3 year career-focused course

What is it?

A 3-year full time course with a practical focus on Conservation and Ecotourism that includes:
  • The requirements for the NQF 4 Further Education and Training Certificate: Tourist Guiding, including Nature, Adventure and Marine, with the option of adding Cultural guiding.
  • The requirements for the NQF 2 Research Assistant Skills Programme
  • Knowledge and skills relating to managing a Game Reserve or Wildlife Ranch
  • Knowledge and skills for working in the hospitality industry
  • Adventure guiding specialisations such as: River Rafting guide; Advanced SCUBA diver, Boat-Based Whale Watching and Zip-lining, among others.
  • Optional chosen cultural guiding specialisations

Who is this course for?

The ideal candidate will be between 18 and 25 years old and interested in a career in conservation and / or ecotourism

What can I do when I’m done?

This course will enable you to gain the knowledge, skills and values to pursue a career in conservation and ecotourism.
On completion of the course you will be able to:
  • Organise and facilitate creative and innovative guiding experiences in chosen areas of specialisation.
  • Plan and implement safe tourist guiding experiences, and as such, contribute meaningfully to tourism and the tourist guiding and hospitality industry
  • Organise a Nature, Marine, Adventure or culture guiding activity and programme for an identified target group.
  • Assist researchers with terrestrial and marine research
  • Assist with managing of a game reserve or wildlife ranch.

Why conservation, nature, adventure and cultural tourist guiding?

Due to a natural overlap in tourists' interests, tourist guides need to embrace relevant aspects of conservation, natural and cultural heritage, towards providing a holistic guided experience for clients. This certificate allows you the opportunity for career development through specialisation and opportunities to diversify into your own areas of interest and skill within the conservation and tourist guiding industry as a whole. The specialisation area subdivisions (nature, adventure and culture) have a high degree of regional and subject matter specialisation. All three subdivisions require a qualification, or learning programme, to meet the growing demand for this level of professional tourist guide by local and international participants. This is especially important since no similar comparable qualification exists in South Africa, providing for all three subdivisions as specialisations. This qualification is required to enable tourist guides to achieve and reflect acceptable operating standards of professional expertise. This provides a developmental goal for tourist guides at lower levels or entering the tourist guiding industry. As far as we are aware, we are the only provider offering this course as a full-time course with the opportunity to qualify as a Nature, Adventure and Cultural Guide in South Africa.

Course Structure:

Participants are encouraged to select a different type of work experience for each work experience cycle, giving them the opportunity to experience various options in the conservation and ecotourism industry.

2020 dates: Intake 2: 15 June 2020

We have a special offer for the rest of 2020!

Certifications included in this course:

  • Chrysalis Conservation and Ecotourism certificate (Nature, marine and adventure with culture as an elective)
  • Optional conversion of the Chrysalis certificate to the Further Education and Training Certificate: Tourist Guiding
  • Wilderness First Aid – level 1, level 2 and level 3
  • Marine First Aid
  • Internationally recognized snorkeling certification
  • Certificate in Terrestrial and Marine Field Research techniques

Specialisation certifications included in this course:

  • Internationally recognized Open Water and Advanced Diving Qualification
  • River rafting guiding
  • Boat Based whale watching
  • Creating a guided hiking experience
  • Camping specialist
  • Shark specialisation


  • Uniform
  • Food and accommodation at various sites (including provision up to a maximum of R 6 500 per month for paying ‘host employers’ during work experience)
  • Participants may be required to share accommodation and cook their own food depending on the location of the course and practical excursions
  • Course manuals and training materials

Not Included:

  • Prescribed books and equipment for the course such as field guides, binoculars and field equipment required for field work.
  • Food on days off
  • Accommodation and food during semester breaks


From R 126 000 per year of study. Contact us for an affordable payment option - 2020 dates:

Next intake 3 August 2020 - see our very special rate for this


1st Intake: 18 January 2021

1st Intake: 14 June 2021

Contact us for more details on this course
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