By Ian Michler
Tsodilo Hills consist of a quartzite outcrop just 40 kilometres west of the main road, standing like a beacon in the otherwise flat surrounding Kalahari sandveld. Archaeological evidence discovered amongst the remains of villages here, including pottery, stone tools and simple jewellery, indicates that various groups used the hills as a trading post, stop-over point and place of abode from as olong ago as 100 000 years.
The hills, near Shakawe, are known to the local !Kung people as the Male, Female and Child, and contain over 4 000 individual paintings, at almost 400 sites, including images of humans, wild and domestic animals, and various geometric patterns and shapes.While some of the paintings may go back a few thousand years, the majority are more recent - dating to the early part of the last millennium. The most modern paintings, of white geometric shapes, are just a few centuries old.Presently, the only people living beneath the shadows of the three hills are a small extended family of Kung and a group of Hambukushu, who see Tsodilo as a sacred site, as they believe their people were lowered onto earth by the gods at this site.
The Tsodilo Hills are known to the local !Kung people as the Male, Female (seen here) and Child, and contain over 4 000 individual paintings at almost 400 different sites.
While you are in the Tsodilo / Shakawe area, why not include a 3 day River House-boat Cruise in your exploration.