Andrew Flatt, marketing manager for Chobe Game Lodge in Botswana, shares his thoughts on responsible tourism and what makes his lodge a sustainable destination.
RESPONSIBLE TOURISM IS IMPORTANT BECAUSE here in Africa, we find ourselves not only responsible for but custodians of great cultural and natural gems. What this means for us, at Chobe Game Lodge, is that we have a responsibility to empower the people of Botswana and help them to learn and understand how and why to value and protect the natural environments in which they live and operate.
TRAVELLING RESPONSIBLY MEANS contributing to active and innovative change in the way tourism operates. What you see here may not be as it appears now in 10 years’ time. By adopting more sustainable approaches to our operations, you are not only helping to preserve the natural world around us, but you are helping people experience nature in some of its truest forms.
THE GROWTH OF GREEN TRAVEL IN AFRICA IS encouraging but needs support. The support needs to come from the travellers. What I have experienced around Africa is that the safari industry, is largely demand driven. The industry and those in positions to shape it are constantly monitoring and accessing the demands of their guests and travel partners to provide experiences that will match these and ultimately, bring them success. For the most part, operators in Africa all understand and would love to adopt more green initiatives into their operations, but the driving force needs to be a responsible demand for more sustainable operations from the travellers themselves.
YOU SHOULD VISIT AFRICA BECAUSE it has everything. Culture, wildlife, beaches, cities, unique experiences, investment opportunity, innovation and most importantly – soul. The tourism industry in Africa is rapidly growing and the human potential that is available within the industry is second to none. A continent as diverse and culturally rich as Africa has everything going for it. Couple this with all the natural and man-made wonders that it offers, and you’ve got a figurative ‘gold mine’ of experiences waiting to be explored.
We are extremely proud to be home to Africa’s first all-female guiding team – which has actively challenged and shaped gender norms in the guiding field.
CHOBE GAME LODGE IS proud of our numerous sustainable and responsible practices. We have an electric fleet of game drive vehicles and boats (just under half of the entire fleet); a solar field which is responsible for charging the electric vehicles and supplying approximately 20-25% of the lodges power needs. We are extremely proud to be home to Africa’s first all-female guiding team – which has actively challenged and shaped gender norms in the guiding field. We support many local initiatives in surrounding communities. We actively reduce our waste through our Biogas food waste plant, our glass crushing facilities and our state-of-the-art grey water treatment plant. Even our Chobe Boardwalk is made from recycled timber and plastic!