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Van Wyksdorp - Klein Karoo South Africa | 2013 (1)

Publication Date : 2012-04-16
Author/s : Vernon Gibbs-Halls


Ecotourism in the Little Karoo

Ecotourism and adventure travel are among the fastest growing segments of the global tourism trade. While it is undeniable that travel uses resources and can harm the environment, it is also true that it can provide many benefits, such as supporting local economies, providing economic alternatives to exploitative practices, and spreading cross-cultural awareness. It is true that people are much more likely to protect the planet if they see it first-hand. The key is to go gently, and authentic eco tourism offers just that.

It is almost impossible to separate a tourism experience in South Africa from a nature experience and specifically to this area.  So rich is the Garden Route & Klein Karoo in scenic beauty and wildlife, that these facets remain the strongest motivation for overseas tourists to visit this region.

As an eco-destination, South Africa has an enormous responsibility.  The international definition of the word eco-tourism implies far more than merely a nature-experience.  The word environment in its broader context has come to include the diverse community activities and cultures of a country’s inhabitants, as well as its scarce and sensitive natural resources.  Eco-tourism implies tourism practices that would benefit all concerned parties rather than benefit some concerns and neglect others.  The term “eco-tourism” has therefore come to include concepts such as planning before development, sustainability of resources, economic viability of a tourism product, no negative impact on either the environment and local communities, responsibility for the environment from developers, the tourism industry and tourism, environmentally friendly practices by all parties concerned and economic benefits flowing to local communities. 

The naturally diverse Garden Route and Klein Karoo are fantastic destinations for the keen eco-tourist to explore. With ever growing numbers of “eco-options” available, visitors can enjoy a wonderful holiday, whilst helping to ensure the sustainability of the local environment and communities, always making sure to travel the true eco-way and “Take only pictures, leave only footprints”. 

With stunning natural landscapes and an abundance of uniquely African wildlife, it is no wonder that several “Eco-Lodges” have sprung up around South Africa’s Garden Route and Klein Karoo to accommodate the responsible eco-tourist. Another important facet to the eco-tourist’s holiday is ensuring that the effect on nature’s creatures is kept to a minimum.  Once again the Garden route and Klein Karoo provide plenty of options for wildlife viewing with minimal impact. With wildlife safaris proving to be one of the most popular activities here, several operators in this malaria-free area offer guests safaris in reserves where conservation and ensuring the way of life for the magnificent animals of the African veld are a top priority.

Eco-tourism is not only about watching the wildlife, it’s also about giving a little something back to the local environment and community.  On offer in the Garden Route and Klein Karoo are a range of tours and activities where travellers are given plenty of opportunity to help boost the local economy and contribute to conservation efforts. A tour of a local township is a great way to experience how daily life is for many millions of South Africans, and gives visitors the chance to see and contribute to the many vital community projects that are bringing about a real positive change.

Keywords:

ECOTOURISM. KLEIN KAROO, VANWYKSDORP

Citation :

COPYRIGHT | vanwyksdorp.com | Klein Karoo | South Africa

KINGDOM / PHYLUM
Animalia, phylum Arthropoda
CLASS / ORDER / SUB ORDER
class Insecta
order Lepidoptera
Heterocera Rhopalocera
SUPERFAMILIES
Hesperioidea Hedyloidea Papilionoidea
Papilionidae, Pieridae, Lycaenidae, Riodinidae, and Nymphalidae
AUTHOR / COPYRIGHT
Author : James Smith
Photography : Dean Jones
Video : Malcolm Johnson
Copyright John Smith

 

ingdom Animalia, phylum Arthropoda, class Insecta, and order Lepidoptera. Generally, the order Lepidoptera is broken down into two sub-orders: Heterocera (the “varied-antennaed” moths) and the “club-antennaed” Rhopalocera, the sub-order to which the butterflies belong. The Rhopalocera sub-order includes 3 superfamilies: The true butterfly superfamily contains 5 families of butterflies: Papilionidae, Pieridae, Lycaenidae, Riodinidae, and Nymphalidae.

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