from Melville Koppies Central at 8.30am.

The hike will explore this heritage site in its summer glory. The koppies form the last remnant of Johannesburg’s ridges as they were before the 1886 discovery of gold.

“Its geology goes back three billion years. Stone tools show that early Stone Age man camped here as long as 500 000 years ago, and there is a late Stone Age living floor. Within the last 1000 years, Iron Age immigrants arrived, and remains of their kraal walls can be found on the northern slopes. In 1963 an iron-smelting furnace was excavated and can be seen today,” said the koppies’ Wendy Carstens.

Carstens added that the koppies’ vegetation was entirely indigenous.

“It’s a remarkable example of the richness of highveld grasses, flowers and trees so close to a city centre. These ridges have looked like this for hundreds of years.”

Details: 011 482 4797, www.mk.org.za

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