Kloofing – An Awesome ISV Adventure with a Responsible Travel Ethic

by alrahmahsolutions on Wednesday, 5 September 2012

Kloofing in the amazing Blyde River Canyon (c) Jorg Schlettwein, South African Tour Leader with ISV

One of the top rated activities on the South Africa Adventure Tour programme (4.9/5) is canyoning or as we say it here in South Africa, “kloofing.”  Essentially kloofing is the art of following a mountain stream down its course by floating, jumping and swimming.

What I love about this specific activity on ISV’s programme is its stunning location. Situated in the third largest canyon in the world, Blyde River Canyon is the location for this adventure and the scenery is truly spectacular.  After a short drive from our accommodation you head up a mountain pass and get to the start point where you gear up with helmets and life-jackets. There’s no wasting time here because you basically start off with an immediate jump into the cool clear river but it is a great way to wake you up and gives you a taste of what you are about to experience! What follows is an awesome mix of caving, hiking, swimming and jumps ranging from 9 feet to the big one at the end at a height of 26 feet.

The Boabab tree at the local village at the end of the gorge © Jorg Schlettwein, ISV South Africa

The trail eventually ends at a giant Baobab tree situated in the local village at the bottom of the gorge. ISV was initially drawn to this activity because of the adventure it promised but upon further inspection found that the local community had a huge investment in this particular activity.  The “Kloofing”is held on community land in an area that has very high unemployment.  To help create economic growth in this area the operator approached the local chief to work together on creating this activity. The upper canyon is public land but the lower parts are community land so permission had to be obtained from the community. Profits are also shared between the activity operator and the local community. When ISV first site inspected the activity in 2010, we were excited by its potential, but were struck by the sheer amount of litter that clogged the canyon and were keen to see a change in this environmental ethic.  When this was pointed out, the operator and the local community combined in a joint effort to clean up the canyon which also meant their water supply was free from rubbish.

This activity is win/win all-round for ISV participants and the local community © Jorg Schlettwein, ISV South Africa

The community now have a vested interest maintaining the land and keeping it cleared of rubbish. This activity is win/win all-round with ISV participants having an awesome time, the environment benefits from being maintained and cleared of rubbish and the local community benefits from a source of income and is now invested in looking after their land.

Jörg Schlettwein Southern Africa Tour Manager

To learn more about ISV’s’ programs please visit our website or contact one of our super-friendly staff!!

 

 

 

 

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