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The KZN South Coast wins bid to host The Conservation Symposium in 2022

Home to rich biodiversity across land and sea, the KZN South Coast has been chosen for The Conservation Symposium which welcomes environmentally focused delegates from 31 October to 5 November. This is the first time the KZN South Coast has hosted the event, entrenching the region as a top MICE and events destination.

“We’re thrilled to announce the venues for this year’s Conservation Symposium; Premier Resort Cutty Sark and Dream Hotel Blue Marlin in Scottburgh. Located just 1.4km from each other, these venues will be the centre of our Conservation Symposium, allowing our attendees to enjoy a slice of beautiful KZN South Coast before, during or after the symposium,” commented event organiser, Freyni du Toit.

The Conservation Symposium is hosted by Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife in partnership with the University of KwaZulu-Natal, WildOceans, WildTrust, Endangered Wildlife Trust (EWT), CapeNature, Nature Environment and Wildlife Filmmakers (NEWF) and the Environmental Law Association (ELA).

“We are so excited to be welcoming some 250 delegates to The Conservation Symposium which will be held at The Premier Resort Cutty Sark and Blue Marlin Hotel,” commented Phelisa Mangcu, CEO of South Coast Tourism and Investment Enterprise (SCTIE). “This serves the dual purpose of highlighting the KZN South Coast as a key events destination, while celebrating the amazing conservation efforts and environmental significance of the region.”

Some of the KZN South Coast’s ecologically significant sites and events include:

  • Three Marine Protected Areas at Aliwal Shoal, Protea Banks and Trafalgar supporting a variety of marine species with Aliwal Shoal home to a number of the highly-endangered shortfin devil rays;
  • Six Blue Flag beaches – the highest number in the province – with two honoured for 20 and 10 years of care;
  • Several nature reserves and game reserves home to diverse wildlife and birdlife;
  • Two gorges – Oribi Gorge and Umtamvuna Gorge – that create an expansive biome supporting sensitive natural life;
  • The Red Desert, the world’s smallest desert;
  • The Mzamba Fossils and Petrified Forest – trees which were washed downriver and deposited in the area millions of years ago with marine fossil beds exposed along reefs near the Mzamba River;
  • The annual Sardine Run which is the planet’s greatest biomass migration; and
  • The annual migration of Humpback whales.

SCTIE, which is the tourism and investment arm of Ugu District Municipality in the KZN South Coast, is dedicated to promoting economic growth through innovation, investments and tourism. By hosting such high-profile events, SCTIE is welcoming new visitors to the area while also attracting new investment.

To facilitate MICE events, SCTIE launched the innovative Meeting Planner Guide at the Meetings Africa exhibition in Johannesburg earlier this year. This comprehensive guide is a one-stop directory for all business conferences, meetings, team building and accommodation requirements. It consists of a detailed list of existing MICE venues, teambuilding activities on offer, and relevant contact information.

The Conservation Symposium, which is a platform to facilitate the sharing of ideas and solutions to contemporary conservation issues in Africa, will open with a welcome ceremony at the Blue Marlin Hotel on Sunday, 30 October. In between networking and talks, delegates will also be hosted on various tours that showcase the KZN South Coast’s many eco-friendly and sustainable initiatives.

This will include a frogging tour of the wetlands from Crocworld Conservation Centre and guided walks in nature reserves including TC Robertson Nature Reserve and Vernon Crookes; snorkelling in a Marine Protected Area; a hike along part of the Umzumbe River Trail, a Green Flag Trail and viewing wild Cape Vultures at the Oribi Vulture Viewing Hide as well as a visit to Ntelezi Msani Heritage Centre.

To find out more about The Conservation Symposium, visit www.conservationsymposium.com. Tickets are available at https://conservationsym2022.dryfta.com/16274620761/calendar/register-to-attend. To book, visit https://conservationsym2022.dryfta.com/16274620761/accommodation.

For more on other upcoming events, download the free ‘Explore KZN South Coast’ app from Google Play and Apple stores; visit the ‘South Coast Tourism’ on Facebook or YouTube; @infosouthcoast on Twitter or Instagram; ‘Info Ugu South Coast Tourism’ on LinkedIn; www.visitkznsouthcoast.co.za to check out the Events Calendar, the KZN South Coast Meeting Planner Guide and more!

To access previous SCTIE press releases, visit: https://www.visitkznsouthcoast.co.za/category/press-release/

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