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Responsible tourism Awards

New for 2014: Best for Wildlife Conservation

Best Wildlife Responsible Tourism
2014 Sponsor:

Discover Dominica

Discover Dominica - The Nature Island

Dominica is an island where unspoilt natural beauty reigns supreme. Tropical rainforests canopy the mountainous landscape, sparkling waterfalls grace the sides of cliffs, and majestic whales inhabit the enticingly blue waters encompassing the island.
Read more about Discover Dominica Authority.

New for 2014: Best for Wildlife Conservation

Best Wildlife Responsible Tourism The Best for wildlife conservation - category is awarded to a tourism business or initiative that preserves and carefully manages habitat and wildlife species.

Explained: One of two categories this year focusing on animals in tourism, the focus of Best for wildlife conservation is on holiday providers, whether operators or conservation organisations committed to the conservation of habitats and animals in the wild and using tourism to achieve conservation objectives . This might include wildlife watching experiences, nature trails, places to stay or other holidays which otherwise benefit wildlife and habitats.

Previous wildlife and habitat winners include Huilo Huilo Biological Reserve, Chile; Zealandia, New Zealand; and Great Plains Conservation, South Africa.

What the Judges want: Integration of great holiday experiences with progressive and sustainable programmes in wildlife and habitat conservation, measures of success and ideas which can be adapted and developed by tourism providers around the world.

2012 - Best for conservation of wildlife and habitats

A group or initiative working for the conservation of wildlife and/or their local habitat, such as a national park or wildlife sanctuary.

Winner: Huilo Huilo Biological Reserve, Chile
Since 2000 the Huilo Huilo Biological Reserve has conserved over 100,000 hectares of Patagonian temperate rainforest. The owners have changed the way in which they, and the local community, secure a living form this large piece of Patagonian forest, moving from logging to conservation and sustainable tourism. The judges were impressed by the scale of the transformation at Huilo Huilo.

Awards winner

Read more about our 2012 winners in the official Awards newspaper.

Previous winners

Winner: Lilongwe Wildlife Centre, Malawi
"Lilongwe Wildlife Centre is a wildlife rescue, conservation and education centre in the heart of Malawi's capital city. Fending off developers, the centre has reclaimed and revived 90 hectares of urban wilderness to provide sanctuary for rescued, orphaned and injured wild animals, and promotes conservation to locals and tourists alike. It now takes over 20,000 visitors per year, showing its value as a centre for both the people and wildlife of Malawi."

Highly commended:
Africat Okonjima, Namibia
Great Ocean Ecolodge, Australia

Winner: ZEALANDIA: The Karori Sanctuary Experience, New Zealand
With a 500 year vision, Zealandia immediately stood out as an ambitious conservation initiative which engages with tourism to secure local support. But when you're trying to return an area to a time before humans - over 80 million years ago - it is this vision that is required! This unique conservation project is already a safe haven for some of New Zealand's most endangered native species. The ecological restoration of this urban wildlife sanctuary is well underway and through the removal of invasive species has enabled the successful reintroduction of species.

Highly commended:
Steppes Discovery, UK

Winner: Great Plains Conservation, South Africa
For incorporating a range of innovative projects across five African countries. Their work in the Maasai Mara is particularly impressive, facilitating the creation of an 80,000 acre conservancy, and guaranteeing regular payment to the local communities for the use of their land for tourism purposes regardless of the number of guests. On an unequivocal basis, they provide protected revenue for the indigenous peoples of the Mara, reducing the negative social and economic impacts of tourism.

Highly commended:
Chimpanzee Sanctuary & Wildlife Conservation Trust (CSWCT), Uganda
Way Out Experiences, Malaysia, Indonesia & Borneo

Winner: Gamewatchers Safaris & Porini Camps, Kenya
For demonstrating that a high revenue, low impact tourism development approach can benefit the local Maasai, enabling them through developing conservancies and tourism in partnership with safari companies to create employment and community income and to conserve their land for wildlife.

Highly commended:
Turtle Conservation Project, Sri Lanka
Peak District Environmental Quality Mark, UK
Caiman Ecological Refuge, Brazil