10 - 12 April 2024


Showcasing Best Practice in the Industry

WTM Africa’s Responsible Tourism Awards champion the best work in Responsible Tourism on the continent. Join our celebration of those devoted to sustainability and consistently generate positive influence and set exemplary standards.

The primary goal of these awards is to unearth, acknowledge, and promote good practice. These prestigious awards demonstrate how businesses and destinations are fostering transformation and spearheading innovative initiatives centred around the welfare and sustainability of tourism.

See Categories below for our 2024 Awards

2024 Categories

Awards ceremony details

DATE: Thursday, 11 April 2024

TIME: 16h00 – 17h30

VENUE: Spotlight Theatre 

1. Best for Making Travel Inclusive

The travel industry lags behind other sectors in promoting inclusivity, necessitating urgent efforts to broaden offerings and take decision action. Inclusive travel guarantees a welcoming experience for all, promoting a sense of belonging and encouraging individuals to embrace novel experiences.

Judges are looking for businesses proactively dedicated to embedding inclusion in the future of tourism. Here is an indicative list:

  • Companies that cater specifically to an underrepresented demographic(s) and consider the traveller’s experience at every stage – so they know what to expect, feel comfortable and where they can prevent conscious or unconscious discrimination.
  • Businesses and destinations that offer experiences of particular interest to demographics often excluded or whose interests are ignored.
  • Those who have made meaningful changes in their business by amending or tailoring their services to ensure it is available for all.
  • Companies with progressive internal practices around diversity and inclusion ensure voices are represented by a broad demographic of people. 

2. Best for Meaningful Connections

Some forms of tourism build relationships between visitors and communities through the experiences they provide, treating visitors as "temporary residents"; they generate repeat 'guests' who will return many times, some yearly. Storytelling plays a role in creating meaningful connections. These benefit both the host and the guest. Where the local community is empowered in shaping the tourism offer, they will, as hosts, encounter tourists who value their place and what it offers. The guests have a great holiday, recommend the place to their friends and relatives and are likely to return.

GOLD: uThando South Africa

SILVER: Happy Soul Adventures

3. Best for Local Sourcing, Craft and Food

Sense of place contributes to the tourist experience. Local tastes of food and beverages, soft furnishings, and art and craft souvenirs enrich the visitor experience and the local community by creating additional livelihood opportunities. These are complementary products that grow the local tourism economy. The livelihood benefits of tourism for local communities are greater when tourism businesses, tour operators, guides, accommodation providers, restaurants, cafes, bars and tourism authorities and local governments encourage the development of local craft and food production for visitors.

GOLD: Ngwenya Glass & Tourism Authority Mauritius

SILVER: Artisans Co Ltd

4. Addressing Climate Change

Each year the impact of climate change becomes more evident and, for many, more extreme. Drought, floods, wildfires, and extreme weather conditions cause devastation for communities and businesses in destinations on all continents. The judges are looking for examples of initiatives which

  • reduce greenhouse gas emissions from transport, accommodation, attractions and tourism services in destinations, and
  • Increase the resilience of tourism businesses and destinations in the face of climate change.

The Responsible Tourism Awards aspire to recognise businesses and destinations addressing climate change and to encourage others to adapt and adopt similar initiatives. We must increase our resilience to live with climate change and reduce emissions to avoid making it worse for our children.

GOLD: Tourism Authority Mauritius & Weeva

5. Best for Diversity and Inclusion

Tourism relies on diversity. We travel to experience other peoples' places, climates, built heritage, lived culture and the world's diverse nature. But how diverse and inclusive is our industry?

The judges are looking for examples of inclusive tourism, in employment and in the experiences offered to tourists. The judges are seeking to recognise

  • tourism businesses that avoid gender, ethnic and LGBTQ+ discrimination and which employ the differently abled; and
  • businesses and destinations which have created safe and meaningful visitor experiences for women, the differently abled, LGBTQ+  and travellers from the diaspora, making accessible to all our cultural diversity.

GOLD: BirdLife South Africa

SILVER: Liveable

6. Best for Nature-Positive Tourism

Wildlife and the natural environment are important motivations for travel. Nature is essential to our industry, those who transport travellers to wildlife destinations, those who provide accommodation, and the tour operators and guides who market it and make it accessible. The judges are seeking examples of tourism businesses and destinations that reduce negative impacts and positively impact the maintenance of the natural environment and biodiversity.

GOLD: Wildlife ACT

SILVER: BirdLife South Africa

One To Watch: Cape Vulture Lodge

2023 Award Winners

Best for Meaningful Connections

  • GOLD    uThando South Africa
  • SILVER  Happy Soul Adventures

Best for Local Sourcing, Craft & Food

  • GOLD    Ngwenya Glass & Tourism Authority Mauritius
  • SILVER  Artisans Co Ltd

Addressing Climate Change

  • GOLD    Tourism Authority Mauritius & Weeva

Best for Diversity & Inclusion

  • GOLD    Birdlife South Africa
  • SILVER Liveable

Best for Nature-Positive Tourism

  • GOLD    Wildlife ACT
  • SILVER  Birdlife South Africa
  • One to Watch   Cape Vulture Lodge

Host City

Part of ATW

Register to attend WTM Africa 2024

Our 2024 content programme will be released soon. Watch this space.