River Boma, for sundowners, pre-dinner drinks and conferences. Bushmans Kloof Wilderness Reserve & Retreat. Supplied to Verve, The Star, for a travel article in April 2009.

Cape Town - The African Responsible Tourism Awards 2016 took place on Thursday at the World Travel Market Africa in Cape Town.

The winners were announced at a ceremony attended by SA’s influential travel bloggers, industry experts and Minister of Tourism Derek Hanekom.

Tim Harris, chief executive officer of awards sponsor Wesgro said: “We are pleased to recognise the vision of the Award winners for providing leadership in their respective sectors throughout Africa, and effectively contributing to growing tourism in a sustainable manner. Today, we celebrate their commitment and achievements.”

The overall winner was Mara Naboisho Conservancy. The judges’ reasons for winning: “Prior to setting up Naboisho Conservancy, four years of consultation with the 554 landowners lead to 94 percent of them signing over their land to a holding company with their own appointed directors who have in turn entered into a management agreement with Naboisho Conservancy.

“The community gets direct and tangible benefits from wildlife conservation; no other activity provides as much income to as many people as Naboisho Conservancy,” according to an article on bizcommunity.com.

South Africa’s own Bushman’s Kloof won overall for Best Contribution to Cultural Heritage Conservation – supported by Sustainable Tourism Partnership Programme.

Click here for a full list of winners.

IOL