Grootbos Private Nature Reserve has claimed the title of being the overall winner of the African Responsible Tourism Awards for 2019. The awards were hosted as part of the World Travel Market Africa (WTMA) conference, and recognises leaders in responsible tourism across Africa.
Finalists and winners of this prestigious award have a passion that extends far beyond the commercial – but also focuses on the well-being of local people and communities as well as the longevity of their environments.
Grootbos was acknowledged for its substantial growth in conservation efforts, as well as its delivery across three agendas – economic, social and environmental.
These include its Football Foundation – an initiative which offers positive role models for local youths – which reaches 9 000 youths each year.
The Two Oceans Aquarium has also been chosen as the gold winner at the awards, for the passion and dedication from its staff and volunteers. It claimed this prize in the “attractions” category.
Western Cape-based tourism destination !Khwa ttu also walked away with the title of “Best Cultural or Heritage Experience” at the African Responsible Tourism Awards 2019.
The !Khwa ttu San Cultural & Education Centre situated an hour from Cape Town’s CBD on the West Coast’s R27 main route, is a non-profit tourist destination which celebrates the San culture and spirit – both the past and present – by educating the general public about the world of the San, providing training to the San, restoring and protecting the cultural heritage of the San, and promoting the long-term financial sustainability of San development in Southern Africa.
“I am extremely proud to have accepted this Gold Award on behalf of !Khwa ttu,” says Michael Daiber, General Manager of !Khwa ttu. “All nominees, finalists and winners should be proud to be part of the Responsible Tourism Awards as it means they have been recognised as leaders in increasing positive economic, social and environmental impacts and have also reduced negatives ones.”
This year’s winners include:
Overall Winner – Grootbos Private Nature Reserve (South Africa)
Best for Resource Management
Gold: Table Mountain Aerial Cableway Company (South Africa)
Best Responsible Attraction
Gold: Two Oceans Aquarium (South Africa)
One to watch: Panthera Africa Big Cat Sanctuary (South Africa)
Best Responsible Cultural or Heritage Experience
Gold: !Khwattu San Cultural & Education Centre (South Africa)
Silver: WOWZULU Isandlwana (South Africa)
Best for Habitat and/or Species Conservation
Gold: Grootbos Private Nature Reserve (South Africa)
One to watch: Great Plains Conservation Sapi Reserve
Best for Community Benefit
Gold: Dorobo Tours and Safaris (Tanzania)
Silver: Ultimate Safaris //HUAB Under Canvas (Namibia)
One to watch: Anvil Bay (Mozambique)
Best for Global Goals Reporting
Silver: Two Oceans Aquarium (South Africa)