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Green Flag Trails has been developed by Professor Leon Hugo from the University of Pretoria over a period of 15 years. It has been researched and well tested in the field and the information published in various academic and popular journals. Link here to list of publications.

To date over 50 multi-day trails have been audited and over 40 day walks accredited in South Africa alone.

The Hiking Organization of Southern Africa (HOSA) has been the key implementer of Green Flag Trails in South Africa under their Quality Assurance programme. With this endorsement Green Flag Trails has become the leading trail advisory and trail assessment body in southern Africa.
The system has received endorsement from the major hiking trail marketing agencies in the country: the National  Parks Authority (SANParks); provincial conservation bodies (e.g. Cape Nature and KZN-Ezemvelo Wildlife), Forestry companies (e.g. KLF, Cape Pine), Tourism establishments (e.g. Forever Resorts), major metropolitan structures, Private Tourism Resort (Forever Resorts), NGO’s and private trail owners.

International implementation and support for the system has been forthcoming from various countries such as Swaziland, Namibia, Mozambique, St Helena and Nepal