/ On The Road
On The Road — By Andy Hayes on August 24, 2010 at 4:07 am
Filed under: Africa, featuredarticle, travel tips

4 Reasons Africa Should be Your Next Travel Experience

Africa is one of the world’s last wild continents – it’s more accessible than Antartica, for sure, but you’ll find just as diverse experiences from one end of the land to the other, but with far fewer tourist and a lot more breathing room. Africa is a place full of misconceptions, but instead of focusing on righting wrongs, let’s reflect on five great reasons why Africa should be your next travel experience.

Learn Humility from Mother Nature

Given that Africa is one of the few places where it really seems that Mother Nature is in charge, your trip will be the perfect opportunity to experience some humility by the world in its unadulterated habitat.  From a Kenya safari to whale watching in South Africa, most visitors feel pretty small in comparison to watching the world come alive right in front of their eyes.  There’s nothing like seeing a whale ten to twenty times larger than you to reminder you how diverse our world is, or to see a lion take down its prey in the bush to remind you that life is fleeting, regardless of who you are. It might not have been the first place on  your list to come and reflect, but it should be.

Feel Hospitality from Africa’s True Social Currency

While the media would have you think that Africa is a world run by corruption between the haves and have-nots, I believe the continent’s true social currency is hospitality.  Regardless whether your accommodation is a home stay with a local family or some of the more spacious luxury lodges, you will be welcomed (in most countries, anyway) a guest who is welcome anytime.  African tradition states that you are to be ushered in with open arms, treated as the guest of honor, and made sure to feel as comfortable as possible.  Modern Africa has learned that tourism is a way to wealth and growth, so in many regions, hospitality is as strong as it ever has been.

See History Progress

It’s incredible to visit countries like Botswana or Cameroon and think that less than half a century ago, these countries were poor places under the lifeless rule of far-away European parents.  But once France and Great Britain gave these countries their independence, they never looked back.  Botswana in particularly has experienced record growth, and in these places it’s such a unique perspective where modern conveniences (architecture, shopping, industry) have grown while holding onto traditions such as music, costume, and arts.  Africa isn’t without troubles, I know, but it’s a place to learn far more than any history book could ever hope to each.

Be a Cosmopolitan

The draw of Africa is often the countryside – full of flora, fauna, and creatures to take your attention.  But the cities are incredible places away – Johannesburg in South Africa being one of the most popular destinations for foreigners.  But consider the ancient wonders hiding down streets and alleyways in Cairo or Casablanca; what about the golden sunset of Kenya’s very modern skyline in Nairobi?  You can even have salsa lessons after a few cocktails in downtown Addis Ababa.

Many skip Africa for the fears of the unknown.  But with all of the wonderful experiences and lessons that Africa can teach us, isn’t it time you considered it for your next travel destination?

Photo credits: rob inh00d

NOTE:  This post is sponsored by Sanctuary Retreats; the opinions expressed herein are solely those of the author.

Tags: Africa, featuredarticle, travel tips

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