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Get in touch with your national heritage with National Parks Week 2017

TThis Tourism Month South African National Parks (SANParks) will be opening its 12th annual SA National Parks Week at Golden Gate Highlands National Park from 18 to 22 September 2017, giving day-visiting South Africans free access to most of its 21 national parks across the country.

This year, South African Tourism approaches Tourism Month under the lens of the I Do Tourism campaign, which seeks to make tourism everyone’s business. By rallying the whole country behind tourism the hope is to demonstrate the far-reaching impact of the tourism value chain.

Since September officially marks Tourism Month, what better time is there than now for South Africans to embrace their wild South African heritage with SA National Parks Week. By being a tourist, you are doing tourism, and by doing tourism we can all help build a better future for all South Africans.

SANParks Head of Communications, Janine Raftopoulos, on Friday said the objective of the week is to cultivate a culture of pride in all South Africans in their relationship with the country's natural, cultural and historical heritage.

"When people start to take pride in national parks, then we believe that they will start to understand the importance of conservation," she said.

Since Tourism Month 2017 places a focus on Mpumalanga, the Mpumalanga Tourism and Parks Agency’s (MTPA) will again open some of its nature reserves as part of the Mpumalanga Parks Week from 18 – 24 September 2017.

Mr Johannes Nobunga, Chief Executive Officer of MTPA, says, “We are excited that since MTPA introduced the Parks Week concept in 2015, a number of people have taken advantage of this offer. We have 11 provincial nature reserves throughout the province, which will all be open to the public during that week. This is strictly for day visitors only. We trust that the public will take advantage of this opportunity to explore and appreciate the wildlife and natural heritage surrounding some of our communities.”

South African Tourism seriously encourages the public to take SANParks and MTPA up on this incredibly priceless offer. South Africa’s national parks are the country’s pride and joy and it’s about time that people remind themselves that nothing quite beats the bush. In addition, people can also rally behind tourism by finding out more about how they can do tourism.

Below are the parks that will be open this SA National Parks Week. Get more information about exactly what’s happening at each specific national park.

Addo Elephant National Park

11 - 16 September 2016

Agulhas National Park

Dates: 18 - 23 September 2017
The Park is an open access park with no pay points. Access to the lighthouse will be included as free access.

Augrabies Falls National Park

Dates: 18 - 23 September 2017

Bontebok National Park

Dates: 18 - 24 September 2017

Camdeboo National Park

Dates: 18 - 24 September 2017

Garden Route National Park

Dates: 16 - 23 September 2017

Golden Gate Highlands National Park

Dates: 18 - 24 September 2017

Karoo National Park

Dates: 18 - 22 September 2017
***First 100 visitors per day on the Saturday (23 September) and Sunday (24 September) gain free access.

Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park

Dates: 18 - 23 September 2017

Kruger National Park

Dates: 18 - 22 September 2017

Mapungubwe National Park

Dates: 18 - 24 September 2017

Marakele National Park

Dates: 18 - 24 September 2017

Mokala National Park

Dates: 18 - 23 September 2017

Mountain Zebra National Park

Dates: 18 - 22 September 2017
***First 100 visitors per day on the Saturday (23 September) and Sunday (24 September) gain free access.

Namaqua National Park

***Excluded from SA National Parks Week

Table Mountain National Park

Dates: 18 - 23 September 2017
***Free entry excludes Boulders Penguin Colony

Tankwa Karoo National Park

Dates: 18 - 24 September 2017

West Coast National Park

Dates: 18 - 22 September 2017

|Ai-|Ais/Richtersveld Transfrontier Park

Dates: 18 - 23 September 2017

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