Seven Wonders status would boost tourism: MEC

iol travel oct 26 table mountain Independent Newspapers Cape Town's iconic Table Mountain, illuminated at night. File photo: David Ritchie

Table Mountain would see a surge of tourism if named one of the New Seven Wonders of Nature, Western Cape tourism MEC Alan Winde said on Monday.

“If Table Mountain becomes one of the New Seven Wonders of Nature, tourism to our destination could increase by 20 percent,” Winde predicted.

“This would generate an additional R1.4 billion in revenue every year and support employment opportunities for around 11 000 people. We must show our support for Table Mountain by voting via every means possible every day.”

Winde paraglided off Signal Hill on Monday morning in a last effort to garner votes for the mountain. Table Mountain failed to make it onto the campaign's latest top 10 list.

The list comprises the Dead Sea, the Grand Canyon in the USA, Australia's Great Barrier Reef, Vietnam's Halong Bay, Jeita Grotto in Lebanon, Jeju Island in South Korea, the Indonesian island of Komodo, Puerto Princesa underground river in the Philippines, Sundarbans delta at the mouth of the Ganges river, and Italy's Mount Vesuvius.

Western Cape cultural affairs and sport MEC Ivan Meyer said if the mountain was voted one of the New Seven Wonders of Nature it would become part of school curriculums around the world.

“Table Mountain is home to more than 2200 plant species, and houses the highest concentration of threatened species in any comparable geographic area. This is our chance to put Table Mountain front and centre on the global stage.”

Table Mountain Aerial Cableway Company spokeswoman Sabine Lehman said it was disappointing that the mountain was not among the top contenders.

Campaign spokesman Eamonn Fitzgerald said in a statement people should not take the list as the final result.

“In our first campaign for the man-made wonders of the world, many changes took place in the final week and days, so the top 10 we have announced will certainly change,” Fitzgerald said.

“With millions of votes still set to come in, finalists who are not in today's top 10 could yet make it into the chosen seven.”

People have until Friday to vote in the competition. – Sapa


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