In 2019, Jurni launched a successful social media campaign, Jurni Gems, that aimed to put South Africa’s hidden tourism gems on the international and local tourism map.
And while we announced that Micro-Adventure Tours in Johannesburg was the ultimate Jurni Gem winner for 2019, it certainly hasn’t stopped us from seeking out other unique experiences and local initiatives that have yet to become mainstream.
If you’re a tour operator, a guide, or DMC looking to partner with an SMME that will give your travel itineraries an edge in 2020, here’s our shortlist for February. We might just have found exactly what you’ve been looking for…
1) Boxing Grannies and the A-Team Foundation, JHB, Gauteng
In the midst of eGoli, is a very special gym lead by Claude Maphosa, a fitness coach, mentor, philanthropist, and founder of the nonprofit organization, the A-Team Foundation. Here, almost every day, you will find a group female senior citizens gearing up and going glove-to-glove with their trainers. As the story goes, five years back, these gogos approached Claude because they wanted to improve their health and learn how to defend themselves.
Highlight: During a visit to the gym, visitors can glove up for a tutoring session from these friendly female fighters, whose wit is as sharp as their right hook.
2) Macassar Pottery, Macassar, Western Cape
Macassar Pottery is a pottery studio and self-sustaining social enterprise founded in 2010. It is also best described as a safe space for the community youths to develop life skills through the the art of pottery-making. The business is co-owned by its employees, and the products created and sold on-site include coffee drippers, small finger bowls, plates, finger drums, flutes, handmade coffee mugs and wine glass decorations. It’s an ideal stop-in to add to itineraries that venture into the Cape Winelands.
Highlight: During their visit, guests will be treated to some local ghoema beats on the udu, and will be taken on a guided journey to discover the 300-year old roots of the community. They will also get to work with clay, paint a flute to take home and learn to play some of the instruments.
3) Green Corridors, Durban, KZN
For experiences in Durban big on social and environmental upliftment, Green Corridors is an impact-focused organisation that aims to see communities thrive in balance with the habitats around them. Their tourism experiences have emerged across river, ocean and land ecosystems linking into various social and environmental initiatives, and their community guides openly lead visitors into some of Durban’s most loved and best-kept destinations.
Highlight: One of their cultural experiences includes a visit to uMzinyathi Waterfall where a steep gorge opens into a sacred cliff-face cave, a spiritual home still used by local Rastafarians. Here, visitors will learn about their traditions and religious practices, and explore their temple, caves and rock houses laden with ancient Ethiopian writings.
4) Lungi’s Bed & Breakfast, Khayelitsha, Western Cape
Township stays are becoming an increasingly popular highlight for many Cape Town visitors, and one of the best places to experience one is Lungi’s B&B. Lungi first moved to the Western Cape in 1997 where for many years, she worked as a domestic worker in a guesthouse in Greenpoint. It was always her dream was to open a guesthouse of her own one day, and this, in a nutshell, is how the seed was planted for this lively little establishment in 42426 Sivane Street, Khayalitsha.
Highlight: During their stay, your guests can also experience a walking tour through Makhaza, the family-centered community where Lungi’s is located.