World Tourism Day is celebrated each year on 27 September every year to spread awareness about the importance of tourism and its impact on our society. The primary reason behind the celebration of this day is to increase the awareness of the importance of tourism and demonstrate its cultural, social, economic and political values across the world. World Tourism Day was first celebrated by United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) in 1980.
What is Tourism and more importantly Ecotourism?
Ecotourism is a form of tourism involving responsible travel to natural areas that strive to conserve the environment, and improve the well-being of the local people. The objective may be to educate the traveller and to provide funds for ecological conservation, which will directly benefit the economic development and political empowerment of local communities.
Mozambique is an Eco-Tourism destination in Africa.
But why is Tourism important?
Tourism boosts the revenue of the economy, creates thousands of jobs, develops the infrastructure of a country, and plants a sense of cultural exchange between foreigners and local citizens. The number of jobs created by tourism in many different areas is significant.
Mozambique as a Tourist Destination
Mozambique is a country rich in its African cultural heritage which is reflected in its cuisine, music, and arts. This, together with its warm tropical climate, extensive coastline, white sandy beaches, fresh seafood, Marine Parks and the ruins from the colonial-era is a must see destination.
More specifically the coastal town of Vilanculos is a vibrant African town with a rich flora, fauna, and cultural heritage, dense coastal vegetation and spectacular views of the Pearl of the Indian Ocean that all form part of its primary attractions.
Nicknamed the ‘Pearl of the Indian Ocean’, the Bazaruto Archipelago is a top travel destination for anyone heading to Mozambique. This part of the Indian Ocean is best known for world class scuba-diving and the diversity of sea life. It forms part of the Bazaruto National Park, with its 5 islands, which is one of the largest marine-reserves in the Indian Ocean.
Enriching the lives of the local people
We are so fortunate to be surrounded by Africa’s wild beauty and the kind and wonderful Mozambican people. We believe in giving back to those in need around us through various initiatives including the resources and time of our Santorini team and owners as well as monetary support to education institutions. Through our various initiatives we aim to leave a positive footprint in the lives and land of this Mozambican coastline.
For every night spent by our guests at Santorini, 1% of revenue is donated by Santorini to our Santorini Footprints Projects.
Celebrating our staff
At Santorini, we are more than just a team. We are a family of talented, diverse individuals. We believe that every part of our team is as important as the next. Each person with their own history, their own unique qualities and dreams. All of our staff are locals from the nearby town of Vilanculos.
Our local workforce is made up of 38 Mozambican Residents. As Vilanculos does not offer any hospitality training facilities, all of our staff training is done on site.
We proudly support our Santorini family members by ensuring that our employees have access to the training they would like to pursue and providing them with the ability to progress within each department and beyond. Here are some of our success stories.
Izidine started as a Scullery assistant and showed a great interest in cooking. He started assisting the chefs with preparing jams and desserts. Izidine has now been fully trained and is our private Villa chef.
Calistro who is our current duty manager, started as a waiter and worked his way up to his current position. Calistro was assisted in becoming computer literate which not only assists him in his new role but also beyond.
Jorge started as a casual garden worker at Santorini and was soon offered a permanent gardener position. Zivane was promoted to Scullery assistant and assists with baking breads as well as other kitchen duties. He is now receiving training to become a chef.
Izidine joined the team as a painter and was promoted to maintenance assistant after showing a great work ethic and a sense of responsibility for his duties. He certainly has a future in a front of house department position.
Pedro started as a Chef in our Staff kitchen and was promoted to a housekeeper. He showed an interest in front of house and began assisting with stock controlling duties for the Front of House department. Pedro has received training with English language skills and has now become one of the hosts.
Guests can make a difference too
Our guests can also make a contribution by packing for a purpose.
We are proud members of Pack for a Purpose, an initiative that allows travellers to make a lasting impact in the community at their travel destination. All contributions to the projects we support will make a priceless impact in the lives of the local children and families.
Guests can also leave any sun cream or sunhats behind when they leave to support LUZ. Santorini will donate these to the local community affected with Albinism in Vilanculos to help protect them from the extremely harsh Mozambican sun. We have a dedicated box for LUZ donations in our gift shop and we try to do weekly drop-offs depending on how full our box is or how urgently they are in need of items.
Without Tourism, we would not be able to help the community, create jobs and make a difference in the lives of the local people. And this is why we celebrate World Tourism Day every year!