Have you ever thought about what resources are required and used by a Game Lodge or Safari Camp?
We do, every single day. Join Mr Richard Sowry, the South African National Parks (SANParks) Section Ranger for the Kingfisherspruit Region of the Kruger National Park where our Mluwati Concession is located, as he discusses the importance of adopting the best practices approach to sustainable ecotourism in order to protect South Africa’s wildlife heritage.
20 years ago, SANParks decided to allocate 7 concessions, areas of land where there was no previous development, within the Kruger National Park for the creation of luxury ecotourism establishments that would adopt a “best-practices” approach to sustainable ecotourism. We were honoured and delighted to be awarded as the concessioners of the Mluwati Concession—a 100 square kilometre piece of pristine, thriving wilderness in the Central Region of the Park.
This public-private partnership is built on the principle of adding and creating value to a biodiverse area by building a landmark tourist destination that will generate sustainable benefits for the local community, for ecotourism, and for conservation.
In order to ensure that a rigorous standard of ecological best-practices is maintained at all times, our operations are audited twice a year by SANParks and our Section Ranger, Mr Richard Sowry. We are proud to share that all of our products on the Mluwati Concession—Hamiltons Tented Camp, Imbali Safari Lodge, and Hoyo Hoyo Safari Lodge—have consistently scored in the high 90 percentiles in all of their biannual audits.
Elements that are considered in the audits include water and borehole use, land management and rehabilitation, and other usages of the natural resources of the land. As Mr Sowry points out, tourists rarely give a moment’s thought as to what resources are required and used in order for a wildlife area to function. Though the survival of African wildlife depends on photographic and game-viewing safari options, many camps and lodges around the continent consume precious resources such as water “en masse”. As a concession, we are proud to say that this consideration is a vital aspect that shapes everything that we do on a daily basis.
In the words of Mr Sowry, “the next time you choose your wildlife destination, you should look at whether your lodge is practising responsible principles”. On behalf of the entire Mluwati Concession Team, we can assure you that we remain steadfast in our belief that successful ecotourism must generate sustainable outcomes for the environment, for the surrounding communities, and for the business. It is our honour and privilege to play a small part in preserving this iconic piece of South African heritage for many future generations to come.
As our collective society emerges out of the dark times of lockdown, we will continue to do, and enhance, our small part in helping to transform the world we live in for the better.
Wishing everyone a very happy Heritage Day!
The Mluwati Concession Team