We are passionate about sustainable development, social responsibility and conservation.
As the caretakers of this extraordinary mountain sanctuary, we do everything we can to support the well-being of nature, our stakeholders and all our wildlife.
Our commitment to sustainable development can be seen in transforming an old Venda settlement into the renowned Venda Art Lodge, in how we have implemented a social responsibility programme and in our conservation strategy. The Lodge was a creation of our collaboration with the unique talents of local artists, Noria Mabasa and Thomas Kubayi – the Lodge is recognition of the rich culture and traditions of the local Venda people.
The commitment to sustainable development is also evidenced by Leshiba being off the grid. Our social responsibility commitment resulted in the establishment of the Centre for Indigenous Knowledge (now renamed the Luvhondo Bush Camp), which was designed and constructed using traditional Venda sustainable building methods. For many years SETA and other grant funding was secured to run skills training programmes for learners from local villages. Leshiba’s organic permaculture garden is another example of our commitment to sustainable livelihoods.
Leshiba was certified by Fair Trade in Tourism in 2009.
The Soutpansberg is one of the most bio-diverse areas in the world.
The Soutpansberg has more than twice the concentration of plant species in half the area of the Cape Floral Region and seven times that of the Amazon!
Leshiba, has over 380 different tree species which is more than the entire Kruger National Park. The natural history writer Peter Borchert states here that, “ … the Kruger National Park is a tree-lover’s heaven and has some 336 species of trees.”
We have nearly 3000 different plant types within only 6800km2 in comparison to The Cape Floral Kingdom which has 1,300 (plant) species per 10,000km2. The next most biodiverse area is the Amazon basin with just 400 species per 10,000km2!
Leshiba’s conservation strategy is based on the findings and recommendations of the late Dr Joe Venter’s wildlife research project. This strategy has since then been successfully implemented by Peter Straughan. This includes the protection of the endangered species, the management of the Anti-Poaching Unit and the management and conservation of Leshiba’s unique environment.