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Posts in ‘Things to do in Africa’

New Year’s Kiss

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New Year's Kiss A friend once told me that her New Year’s resolution was to be kissed as the clock struck twelve on the first day of the New Year. So here are some great and different places that I would suggest for that magical kiss with that special someone:

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Famous for its Carnival, Rio is also great destination any other time of year. This is one of the few times of the year that the locals join the tourists for a great time! This celebration is on par with their Carnival and the fireworks are absolutely amazing. Dress up in white and share that New Years kiss on the beaches of Rio! And you cannot come all the way to Brazil without experiencing its rainforests, can you?

Venice, Italy

This small city in Italy is perfect for a New Year’s kiss. On the last night of the year, many restaurants in Venice have feasts starting from 9p.m. and lasting until midnight, with great food and cheap wine. Also, in St. Mark’s Square there is a huge celebration with music, fireworks and a huge group kiss at midnight. And nothing spells romantic like a gondola ride through the canals of Venice!

Cape Town, South Africa

Welcome the New Year dancing in Cape Town! Some of the hottest parties and celebrations are held in this seaside city, and you can have your special New Years Kiss while on the beach. You of course will have to try the wine while in South Africa, for it rivals even Italy for quality!

Hong Kong, China

Although the Chinese Lunar New Year does not coincide with December 31st, there are still celebrations held in Hong Kong! You will not be at a loss to find a popping party the night of. Top the Hong Kong experience off with your New Years kiss while LED lights count down the last 60 seconds of the old year! You cannot forget the wonderful beauty outside Hong Kong either, for China is home to some of the most breathtaking sights.

Sydney, Australia

Although not as typically romantic as European cities, Sydney has a lot to offer. Enjoy your New Year’s kiss as some of the first New Year’s fireworks in the world explode in the night sky amid music! The best part of being in Sydney at the end of the year is that it is not wintertime; you will be coming in the height of summer. You can spend your days at the beach, dolphin spotting and enjoying the Australian lifestyle!

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Come to Cape Town

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Cape Town is arguably Africa’s most popular tourist destination, for good reason. Cape Town provides the best of both worlds, by combining the convenience of city living coupled with magnificent views of nature. Here are some activities that you must put on your Cape Town itinerary:
shark
1. Shark Cage Dive
Come face-to-face with one of the world’s most notorious predators, the Great White Shark, on a Shark Cage Diving Tour. If you prefer to keep some distance between you and the sharks, enjoy the experience via boat. You’ll see a variety of sea life from penguins to seals.

2. Whale-Watching
If you don’t like sharks, why not try a more-friendly Whale Watching Tour? The tour will take you to the seaside town of Hermanus, a world-famous whale watching destination. There’s no need to bring your binoculars, as the whales come to within twenty metres of the shore!
penguins
3. Cape Peninsula Tour
Explore the natural beauty of Cape Town and its surrounding area, on this comprehensive tour. See rare and endangered flora at Cape of Good Hope Nature Reserve and the adorable penguin colonies at Boulders Beach.

4. Cape Town Township Tour
Get to know Cape Town through the eyes of a local on this informative cultural tour. You will visit a range of areas from the oldest township of Langa to the colourful streets of Bo Kaap. Try some local delicacies, learn about the impact of apartheid and see the work of traditional craftsmen.

5.
Cape Town Winelands Tour
What could be better than sampling delicious wines surrounded by spectacular scenery? You will visit some of the best wine estates in Cape Town and partake in expert-led tasting sessions. Plus there are many opportunities to explore the towns and estates.

And if you fancy a Shark Dive in Cape Town, vote for it in the isango! Travel experience poll and you’ll be entered to win a brand new iPad and other amazing weekly giveaways.

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Best places in the world to go scuba diving

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Scuba diving in the Great Barrier Reef (Flickr by Simon Starr)

Scuba diving in the Great Barrier Reef (Flickr by Simon Starr)

During the summer months a holiday to a tropical destination is quite popular.  There are several things to do while on holiday in paradise and one exciting activity to partake in in scuba diving.  Scuba diving is a wonderful way to see all that the ocean has to offer up close.  If scuba diving isn’t up your alley then perhaps just snorkeling would be better suited for you.  But one this is for certain; with these scuba destinations you are sure to see the ocean at its finest. continue reading

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British and Irish Lions squad announced

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An announcement has been made confirming the British and Irish Lions players that people on tours of Cape Town and other South African destinations will be able to see during the team’s visit to the country this year.

Irish second row Paul O’Connell will captain the British and Irish Lions this year, becoming the 10th Irishman to lead the team and the 27th captain overall.

O’Connell is one of 37 players picked to take part in the tour of South Africa, a squad that includes 17 backs and 20 forwards.

The captain is one of a record 14 Irish players selected for the team, joined by the likes of Brian O’Driscoll, Tommy Bowe, Ronan O’Gara and Jamie Heaslip.

Thirteen Welsh players were named by head coach Ian McGeechan in this year’s British and Irish Lions squad, including Shane Williams and Andy Powell, while Joe Worsley and Andrew Sheridan were among the eight Englishmen picked.

Only two Scots – Nathan Hines and Euan Murray – were selected for the tour.

Travellers taking tours of South Africa this year will be able to see British and Irish Lions matches in destinations including Cape Town on June 23rd and Johannesburg on July 4th.

