Cape Town Tourism adopts a penguin on World Tourism Day

September 28, 2010

Monday, September 27, was World Tourism Day, a day earmarked by the United Nations World Tourism Organisation to celebrate the benefits of tourism. The focus of this day in 2010 was to raise awareness around the connection between tourism and biodiversity.

As one of Cape Town’s key natural and cultural assets, biodiversity has long been the city’s most crucial visitor drawcard. As such, the local tourism industry needs to play an increased role in preserving it. 

This World Tourism Day, Cape Town Tourism partnered with SANCCOB, the Southern African Foundation for the Conservation of Coastal Birds, to highlight the plight of the African penguin, which are now considered endangered.

The Cape’s penguins are an iconic symbol of tourism in the region, a sign of the health of our marine biodiversity, and a much-loved attraction at Boulders Beach for children and adults alike. SANCCOB’s work aims to protect and conserve Southern Africa’s coastal birds, like the African penguin, for the benefit of present and future generations, and Cape Town Tourism commends SANCCOB for their rescue, rehabilitation and educational efforts.

SANCCOB’s CEO Venessa Strauss commented that, “For the past 42 years, SANCCOB has played an active role in the conservation of Southern Africa’s vulnerable seabirds, especially the endangered African penguin, through successfully rehabilitating them and releasing them back to their wild colonies, conducting research that informs decision-makers, and educating the general public about matters that affect the health of the marine eco-system. We invite each and every South African to join us in our work to save these precious seabirds.”

CEO of Cape Town Tourism, Mariëtte du Toit-Helmbold, concludes, “Cape Town Tourism is calling on the tourism sector to rethink their relationship with their environment, both in terms of the people within our communities and the actual ecological landscape. We are asking tourism players to plan and act in ways that contribute to the health of these elements and the overall strength of our biodiversity.”

Cape Town Tourism adopted a penguin on World Tourism Day and will adopt another on behalf of the member of the public who comes up with the most original name for the penguin. Visit for more information.

For more details on how to adopt a penguin, please visit


For further information about Cape Town, please contact Cape Town Tourism’s PR and Communication Manager Skye Grove,, +27 (0)21 487 6800, or visit

For more information on World Tourism Day 2010, visit

Released for Cape Town Tourism by

Rabbit in a Hat Communications
Tammy White
+27 (0)21 448 9705
+27 (0)73 202 5041

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