Tourism today is no longer just about dipping our toes into the warm waters of the Indian Ocean or basking in the breathless glory of a cloudless Barbadian sunset; more and more people are becoming aware of the underlying importance of global tourism as a means of education and unification. Travel is no longer just about jetting off to an exotic clime, but bringing part of that experience back with us into our everyday lives.
Tour operators occupy a unique and sensitive position as arbitrators between an expectant international clientele and a domestic commercial union of suppliers and employees. Tourism of course represents the overriding input to the economies of countries all around the world but as the emphasis begins to shift more and more towards responsible and manageable travel the old cut and thrust relationship some holiday companies and travel agents seemed to rely upon are being outdated.
A new discerning and knowledgeable band of travellers are emerging who not only expect a luxurious and memorable encounter but also want to deal with a company who actually expresses a vested and committed interest to the destinations they promote; who purport a true passion for sustainable and thoughtful travel and who are not simply fixated upon the commercial promise of the now.
Such a company is Mahlatini, www.mahlatini.com, Belfast based experts in luxury safaris and African travel. An online presence since 2003, Mahlatini’s commercial interests have always been managed in harmony with their on going desire to provide fundamentally responsible and mutually beneficial travel experiences. Mahlatini’s interest in eco tourism extends into every facet of the organisation’s operation with each member of the company’s employ having lived in or travelled extensively throughout Southern and Eastern Africa.
Not only is Mahlatini and member of the ATTA an association that provides a focal point for responsible tourism in Africa, but the company is also a major force behind rhino protection in Africa. Working closely with the Amakhala Game Reserve in South Africa’s Eastern Cape, Mahlatini endeavours through its resources and donations to help the reserve protect these beautiful creatures, some of Africa’s most endangered animals. Last year two of the reserve’s bulls, Chippy and Isipho were brutally killed for their horns by poachers and so now a necessary but very costly 24-hour watch program has been put into place to help guard the remaining animals from any such recurrence. Mahlatini is dedicated to the maintenance of this watch scheme and to the universal Amakhala ethos which centres on education, conservation and community growth.
With a portfolio that boasts an extensive array of luxury safaris and African adventures, Mahlatini hopes not only to ensure the trip of a lifetime for its clients but to propagate a sense of deeper appreciation and understanding for Africa, its people and its nature.