In the sand sea of the Sahara, stars are life. Ancient nomads used them to navigate at night, trusting the celestial bodies to lead them safely through the dunes.
When an endearing child with big wide eyes implores you to buy the shell necklace her mother made; when a friendly man in a funky bar wants you to join in the local ‘tradition’ of knocking back a shot of snake wine; or when the market stalls have an abundance of very attractive tortoise shell bracelets, hair combs and spectacle frames for sale…what do you do?
On average, three rhinos a day are being killed in South Africa – all because of a lie…
Rhinos are hunted down thanks to the mistaken belief that their horns possess properties that detoxify the body and can therefore cure anything from a hangover to serious illnesses such as cancer. And if there was evidence to support such beliefs – you may as well chew your fingernails!
The camel’s lashes drew closer and closer as he slid into sleep; my seven-year-old daughter Julie rubbed his curly-haired head as he drifted into dreams upon the sand.
My son Ben, ten, was sure he saw Jedi knights in the twisting alleyways of Morocco’s medinas, for the men’s jelebas (cloaks) looked a lot like Obi-Wan Kenobi’s.
These are memories from our Kids in the Kasbahs trip. When traveling with children, the world becomes full of wonder.
Africa is on so many travellers’ bucket lists, but that wasn’t the case for Megan Butler. For some reason the thought of being on safari in South Africa didn’t grab her, but after reluctantly agreeing to make the trip she soon got a lot more than she expected…
“After arriving in Johannesburg and then travelling by van towards Kruger National Park, my attitude was starting to change. The scenery and towns were so different from home. I sat with my face glued to the window as we approached the park and saw a wild monkey and impala. Wow – maybe this will be fun after all. Still didn’t know what to expect and couldn’t explain why I didn’t want to go.
In Africa, most action takes place on the streets and roadsides – people hawking their wares, kids running to and from school, friends hanging out just chatting. There’s always movement and there’s always food.
Day and night you’ve got people selling all types of snacks at traffic lights, on buses, at street corners and in roadside stalls. And a wealth of people buying them. For a true taste of Africa you won’t see in any guidebook, check out the following tasty treats.
“It’s difficult to describe just how vulnerable you feel when your eyes meet the unwavering stare of a predatory lion.”
With the possible exceptions of Colombia and Iran, it’s pretty hard to find a country so undeservedly beset with tourism image problems as Ethiopia. A poverty-stricken, war-ravaged dustbowl… right? Well, not quite.
Bob Geldof’s much-publicised famines are now almost 30 years past, the country has been at peace for more than a decade and its economy is one of the fastest growing in the world.
Add to this a staggering diversity of landscapes, kaleidoscope of cultures and history that tracks back to when our species first raised itself up onto two legs – and suddenly you’ve got one very surprising travel destination. And just to push the point further, here’s a further 10 facts about Ethiopia which could come as a surprise.