Godumodumo Dinosaur Centre to attract tourists

27 September 2021

As a world class and state-of-the art interpretive centre, the Godumodumo Dinosaur Centre will serve as an iconic tourist attraction modelled on the narrative interpretation of the paleontological, archaeological and geological evidence found at the Golden Gate Highlands National Park, in the Free State.

Tourism Deputy Minister Fish Mahlalela on Sunday visited the Golden Gate Highlands National Park as part of the National Department of Tourism’s activities to commemorate Tourism Month across the country.

This visit comes as the construction of the Godumodumo Dinosaur Centre is at its tail end.

The dinosaur centre is a legacy project that was funded by the department through its Tourism Infrastructure Development Fund in 2018.

“The MOU between the department and SANParks has been a strategic partnership that has birthed the incredible Dinosaur Centre and many other significant tourism infrastructure projects at the South African National Parks (SANParks),” Mahlalela said.

“This partnership has been in existence for decades and it has been successful, especially because our mandates coincide with one another to promote the conservation and preservation of our national heritage but also the elevation of active tourism amongst our local citizens and international compatriots.”

Chief Financial Officer at (SANParks), Dumisani Dlamini, said the dinosaur centre is one of many major initiatives that have been funded by the department on SANParks, all of which amount to an estimated total of R435 million.

Some of the key partnership projects include:

• The Southern Most Tip Centre in the Western Cape;

• The Big Tree Development at our Tsitsikama National Park;

• The Dinosaur Centre;

• The extension of the Addo Elephant Rest Camp in the Eastern Cape;

• The Agulhas Lighthouse Precinct Development, also in the Western Cape;

• An innovative Youth Centre soon to launch at the Mapungubwe National Park; and

• The EPWP program that serves to conduct maintenance across national parks.

Dlamini said the discovery of dinosaur eggs is a marvel in South Africa, and it means even more that these eggs were found at Golden Gate Highlands.

“SANParks is confident that the centre will provide the most ideal platform to educate visitors especially young learners about dinosaurs and many other interesting attributes of the Golden Gate Highlands.

"This massive research facility is at its tail-end phase where visitors and students from all over the world will be able to learn more about the study of archaeology and palaeontology.

“The construction is on track and we hope to launch the centre as soon as the end of this financial year. SANParks looks forward to partner with the Department of Tourism on more exciting projects in the future and trusts that this centre will enhance the visitor experience in Golden Gate," Dlamini said.