January 2021 – Children in the Wilderness (CITW) is thrilled to announce that registrations for the 2021 edition of the Nedbank Tour de Tuli are filling fast, since opening in late 2020. The Tour is a multi-day mountain bike ride, with riders experiencing unspoiled wilderness areas in the three African countries comprising the Greater Mapungubwe Transfrontier Conservation Area (GMTFCA): South Africa, Zimbabwe and Botswana.
With the landmark 15th Tour being cancelled in 2020 due to the COVID pandemic travel restrictions, interest and support for this “wildest ride in Africa” have never been greater.
Not only is 2021 now the year the Tour will celebrate its milestone anniversary, it is also, remarkably, the 20th year of operation for CITW, Wilderness Safaris’ non-profit partner, which created the Tour as its primary annual fundraising campaign a decade-and-a-half ago. The Tour provides an opportunity to ride for a purpose and raise funds for CITW, whose programme helps to educate and inspire the next generation of African environmentalists and ecologically conscious leaders.
“After the profound disappointment – not to mention loss of revenue – the cancellation of last year’s Nedbank Tour de Tuli wrought, we are more ready than ever to offer riders an unforgettable and wild, two-wheel bush experience. There is a particular group of Eco-Club children in the Bobirwa area of Botswana who missed last year’s ride terribly, and we can’t wait to see their happy faces again when we pass through their village”, notes Tour Director, Nicola Harris. “What’s more, this direct interaction with the very people who benefit the most from CITW’s outreach really helps to give context to the event, and we know of a number of riders who have created additional fundraising campaigns for this year”.
Repeat Tour riders – of which there are many – already know what a treat they are in for, and they now have the opportunity to invite friends, colleagues and partners to experience an adventure that has gained global popularity. This year’s route traverses the same tripoint area as 2019’s, with the start and finish in South Africa’s Mapungubwe National Park and World Heritage Site, with two nights in Botswana and one night in Zimbabwe. The Tour runs from Tuesday, 20 July to Sunday, 25 July 2021.
Riders can look forward to tackling the iconic landscapes of the area, which produce classic riding on slick rock and sandstone ridges, through mopane woodlands and the Limpopo and Shashe’s notorious dry, sandy riverbeds. In between, flowing single track and elephant trails make for high-speed biking across this history-rich territory in South Africa, Botswana and Zimbabwe.
With many decades of experience between them, the organisers are focused on ensuring riders enjoy the impressive tented accommodation, hot showers and superb catering. In turn, the riders create lifelong friendships as their groups gather at the end of each day’s ride to recount tall tales over an ice-cold beverage in each camp’s extraordinary and remote settings.
As in 2019, any group of 12 riders which registers is eligible for one additional free space on this year’s Tour. For more details of the 2021 edition of the Nedbank Tour de Tuli, click here. You can watch the 2019 Nedbank Tour de Tuli highlights video here.