More than just conservation, it’s education

1 August 2012 | Leon Jamarie

Butterfly World. Photo courtesy <a href=''>warrenski</a> Butterfly World. Photo courtesy warrenski

Be sure to take time to discover Cape Town’s conservation-focused attractions while you’re visiting South Africa for the 2012 International Aquarium Congress (IAC), or encourage your partner to visit them while you attend the deeply interesting presentations lined up for the congress. We have partnered with a few African Association of Zoos and Aquaria (PAAZAB) members and encourage you to explore some of the other things to do.

PAAZAB, formed in 1989, is internationally recognised as being effective and trusted centres of animal welfare, conservation, education, research and service, and it represents the interests of bona fide zoos and aquariums on the African continent. PAAZAB currently represents 70 institutional, affiliate and associate members in 12 African countries and sees one of the primary functions of zoos and aquariums as healing the relationship between man, animal and their mutual environment.

Cango Caves

Photo courtesy <a href=''>andy jou</a> Photo courtesy andy jou

The Cango Caves are situated 29km from Oudtshoorn in the Eastern Cape, at the head of the picturesque Cango Valley. Known as an underground wonder of the Klein Karoo, the Cango Caves are situated in a limestone ridge parallel to the well known Swartberg Mountains and are renowned for their dripstone caverns, with vast halls and towering formations. As part of the Garden Route Classic Tour (excluding Cape Town), 2012 IAC delegates can explore this natural wonder.


Photo courtesy <a href=''>TheGrantPeters</a> Photo courtesy TheGrantPeters

The Southern African Foundation for the Conservation of Coastal Birds (SANCCOB) is an internationally recognised leader in seabird rehabilitation. This non-profit seabird rehabilitation centre is based in Cape Town, South Africa.

While in Cape Town for the 2012 IAC, you can visit SANCCOB for an inspirational one-hour specialist tour and get a behind-the-scenes peek into the workings of a seabird hospital, and hear about the research, education and training being done to support seabird conservation. Click here to read more about this special day tour.

More day trips for 2012 IAC delegates here.

Photo courtesy <a href=''>deshanta</a> Photo courtesy deshanta

Cheetah Outreach

Cheetah Outreach is an education and community-based programme created to raise awareness of the plight of the cheetah and to campaign for its survival. Founder Annie Beckhelling launched the project in January 1997 with just one hectare of land proved by Spier Wine Estate and two cheetahs.

It has since moved to Somerset West in the Western Cape.

Cheetah Outreach is continually evolving and taking on new challenges.

Click here to read more about the Cheetah Outreach project.

Butterfly World


Butterfly World, one of the more unique attractions of the Cape Winelands, is a tropical garden in a 1 000m2 greenhouse. This luxuriant paradise makes the free-flying exotic butterflies feel right at home.

The butterfly park is located at the crossroads of the Paarl, Stellenbosch and Wellington wine routes, near the small Boland town of Klapmuts. Just off the N1 at Exit 47, on the Route 44 (300m to the south), it is very accessible to the many tourists visiting the area.

Tropical butterflies are raised on breeding farms in countries such as Costa Rica, Philippines, Malaysia and China. Pupae are flown to display parks where the butterflies emerge into their tropical gardens. Butterfly World imports 500 to 800 butterfly pupae per week, all year round.

  • Author: Leon Jamarie
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