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Tsikoane Village Dinosaur Footprints

Leribe, Lesotho

This set of footprints is a few kilometres south of Leribe at Tsikoane village. Immediately after the Tsikoane Primary School, take the small dirt road to the right towards some rocky outcrops. Follow it up to the church. Children will vie to lead you the 1km slog up the mountainside to the minwane, in a series of caves, and a guide can be helpful here. The prints are clearly visible on the rock ceiling.

The Tsikoane Cave foot print site. There is a 2 km hike to the Tsikoane footprints, where the prints are embedded in the roof of a rock overhang. Due to the unusual formation of the prints, they have been very well preserved and are certainly an impressive sight. There is a further optional route which includes some simple rock climbing/ bouldering to a stunning view point, this is definitely worth doing if your fitness allows.

here are about six passes to the summit of the Tsikoane plateau, but because we were first heading to the Menoaneng Caves to view dinosaur footprints, we had to use the Linareng Pass.

As we walked, Ramokoane told me that they were in advanced stages of documenting the tourism attractions of Leribe to serve the interests of tourists.

To reach dinosaur footprints, we had to walk through a tough terrain. We followed treks on the slopes of the plateau, taking us through thorny bushes.

We passed a number of caves with deposits of clay on the ground.

"These are signs that people used to reside here," explained Ramokone.

The caves were also a home-based rock dassie because there were fossil-like objects that Ramokone described as urine used by traditional doctors.

We finally arrived at an impressive dark cave with dinosaur footprints; the footprints were on the roof of the cave. Ramokone described them as negative dinosaur footprints.

I counted more than 20 visible footprints; some seemed small, others looked like human hands, and one had three big fingers.

It seemed impossible to touch them because they were metres away from the ground.

Ramokone clarified that the tale of the dinosaurs was not a myth but a factual story of what happened all those millions of years ago, and the beauty of the footprints has enslaved many to visit the plateau again and again.

"The people of Tsikoane named these caves Menoaneng because of the dinosaur footprints that look like human fingers," explained Ramokone.

We continued our journey to the highest peak. We passed through dense forests, abandoned cattle posts, beautiful rock pools, ruins, and birds sitting on strange rock formations on our way to the peak of the plateau.

The highest point of the plateau was marked with a white pillory. Upon our arrival at the summit, it was evident we were destined to see gorgeous places.

Due west of the Pleateu, 12.7 kilometres away, stands the town of Maputsoe. On the east are the famous Qoqolosing Mountain and the snowcapped mountains of Leribe. The summit offers endless, fascinating aerial views.

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