Lion / Löwe

Königs-Protea / King Protea

African Buffalo / Kaffernbüffel

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Climate Zones and Travel Period


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Wild Card


Money and Banks


Left Hand Driving


Conservation and Tourism


Conservation and Hunting


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Southern Africa began to place areas under the protection of the respective governments already in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.


Lion kitten in the Okavango Delta

Lion kitten in the Okavango Delta


In 1895 the former hunting area of the Zulu kings, in the hilly area west of the settlement Hluhluwe, was put under the protection of the British colonial government and is therefore the oldest existing game reserve in Africa. Indeed, one year before that happended, a region along the border to the British Swaziland, has already been demarced by the Volksraad (parliament) of the South African Republic / Transvaal, as a game reserve. But only three years after that, the old Pongola reserve was redissolved by the government. A more suitable and larger area had been found, north of Komatiepoort, along the border with Portuguese Mozambique and a protection zone for game had been established there in 1897, with the approval of President Krüger. Later, today's Kruger National Park emerged from it.


In 1907, the administration of the German protectorate under Governor Friedrich von Lindequist in South West Africa followed, with the designation of a game reserve in the area of the Etosha salt pans. At that time, the focus of the efforts was primarily on the protection of domestic wildlife. At that time, concepts for comprehensive nature and landscape protection, or for the protection of connected biospheres, were not yet conceived.


in the Rainforest National Park

between Skeleton Coast and Springbokwasser

at the Kosi Bay

Tourists in the wild: in the Zambezi Rainforest National Park - between the Skeleton Coast and Springbokwasser Gate - and on the Kosi Bay


In the meantime there are many excellent ideas and concepts all over Africa, but there are still considerable gaps and shortcomings in their implementation. Compared to other regions, a lot has been achieved in the east and south of the continent. If you compare the relevant data in the different countries, the connection between economic development and tangible successes in environmental policy immediately catches the eye. Well, this recognition is not new, but you should always keep it in mind if you want to weigh up the chances and possibilities on the one hand and possible dangers on the other. Where natural landscapes and ecosystems are destroyed, no tourism will develop that could bring money to rural areas and create jobs. However, in regions where there is no working economic infrastructure, the necessary resources to prevent the destruction of these ecosystems are lacking.

Even the simplest basics, from simple traffic and transport routes, through basic education and health care, water supply, sewage and waste disposal, to basic energy supply, costs money - no matter which concepts you pursue. The fact that people still need a roof over their heads and something to eat is an essential matter of course that well-provided people from the western prosperity zones are often no longer really aware of. This is why Europeans, very often can no longer imagine that there could be people somewhere who need to be motivated to preserve the magnificent nature that still surrounds these people in many regions of Africa.

But if the conservation and protection of intact ecosystems is a way, for the people living there to escape poverty and misery, the situation is very different. Then a sustainable way of doing work and business, that treats natural resources carefully while keeping vegetation and water supply unimpaired, becomes a real and tangible option. This person will prefer and choose the protection of a diverse fauna, through protection zones and a regulated, sustainable hunting and fishing system over the all-destroying poaching. These people are motivated. They now have a real interest in opposing the overexploitation of nature and its abundance of wildlife and the destroying of landscapes.


in the Dead Vlei / Namib-Naukluft National Park

old vertical tunnel at a Tsumeb mine / Namibia

chameleon in Etosha

wild landscapes

industrial monuments

wild animals


It may be a hobby for Europeans and North Americans to get involved in this or that “noble cause”. Whether he or she is doing this out of a "noble disposition" or just to satisfy the need for admiration, that remains to be seen. In any case, they can afford it. However, people in the rural areas of Africa can develop something that is much stronger than any idealism: an existential interest that is based on necessity. At least that's the theoretical ideal and that's what we're hoping for. (...and I think - not entirely unfounded...)

Asian charlatans and maffia gangs can pay so much for poached rhino, but by destroying the livelihoods of the local population, they are creating their own really well-motivated enemy. After all, it is not only those who work directly there, such as chefs, waiters, cleaning staff or tour guides, who make a living from a sensible tourism infrastructure. It takes a lot more, such as: farmers, workers in the food industry, technicians in all areas of water and electricity supply, workers in transport, waste disposal, health care, as well as trainers and teachers for all possible training courses - only to name just a small selection.

However, at least a certain grade of economic and political stability are the "starters", that are needed to initiate this development. In southern Africa, there are some areas where tourism has created opportunities to restore ecosystems, which before have had already been wrenched from the wild, back to their original state. One example we can admire is the iSimangaliso Wetland Park - which extends from St. Lucia in the south, up to the border with Mozambique in the north. Not everything is completely done yet and in some zones, it's intended to let the wood plantations grow to maturity before these areas can also be renatured. But what you can already see after these relatively few years is really amazing.


lion - perfectly camouflaged

Kirstenbosch Garden / Cape Town

in the Breede River valley

amimals - plants - landscapes


After a final conclusion, I want to leave it at that: Of course there were excesses and undesirable developments in the tourism industry - in Africa, as well as elsewhere. But only where there is no development at all, one can rule out undesirable developments from the outset.

We will report and comment on the tourism sector and its ecological effects on given occasions - here on this web site and as well on our Facebook page. If you are also interested in the ecological and economic connections between nature conservation and hunting - then you may also see here: NATURE CONSERVATION and HUNTING in southern Africa.