Kenya’s Ol Pejeta was on Saturday named Africa’s leading conservancy in this years’ World Travel Awards in a ceremony held at Durban, South Africa.
The conservancy bagged the award in what has become known internationally as the “Tourism Oscars”.
The World Travel Awards serves to acknowledge, reward and celebrate excellence across all sectors of the global travel and tourism industry.
Ol Pejeta’s human capital manager, Schola Waihenya said: “This prize validates our belief that conservation can and does work best when it benefits local communities.”
“We’re the largest black rhino sanctuary in East Africa, which comes at a high price, yet we still managed to reinvest $750,000 into community projects last year.”
The conservancy received 81,000 visitors last year. It has 10 tented camps, hotels and lodges.
Ol Pejeta offers lion tracking to guests. The conservancy is home to the two last remaining northern white rhinos on the planet and chimpanzees rescued from the illegal pet trade.
Revenue from tourism is reinvested in school infrastructure and mobile health centres in remote villages to support local farmers.
Kenya was well represented at the awards. Kenya Airways scooped Africa’s Leading Airline for Economy and Business Class award and Diani Beach won Africa’s Leading Beach Destination.
Destination Kenya scooped Africa’s Leading Destination Management Company award and Masai Mara is Africa’s Leading National Park.
The WTA ceremony in Durban marked the sixth leg of the WTA Grand Tour 2018 – a series of regional events to acknowledge the world’s outstanding travel brands.
The regional winners will progress to the Grand Final 2018, which will be hosted in Lisbon, Portugal, on December,1.