Explore the Diamond Route

Owned by companies traditionally associated with diamond mining – namely De Beers, E Oppenheimer & Son and Ponahalo Holdings – the Diamond Route refers to a series of properties that have been set aside for conservation and tourism. Many have accommodation, ranging from luxurious lodges to camping, and offer a range of wildlife and outdoor activities. more

Dinokeng’s Responsible Tourism, Gauteng

Dinokeng is a destination that has it all. Just west of Pretoria, it has a large Big Five game reserve, it has authentic experiences in townships, rich birdlife, quaint villages like Cullinan and plenty of accommodation. Now it has another asset – its great feel-good factor thanks to its responsible tourism credentials. more

De Zeekoe Fair Trade Farmstay, Oudtshoorn

Close to Oudtshoorn you’ll find a farmstay that boasts rustic accommodation as well as luxury, that is ethically run and where you'll see plenty of birdlife. The most compelling attraction, though, is the famous habituated meerkats. Go and watch them wake up one morning. more

Bontebok and blesbok

Bontebok and blesbok are two similar but distinct antelope species that came close to extinction. These colourful beasts – especially the bontebok – owe their continued existence to a few stubborn landowners, some fences and one of the first examples of a South African conservation ethic. more

Dolphin spotting in South Africa

Dolphins in South Africa’s waters are protected by some of the strongest cetacean conservation laws in the world. There are several species, but only three occur so close inshore that they are reliably seen. They include the famous bottlenose dolphin, the beautiful common dolphin, and the shy humpback dolphin. more

South African food conservation

South African food conservation is more relevant now than any time in our country’s past. Conserving South Africa’s food resources, indigenous ingredients and traditional cooking methods is vital not only for future generations but also to ensure that travellers get a true taste of our land, seas, cultures and history. more

Southern right whale conservation

Southern right whales were so-called because they were the ‘right’ ones to hunt. Their tendency to move slowly and live near the surface also makes them perfect for whale-watching, either boat-based or from the shore. Every year thousands swim up from Antarctica to enjoy the spa-like conditions of the southern Cape. more

Table Mountain Marine Protected Area

The Table Mountain National Park Marine Protected Area (MPA) is possibly the most dramatic seascape in the country. The marine park curves around the long, thin Cape Peninsula. The two great oceans – Indian and Atlantic – mingle their waters all along this coast, adding to the spectacular diversity of this region. more

The giant quiver trees of Namaqualand

Giant quiver trees (called Aloe pillansiiuntil they were recently designated a subspecies of Aloe dichotoma) are critically endangered. Victims of plant collectors, goats and climate change, these magnificent specimens can be seen in northern Namaqualand and the Richtersveld, in South Africa's far north-western corner. They are distinctly different from their shorter cousins. more

Flowering aloes

The Aloe ferox – also known as the red or bitter aloe – is a blessing in winter. With its crimson flowers, it brightens the scenery of the dry inland areas of the Eastern Cape. The medicinally potent sap is sustainably harvested to produce a wide range of cosmetics and health products. more

Blue duikers

Blue duikers, with their otherworldly little Javanese faces and secretive ways, are among the smallest antelope in the world. Hardly larger than a scrub hare, they live a secretive life in forests and thickets. But there is a place where you’re practically assured of a sighting. more

Knersvlakte

The Knersvlakte, about a three-hour drive north of Cape Town, is a particularly fascinating portion of that well-known biodiversity hotspot, the Succulent Karoo. Sprawling roughly between the towns of Vanrhynsdorp and Bitterfontein, the Knersvlakte’s characteristic white quartzite gravel conceals plants with an indomitable instinct for survival. more

Caracals

Caracals, which are very similar to the lynx cats found in the Northern Hemisphere, live secretive lives, mostly emerging in the early dusk to hunt. They are fearless and athletic, their well-developed hindquarters aiding their jumping and climbing abilities. These cats think nothing of bringing down prey far larger than themselves. more

Eksteenfontein in the Richtersveld

The little town of Eksteenfontein in the Richtersveld World Heritage Site has a fascinating history. Those who ended up here were victims of racism and Apartheid rules. In the 1990s, fortunes changed as the people of the Richtersveld realised how valuable and sensitive the local plant life was. more

Sustainable seafood

Sustainable seafood is only a text message away. If you find yourself in a seafood restaurant and want to make an eco-smart choice by ordering something sustainably harvested, all you have to do is consult the Southern African Sustainable Seafood Initiative – and it’s at your fingertips. more