Mountainlands Nature Reserves benefits from a multi-level approach aimed at optimising the tourism, conservation, investment and economic development potential of the greater Barberton area.

This approach focussed on the natural attributes of the region and laid the foundation for further development which is now taking place. These initiatives and the related studies also created the base from which sound planning and developmental decisions could be made for the reserve.

The pages of this website provided an outline of some of these projects which directly impact on the reserve. For further information about the projects, reports and strategy documents can be downloaded on the links provided in this section. These studies often capture a particular planning process with recommendations made from the perspective of that process. Not all such recommendations were always accepted or implemented and additionally the vast scope of these projects often implies that many of the elements of the plans are for long term implementation. This multi-level approach is in large part responsible for the growth experienced by the local tourism economy and will undoubtedly influence the future growth that is not only expected but actively planned for.

One of the outflows of the regional approach was the inscription of the Barberton Makhonjwa Mountains on the UNESCO World Heritage list in July 2018. This World Heritage inscription is the beginning of a new era for the greater Barberton region. It not only brings international recognition but also helps ensure protection of the area in perpetuity, whilst adding impetus to the development of the region. Read more … 

Map showing how the regional initiatives overlap around Barberton and Mountainlands Nature Reserve.