Can rock art and tourism coexist? Can tourism raise awareness of rock art without damaging it? Two examples in Africa - Namibia and South Africa - suggest they can.
In 2017 Neville Agnew of the Getty Conservation Institute in Los Angeles organised an international colloquium on rock art in Namibia, to explore a spectrum of ways whereby rock art can be raised to a higher level of public awareness in the public and political domain with potential bearing on its preservation, promotion, and uses. The colloquium took place near rock art sites in the Brandberg and the World Heritage Site of /Ui- //aes, also known as Twyfelfontein. Whilst at Twyfelfontein, members of the colloquium stayed in the Twyfelfontein Country Lodge.
This splendid traditionally designed and constructed hotel sits above a group of large rocks adorned with petroglyphs - the rock art site known as 'Ceremony Rock'. Information about the carvings on display - their age and their vulnerability - is enough to ensure their safety with the hotel guests.
An article by Elizabeth Ofosuah Johnson on face2faceafrica.com - This South African cave hotel in a mountain with 6000 year old art pieces is one of a kind - reports on a hotel established in 1988 in South Africa's Cederberg Mountains. Located in the Kagga Kamma reserve, the Cederberg Mountain Cave Hotel offers guests comfortable accommodation whilst being surrounded by rock paintings that date back 6,000 years. The hotel provides guided tours of the rock art.
Visit the African Rock Art Archive: