Tourism contributing to Sustainable Development Goals – Examples from Africa

Sustainable Tourism Measures in the Focus – At the high profile lab session during the European Development Days 2015 (EDD15) we have talked on the topic “Culture, the forgotten development lifeblood: How to leverage the benefits of culture for sustainable development?“ with Louis Michel (Minister of State & Member of the European Parliament), Peter Debrine (Prog. Specialist Sustainable Tourism, UNESCO), Mario Lucio Matias de Sousa Mendez (Minister of Culture, Cape Verde) and Marie Chantal Uwitonze (African Diaspora Network).


Today we present the projects of our estimated partner Fair Trade Tourism (former Fair Trade Tourism South Africa). One of the tourism sites they certified is:

The Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site in SA

The Cradle of Humankind is one of eight World Heritage Sites in South Africa, and the only one in Gauteng. It is widely recognised as the place from which all of humankind originated.

The 47 000-hectare site has unearthed the best evidence of the complex journey which our species has taken to make us what we are – a place of pilgrimage for all humankind. It is not only a place of ongoing scientific discovery into our origins, but also a place of contemplation – a place that allows us to reflect on who we are, where we come from and where we are going to-

The Gauteng Provincial Government is the designated Management Authority responsible for developing and protecting this extraordinary site for posterity. There are 13 excavated sites which have been identified within the area. These have already been internationally-recognised in the World Heritage Site listing, and have now individually been declared as national heritage sites by the South African Heritage Resources Agency (SAHRA). The careful management of these unique sites is a clear priority if the site is to be preserved and sustainably utilised.

The Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site and Dinokeng are initiatives of the Gauteng Provincial Government to establish geo-spatial tourism destinations in the north-west and the north-east of the province, close to the densely populated metropolitan areas of Johannesburg, Tshwane and Ekurhuleni.

The Gauteng Provincial Government – through Blue IQ, its strategic economic investment programme – has invested over R250 million in roads and bulk infrastructure in the two destinations in order to boost tourism development.

There are 663 tourism attractions in the two destinations (a remarkable growth since 2003 when there were only 163 tourism establishments).

The projects promote economic growth and social upliftment, relieving the burden of poverty, particularly for historically-disadvantaged communities living in and around the two destinations.

For more information on Maropeng please visit

For more information on Fair Trade Tourism please visit

Author: Susy Karammel

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