Recreation in natural areas is an excellent way of reconnecting people with the environment. Besides the educational function, it is also a possible income stream for farmers.
Avitourism, or birdwatching, has the potential to provide farmers with an additional source of revenue, write Dr Adam Viljoen and Christelle van Zyl, researchers at North-West University’s Tourism Research in Economic Environs and Society.
Instead of competing with the giant wine brands, Jacques and Saretha Conradie take advantage of the location of Vogelsang farm to put their wines and estate on the map.
The Khomani San of the Kalahari are revered for their intimate knowledge of bush lore. Now they’re practising these skills commercially and offering hunting packages on the vast tracts of land they own around the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park. In so doing, they are creating sustainable livelihoods for their community, too.
Johann Erwee of Kuduwane Game Lodge provided Gerhard Uys with insights into what it takes to keep a small hunting operation economically sustainable, and its environment ecologically sound.
EcoTraining, a South Africa-based company, has helped more than 11 000 people from around the world qualify as nature guides, and its graduates are sought after by the ecotourism industry. Its courses are run in Africa, Asia and Australia, India and Nepal.
Experience South Africa’s national parks when they are at their best this coming year, says Taryn Arnott van Jaarsveld and René de Klerk.
In the final article of this four-part series, Julinda Schroeder examines what to take into account when planning pricing, food preparation, accommodation, and a marketing strategy. Some of these have legal requirements; all require a systematic approach and attention to detail.
Once you have conducted the necessary feasibility studies and determined the exact format of your agritourism business, the next step would be to decide on an appropriate business structure for the venture.
Developing an agritourism operation may present a viable way to increase your farming income, while still maintaining normal farming activities, but it may not be suitable for every farm or farmer. Julinda Schroeder reports.
Agritourism can offer farmers an ideal avenue for diversifying their agricultural enterprises while earning additional income. In a four-part series, Julinda Schroeder examines the advantages and disadvantages of establishing a tourism venture on a farm, as well as the legal, health and safety, and business aspects of such an enterprise.
Lakenvlei Forest Lodge in Mpumalanga, is situated in a 4 500ha pine plantation near Belfast, and offers a truly laid-back holiday experience.