Tourism: Latest News
Staff, 8:00 am
Nigerian novelist Chimamanda Adichie tells a TED audience how she found her authentic cultural voice — and warns that if you hear only a single story about another person or country, you risk epic misunderstanding. For example, she says all she knew about Fide, a worker in her parents’ home, was how poor he was. When she visited his village, she saw a basket his brother had made. “It had not occurred to me that anybody in his family could actually make something,” she said. “All I had heard about them was how poor they were, so that it had become impossible for me to see them as anything else but poor. Their poverty was my single story of them.”
Becca Blond, 8:08 am
A five-minute drive from Victoria Falls, Lokuthula Lodge — its name means “place of peace” — is a good fit for families. The 31 thatched-roof bungalows are made from natural materials to blend in with the environment. Warthogs, bushbuck and mongoose graze on well-manicured grounds. Guests have views of the unfenced Zambezi National Park with baobab and mopani (balsam trees). If you’re headed to this beautiful southern African country and are looking for a place to sleep – be it in Harare, Bulawayo, Hwange or Victoria Falls — we’ve got you covered. Here are 10 places to stay in Zimbabwe.
Dana Sanchez, 9:59 am
The waves seem to roll down the coast for miles. The water is cold and great white shark-infested, “but those barrels are oh, so inviting; inviting enough to forget the sharks, take the beatings, fight the current and try to pump that little rubber body of yours out the other side.” Skeleton Bay has been identified as one of world’s 10 sharkiest spots that you can’t help but surf. Its waves are “reeling, pale green lefthand zoomers that cull all nonsense and set the brain to froth overload … going and going like the Energizer Bunny.” There have been no recorded shark attacks there yet, “but ask anyone who’s surfed there and they’ll tell you: The vibe is there.”
Dana Sanchez, 2:29 pm
Prices rose even faster than in December, when inflation was 24.3 percent — the highest since January 2011 when the Arab Spring uprising was at its height. Food prices have gone up more than other goods, rising by 38.6 percent year on year. Tourism, one the main sources of foreign currency, has been hit hard by jihadist insurgency. The number of tourists visiting Egypt in 2016 was 46 percent less than 2015. This decline is attributed to Russian and British flights being suspended following the Metrojet flight crash in the Sinai.
Becca Blond, 8:01 am
Until I saw a lemur in the wild, I wasn’t sure what the fuss was about. They look cute in photos, but surely I’d be more excited to see a leopard or a cheetah than spend a day tromping through the bush looking for a small, cat-meets-monkey-type creature. Then I saw my first ring-tailed lemur. Its liquid eyes stared directly into mine before it flipped its tail and bounced away. I was hooked. Lemurs are addictive. Once you see one, you become obsessed with seeing more. Since there are 50 varieties, you can spend an entire trip rambling around the countryside trying to Instagram them all. After all, you’re in Madagascar, and safaris here often mean trekking.
Dana Sanchez, 3:39 pm
Tourists seeking an animal encounter can dive with Cape fur seals throughout the year at South Africa’s Plettenberg Bay. There’s a boat excursion to a marine protected area near Robberg Nature Reserve where visitors can jump into the water and swim with the seals — often babies, and often playful. Before you go though, definitely read the reviews at TripAdvisor. Here’s what one recent visitor said after going on this excursion: “You get super close to the seals. Sometimes when you hold still, they even gently touch you with their nose.” Not all the reviews are glowing.
Lucy Corne, 8:17 am
The last thing I wanted to do was tie up my hiking boots and climb the mountain where Moses is thought to have received the Ten Commandments. The hike is traditionally done before sunrise. We’d spent the night counting shooting stars, huddled under a rented blanket, bones chilled as only the desert can. Jews, Muslims, and Christians flock to this sacred spot. I am none of the above, and while religious sites often wow me, it is usually for their architecture. Hiking Mount Sinai was different. Orion and Sirius proved to be the best hiking companions you could ask for.
Staff, 8:01 am
Lying face-down on a stone slab, nearly naked, while a stranger thrashes at you might be a fantasy for some, but not for me. Yet I willingly signed up for the jarring experience — and, truth be told, enjoyed it. Welcome to a Moroccan hammam. Traditional bathhouses are a staple of Moroccan life. Each city’s ancient medina revolves around four neighborhood requisites: a mosque, a public fountain, a bakery, and a hammam — the last frequented by residents at least once a week for a thorough scrub. There are thousands of hammams to choose from.
Karen Elowitt, 8:37 am
From most angles, this sculpture looks like a bunch of jagged-edged steel columns jutting out of the Earth, but shift slightly to one side and a profile of Nelson Mandela appears. Located near Howick, the sculpture marks the spot where Mandela was captured and arrested in 1962. This arrest set in motion a chain of events that would make Mandela a legend: 27 years in prison, his evolution as a freedom fighter, and his subsequent release to become president of a newly democratic South Africa. The Mandela Capture Site and its themes of fracture and transformation are a top Mandela tourist destination in South Africa.
Dana Sanchez, 8:01 am
Sousse has some spectacular, if overcrowded, beaches. If you’re traveling independently, the best way to reach Sousse is by train. It’s a relatively scenic route through the Tunisian countryside, past olive and orange groves and small villages. Or you can jump in a “louage,” Tunisia’s much-loved shared transport. Just watch out for the crazy driving. Getting behind the wheel in Tunisia is no small thing, and can quickly descend into something resembling a video game. Once in Sousse, the best stretches of beach are around the hotels Movenpick and Marhaba Beach.
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