Pan Africanism: There are a whole lot of elements that make Sette Cama special, like big game on the beach; one of the wildest stretches of shoreline on the continent that’s a window into what ancient coastal Africa looked like; a last-chance-to-see and connect with a still intact western African lagoon system and the fishes and wildlife that call it home; a patchwork of tropical habitats that include endless rainforest, swamps, mangroves, and grassland savannas, and that’s just the big picture. Then there’s the little highlights like knowing that from a single vantage point you have the chance to see a breaching humpback whale and a gorilla or chimpanzee; or getting to tick-off those not easy to find critters like dwarf crocodile and water chevrotain; or having your ear canals cleaned out by the cacophony of thousands of roosting African grey parrots at sunset, and so the list goes on. But what touches most people who visit Sette Cama the deepest, is simply the feel of the place as a whole, and their leaving there knowing that such a place exists.
The Role of Pan-Africanism in Protecting Sette Cama’s Rich Biodiversity
Nothing is ever safe though, especially in Africa, and even if the law protects it, the area around Sette Cama is always under threat from those who are either greedy to be greedy or too uninformed to understand the value, sensitivity, and rarity of what they have. This is where the eyes on the ground that are the Sette Cama Adventure Lodge and African Waters staff teams help to make sure that the law is upheld and that wrongdoers are kept at bay.
Sustainable Tourism and Community Empowerment: African Waters’ Contributions to Sette Cama Village and Loango National Park
African Waters’ tourism operation based out of Sette Cama Adventure Lodge biggest, direct contributions to the greater good are through the taxes raised by our guests fishing and visiting Loango National Park. For example, for the 2022/23 sportfishing and tourism season, which ran from mid-September ‘22 to end-April ’23, we raised 66,038 Euro ( which went directly into the Gabon Parks (ANPN) treasury. On the community side, we have 71% succeeded with our philosophy of recruiting and training staff from only the communities immediately adjacent to us, and we now support half the families of Sette Cama Village. One of the positive impacts of this is that local people who might otherwise have to involve themselves in less-sustainable activities, such as commercial fishing, now have livelihoods founded upon much more ecologically sustainable and economically stable bases.
Preserving Pristine Coastlines: African Waters’ ’50 Pristine Miles’ Beach Cleanup Project
Beyond the direct positive impacts of the commercial tourism operation we also initiated the ’50 Pristine Miles’ beach cleanup project during the second half of the season and the project has progressed quickly. 9 Kilometres of beach were cleaned in a first-pass pilot, protocols were tested and learned from, and we are now in a good position from which to keep going.
Navigating Complexity and Fueling Growth: African Waters’ Success in Gabon’s Tourism Industry
Running a tourism operation in Gabon is quite honestly one of the most complex and psychologically challenging endeavours that one can take on short of running sightseeing flights to Uranus. But we are shamelessly proud of what we have been able to achieve. Best of all, our success is just adding fuel to the fire as we work hard to keep growing and building upon where we are at. Our hearts and minds are literally bursting with ideas that we will eventually all have in place that will continue to not only allow many visitors to live their dream and experience this wonderful place, but will also bring more and more good to the area.