Visitors to Intaka Island double

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Date 05 April 2017
Author Liesel

The number of visitors to Century City’s award winning Intaka Island nature reserve has more than doubled since the opening of its Environmental Education Centre.
Funded by generous corporate and public donations, the Eco Centre, which includes an outdoor sustainability classroom and an indoor activity centre, opened in 2011 to help Intaka achieve its full environmental educational potential.
In 2010, the year before it opened,  a total of 7908 people visited the wetlands reserve. Boosted by the new facilities and staff this jumped to 13 321 last year.
The growth in numbers has continued in 2012 with 12 498 visitors  in the first nine months of the year, up 34%  over  the same period last year putting Intaka well on the way to achieving its 2012 goal of 17 500 visitors. To this end and to meet the growing demand for its facilities, a new outside educational  Lapa opened this month.
Overlooking the ephemeral pans, the Lapa provides an additional all-weather venue for environmental education programmes.
 This month Intaka also opened an Indigenous Educational Garden which is modelled on the garden at Green Point Common.  It  comprises three components, namely, medicinal plants, sand plain fynbos (Intaka Island has some of the last remaining  sand plain fynbos species) and water wise indigenous garden plants.
Each of the 40 odd species of plants in the Garden  have been identified with plaques and a short description.
The Garden has been established in partnership with Kirstenbosch which has provided Intaka with a number of the plants and the assistance of acclaimed botanist Dr Clive McDowell  who is also a member of the Intaka Island / Blouvlei Environmental Committee.
The Lapa and Educational Garden are situated at the foot of Bird Mountain on the 2km circular walking  trail within Intaka Island and is open to the public seven days a week from 7.30am until 5.30pm from May until end September and from 7.30am until 7pm from October to end April. 
There is a nominal entry fee of R10 for adults and R5 for children under 12 and  pensioners.  Babies under 3 years of age get in free.