Travellers often ask us about volunteer programmes on conservation. Or how they can get involved and give something back during their stay. But they only have a few days. And very few game reserves or community volunteering programmes are geared towards the shorter experience. As most programmes want people to commit to a two or three week time period. And people just don’t have that time or holiday leave.
So we were excited when we saw that the malaria-free Samara Private Game Reserve in the Eastern Cape of South Africa was bridging that gap. It has introduced a five-night conservation experience.
As you may be aware, Cape Town, and the Cape Winelands, had one of the worst droughts in recent history last summer (Nov 2017 to March 2018). Though we are in a much better position this year, we still need to be careful. So even though there is no chance of ‘Day Zero’anymore, there are still moderate water restrictions. This has an impact on both locals and visitors alike.
There are still water-saving measures in place that you should be aware of. Unfortunately it means that you won’t be able to have a 10 minute shower, but these are minor setbacks in what should be a memorable experience.
Some might assume that most lodges have ‘come to the party’ and aligned themselves with environmentally friendly practices by now. Indeed a large number of them are making strides in altering their daily operations and are minimising their impact on the environment.
But there are a few lodges who have come up with some innovative projects and sustainable practices that are worth a special mention (in our opinion!). Although there are many more we could applaud, here are a few that have caught our attention…