Human Origins Tourism in Mossel Bay: Visitor numbers double - by Martin Hatchuel
Mossel Bay’s Point of Human Origins Experience has already hosted more than two and a half times as many visitors during this year’s visitor season than it did during the same period last year.
The organisers attribute the increase of 160% partly to marketing - but largely to our very human desire to know about the origins of our species and our behaviour.
The Point of Human Origins Experience is a discussion and guided tour of Mossel Bay’s Pinnacle Point Caves - which have revealed the earliest evidence for modern human behaviour.
The tour has drawn attention from across the globe. “Besides South Africans, we’ve hosted visitors from Australia, the USA, Sweden, Denmark, Canada, Norway, Angola, the UK, the Netherlands, and Germany,” said tour leader Dr. Peter Nilssen.
He said that visitor comments after the tour “are always glowing, sometimes even embarrassingly so.”
In a personal note to Dr. Nilssen, Professor Roseanne Diab, the CEO of the Academy of Science of South Africa and Emeritus Professor in the School of Environmental Sciences at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, wrote, “Now that I am back from Mossel Bay I wanted to express my very sincere thanks, on behalf of our group, to you for the wonderful tour. We thoroughly enjoyed the presentation and learning more from you and of course the views and the caves themselves were an experience to cherish. Thank you for sharing your enthusiasm and knowledge with us and we shall certainly spread the word about this very special site.”
Writing on the Point of Human Experience’s Facebook page, local resident Jake Nel said: “Thank you for such an amazing experience - back to the past with the eyes firmly placed on the future. Your dispensing of information regarding the caves and the history of our species was to say the least brilliant. Will definitely recommend tour to all who visit Mossel Bay.”
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