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About Adventure Guide Qualifications

In South Africa tourist guiding is a legally protected profession, making it a legal requirement to be correctly qualified and registered with the Department of Tourism to act as a tourist guide in any capacity.


In order to be a legally registered guide you need to first obtain an appropriate qualification which is accredited by SAQA and in tourism is managed by CATHSSETA.

In South Africa, National Qualifications normally consist of various Unit Standards which together form a Skills Program, National Certificate, National Diploma or Degree. It is also possible to obtain individual Unit Standard Certificates in certain cases.

Qualifications normally have a CORE component and an ELECTIVE component. If you want to be registered as an adventure guide you need to obtain one of the available CORE academic qualifications, and also at least one elective technical skills competency. At Venture Forth (Adventure Qualifications Network) we offer a core qualification known as the Generic Adventure Site Guide (NQF Level 4) Qualification and various Technical Guiding Skills Competencies.


Core Qualification (GASG) + Elective Techincal Skill (Mountain Walking Guide)

= Skills Program with Technical Scope of Practice

Once you obtain your qualification, you also need to obtain a first aid qualification. We recommend a minimum of Wilderness First Responder level as this is the minimum international norm for professional adventure guides. You can however currently register with any legally compliant first aid certification although a basic urban first aid certification is sub-standard for a professional guide.

Aside from the GASG Skills Program, we are also accredited to offer the National Certificate in Tourism Guiding, but only offer this to groups and government learnerships at this time.

Venture Forth (Adventure Qualifications Network) is the oldest, largest and most experienced guide school in Africa, having trained several thousand learners over a period of more than 20 years.

Please contact us and discuss your needs.

We will gladly offer career guidance and show you the correct path to a safe and proud adventure guiding career.


Our instructors are highly motivated and experienced adventure professionals with many decades of guiding and training experience. We understand that professional adventure business and personal adventure recreation are vastly different fields and requires different skills.

We do not offer short-cuts or sub-standard short courses. We do not promote illegal guiding.

Our aim is not to be the cheapest, but to be the best guide school offering best value to our students and producing the most skilled guides for our valued adventure industry.

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