2017: 3 May, 24 May, 18 Jun, 11 Jul, 11 Aug, 15 Sep, 13 Oct, 4 Nov
Responsible tourism: Namibia desert dune safari
In the Palmwag Concession, Wilderness Safaris works closely with the Save the Rhino Trust (SRT), a highly respected NGO almost single-handedly responsible for the preservation of desert-adapted black rhino in the area. The SRT focuses on the protection, monitoring and understanding of the local black rhino population and is funded by both donations and partnerships.
Hoanib Skeleton Coast is set in one of the most fragile ecosystems in the world, and therefore the camp our guests stay in has been built with minimal impact on the environment. It is 100% solar powered and we make use of innovative eco-friendly systems to break down waste water which can then be used by plant life. We have also ensured that the design of the guest tents and main area maximise natural lighting, air movement and insulation.
Water Conservation The conservation of water is of critical importance in the environments they operate, where many local people do not have ready access to safe, clean drinking water and droughts are commonplace. They conserve water through regular maintenance to reduce leakages, fitting flow restrictors on shower heads and taps where possible, watering our gardens and grass roofs at cooler times of the day, planting only drought resistant native plants where landscaping is necessary, and implementing a guest towel re-use and water conservation programme.
Waste Water Treatment All waste water is run into a sewage systems and biologically treated as it runs through natural sand filters. The water outlets are tested regularly. In this way they can be sure that they are not introducing harmful toxins into the protected environments in which they operate.
Waste Management All of the waste produced is recycled, re-used or disposed of responsibly. In order to reduce waste, they avoid the purchase of glass bottled and tin canned goods where possible and offer our guests refillable steel water bottles in place of plastic water bottles.
Desert-adapted wildlife flourishes in both Sossusvlei and Damaraland and poaching, once rife, has stopped.
Community leaders are now the major decision makers in how the reserves are resourced and community members make up a good proportion of the ranger service that fights against poachers. Having this accountability ensures that the community understand the value of diversity and reap the rewards from our guests and the number of other visitors who stay on the reserve.
The lodges work with and employ members of the local community, not just for employment in the lodges, but in the reserve to allow local communities members to understand their environment.
To this end, a dedicated environmental team - made up of members of the local community - manage the day-to-day running of the reserve, ensuring its long-term biological diversity and sustainability.
They have in partnership with the local community developed a Responsible Code of Visitor Behaviour that is shared with guests before they go into the community for village visits so as to protect traditional cultures and minimize the impacts of tourism on living culture. They also provide guests with an Insider's Guide to Responsible Safaris which includes important cultural aspects and helps enable guests and locals to communicate.