Friday, 09 December 2016 10:35

North Island, Seychelles, December 2016 - National Geographic has unveiled the finalists for the 2017 World Legacy Awards, with North Island being listed in the Conserving the Natural World category, recognising outstanding support for the preservation and restoration of nature and the protection of rare and endangered species. Winners will be announced at a prestigious ceremony to be held at the Palais am Funkturm, the new official awards venue of ITB Berlin, on 8 March 2017.

Since 1997, North Island, Seychelles has demonstrated that it is possible to operate a commercially successful, high-end tourism business in a remote and fragile environment in a way that not only actively rehabilitates the Island environment, but makes a difference to conserving the natural world. “We are extremely proud to be a finalist in the Conserving the Natural World category and to be recognised for our ongoing commitment to operating sustainably whilst delivering a world-class private island experience”, said North Island MD, Bruce Simpson.

“North Island has been deeply committed to driving the Noah’s Ark Rehabilitation Programme and we are thrilled to have received this prestigious recognition for our efforts”. Removing alien plant and animal species from North Island, once used as a plantation island, and replacing them with indigenous flora and fauna has helped return the Island to its original pristine state. The increasing Seychelles White-eye population and the numbers of Green and Hawksbill turtles nesting on the Island’s beaches each year are testament to North Island’s continued commitment to conserving the natural world.

The National Geographic World Legacy Awards showcase the leading travel and tourism companies, organisations and destinations driving the sustainable tourism transformation of the global travel industry. This year’s award entries spanned the planet, representing 45 countries and six continents, showcasing how sustainable tourism has no boundaries. The 15 finalists in five award categories were selected by an international team of more than 20 judges. A multi-step judging process also included on-site inspections of each finalist.

Costas Christ, Chairman of National Geographic World Legacy Awards, said, “We have reached a tipping point as more of the travel industry understands that there can be no future for tourism without sustainability, including environmentally-friendly business practices, protection of cultural and natural heritage, and tangible social and economic benefits to local people in travel destinations. Those countries and companies that understand this today will be the travel leaders of tomorrow. These 15 World Legacy Awards finalists are showing the way forward to a brighter future for people and the planet.”

For more information on the World Legacy Awards and this year’s Finalists, click here.