Olduvai Gorge, in Northern Tanzania is internationally recognized for Louis and Mary Leakey’s famous discoveries of early humans and magnificent antiquities documenting the evolutionary history of our stone tool – using ancestors, vertebrate fauna, and the environments over the last two million years.
Olduvai is a misspelling of Oldupai, a Maasai word for a wild sisal plant that grows in the area. The gorge is located in the Great Rift Valley, between the Ngorongoro Crater and the Serengeti National Park. It is 30 miles from Laetoli, another fossil-rich area. Olduvai Gorge was formed about 30,000 years ago, the result of aggressive geological activity and streams.The steep ravine is about 30 miles (48.2 km) long and 295 feet (89.9 meters) deep, not quite large enough to be classified as a canyon. A river cuts through several layers to form four individual beds, with the oldest estimated at about 2 million years old.
Olduvai is an important place in the world for the study of human origins and human evolution.