UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Zimbabwe

There are five UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Zimbabwe. Three are cultural and two are natural.

  • Great Zimbabwe National Monument (1986)
  • Khami Ruins National Monument (1986)
  • Matobo Hills (2003)
  • Mana Pools National Park, Sapi and Chewore Safari Areas (1984)
  • Mosi-oa-Tunya / Victoria Falls (1989)

Great Zimbabwe National Monument (1986)

Located in the Southeastern Hills of Zimbabwe, the Great Zimbabwe National Monument is a cultural site listed as one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Zimbabwe. It is a ruined city with several remains from the Kingdom of Zimbabwe that flourished during the Late Iron Age. The construction of the monuments included in this site was believed to have originated in the 11th century and continued on until the 15th century. Archaeologists, however, could not determine who constructed these stone monuments.

Khami Ruins National Monument (1986)

This is another ruined city included in the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Zimbabwe. It served as the seat of the Torwa dynasty in Zimbabwe for about 200 years. When the Great Zimbabwe vanished, this city replaced its position of power. This particular site consists of 7 areas that were occupied by the royal family; meanwhile, the valleys and open spaces were occupied by commoners.

Matobo Hills (2003)

This national park is centered around Matobo Hills, which is one of the cultural sites on the list. The area is dominated by granite kopjes and wooded valleys. These hills were formed 2 billion years ago causing the granite to rise to the surface. Today, the landscape is strewn with boulders and thick vegetation on some parts. Due to the “profusion of distinctive rock landforms”, the site was recognized by UNESCO.

Mana Pools National Park, Sapi and Chewore Safari Areas (1984)

This site is a combination of a wildlife preservation area and national park. It is listed under the Natural category because it served as one of the most important refuges for eastern black rhinoceros in the continent. Because of this effort, poaching was reduced significantly in 1994. It is also home to other threatened wildlife species including Cape wild dog, cheetah, lion, leopard and brown hyena.

Mosi-oa-Tunya / Victoria Falls (1989)

UNESCO World Heritage Site in Zimbabwe

This waterfall is a natural site listed as one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Zimbabwe. It is shared with another country – Zambia – as the falls are located along the border of both countries. It is notable for producing the largest sheet of falling water. It is also double the height of the Niagara Falls in North America.

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