Roar Africa

Exploring Africa Since 1688

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

National Geographic World's Top 50 Ecolodges

We're proud to report that seventeen lodges from Africa have made the latest National Geographic Adventure World's Top 50 Ecolodges list and nine of these lodges are in Southern Africa and neighboring islands.

"A decade ago, you could count the number of true ecolodges in the world on two hands. But today we are witnessing one of the most significant transformations in the history of modern travel. And ecolodges are at the center of this movement. Once located exclusively in the African bush and Central American jungles, these retreats now span nearly every ecosystem and every budget—and their mission has never been more vital. "
National Geographic Adventure

Ecotourism is "responsible travel to natural areas that conserves the environment and improves the well-being of local people" (Ecotourism Society). A good ecolodge should engage in responsible travel practices which can broadly be defined as:

1. Environment: travel that minimizes negative environmental impacts and, where possible, makes positive contributions to the conservation of biodiversity, wilderness, natural and human heritage.
2. Social/Cultural: travel that respects culture and traditions and fosters authentic interaction and greater understanding between travelers and hosts.
3. Economic: travel that has financial benefits for the host community and operates on the principles of fair trade.

The nine ecolodges in Southern Africa which have been recognized by National Geographic Adventure are Phinda Private Game Reserve (South Africa), Tswalu Kalahari Reserve (South Africa), Bushmans Kloof Wilderness Reserve (South Africa), Desert Rhino Camp (Namibia), Wolwedans (Namibia), Vumbura Plains Camp (Botswana), Zibandianja Camp (Botswana), Vamizi Island (Mozambique) and North Island (Seychelles).

Congratulations from Roar Africa!

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