Cape Town – From the wine route to the game parks there is so much to see and do in Cape Town.ADNFCR-1652-ID-19134165-ADNFCR

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They Aren’t Called French Fries? Trying Out the Local Cuisines

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I was more than a little nervous about giving up the fantastic variety of Californian cuisine for my move to London. Sure I’d be living in a fantastic neighbourhood (Kensington, ever heard of it?), taking fun classes (hi, field trips to Oxford, Parliament, the Globe), working a fun company, meeting tons of new people, and travelling like mad (read my Dublin post anyone?), but all I could think about as I jumped on that United jet was, what about burritos? Cheeseburgers? Pluto’s salads? As delightful as afternoon tea sounds, anyone who’s hopped on the “English cuisine” Wikipedia page can probably understand my hesitation. I’m sorry guys, but chip sandwiches? How does somebody even come up with that?

Chip Butty - Annie Mole

Chip Butty - Annie Mole

Which isn’t to say a chip butty isn’t one of the first things I tried when I got here (add a little ketchup and it’s not bad!), but I certainly wasn’t prepared for the richness of the culinary culture here. continue reading

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Cape Town to host Funny Festival

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Stand-up comedy fans will be able to incorporate some top-class entertainment into their Cape Town tours this year as the city hosts the Vodacom Funny Festival.

The event will be held at the Baxter Theatre Centre in the iconic South African city from June 15th to July 19th.

Audiences will be introduced to the leading performers in the local comedy scene, including Marc Lottering, described as "Cape Town’s favourite son", who will act as master of ceremonies.

Other acts taking part in this year’s festival include female comic Tumi Morake from Johannesburg and physical comedy duo Gamarjobat, who will come to South Africa all the way from Tokyo.

The British comedy scene will be represented by the Raymond and Mr Timpkins Revue, who have already made a name for themselves in clubs across London.

As well as familiarising themselves with the creative culture of the city, visitors to Cape Town can get to know the local wildlife by going cage-diving with great white sharks or taking part in a whale-watching tour.

Cape Town – From the wine route to the game parks there is so much to see and do in Cape Town.ADNFCR-1652-ID-19104961-ADNFCR

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Discover Easter Traditions on the Red Sea

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Those looking for a break from their traditional Easter this year can find refuge on the Red Sea Coast. Ethiopia and Egypt are celebrating Easter and the arrival of spring with their own traditions. While the Ethiopian Orthodox Church’s Fasika focuses on the solemn and religious nature of the season, Egypt’s Sham el Nessim relies more on tradition, making it accessible to all religions in the region.

Ethiopia Rejoices During Fasika

Travellers to Ethiopia during Fasika, which takes place based on the Eastern Christian calendar, will find people in a state of reflection and fasting. The 55 days leading up to Easter have strict dietary guidelines which limit food intake. When Easter Sunday arrives, mass is held in the local church. All of the followers can not usually fit inside the church and sometimes it must be held outside under a large tent. Decorative Vitenge and Kanga (cloth made to look like trees or butterflies) are hung from the ceiling. Long after light is gone the priest announces that Christ has risen. It is now 3am and the celebration shall begin.
Christian hymns are sung with the beating of drums and the high-pitched Kigelegele cries of the women. Dancing and feasting brings the fast to a close as the Ethiopians celebrate life. Formal dress of stark white robes dance against the jewel tone robes of the priests. Sequined umbrellas add to the mesmerizing spectacle before you. The celebration continues through the day with great feasting and family. continue reading

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‘Never been a better time’ to visit Cape Town

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There has "never been a better time" to take Cape Town tours, according to a travel article in the Daily Telegraph.

Following a trip to the popular African travel destination, writer Graham Boynton said that the range of activities and experiences combined with the favourable exchange rate makes Cape Town an unmissable destination for Brits.

One of the major attributes of the city is its status as a sporting hotspot, with a number of events set to take place this year.

It was recently announced that the Indian Premier League cricket competition will get underway in Cape Town on April 18th and the city is also expected to prove popular with people visiting South Africa for the British Lions rugby tour later this year.

The destination will be one of the leading travel destinations when South Africa hosts the 2010 World Cup, along with other major cities such as Johannesburg and Durban.

For people with no interest in sport, there is always the natural appeal of Cape Town and attributes such as "blue skies, caressingly warm weather [and] cool, clear nights", which make the city an "absolutely beautiful" destination, according to Mr Boynton.

Cape Town – From the wine route to the game parks there is so much to see and do in Cape Town.ADNFCR-1652-ID-19095544-ADNFCR

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Visit Cape Town for the Book Festival

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Cape Town tours could prove popular among literature lovers later this year as the South African city hosts the Book Fair.

The fair, which welcomed more than 50,000 visitors last year and is the largest literary event in sub-Saharan Africa, will come to the Cape Town International Convention Centre from June 13th to 16th.

Vanessa Badroodien, director of the fair, describes it as "a perfect place to get an overview of the literature and publishing from other African countries".

The 2009 event will be boosted by collaboration with the Goethe Institute and will be attended by some of the leading intellectuals from across southern Africa, who will participate in various discussions and debates.

Some 392 seminars and other interactive events featured in the Cape Town Book Fair last year, as well as exhibitions by more than 300 organisations from 31 countries.

Cape Town tours offer travellers the chance to see some of the city’s most famous attractions, including Table Mountain and Cape Point.

Cape Town – From the wine route to the game parks there is so much to see and do in Cape Town.ADNFCR-1652-ID-19085585-ADNFCR

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Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro – Adventure of a Lifetime

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climb of mount kilimanjaro

The Thrill of Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro

Were you glued to the TV as British celebs struggled up Africa’s highest mountain for Comic Relief? Did you cheer when Girls Aloud singer Cheryl Cole reached the summit just before dawn?

Did you look at the breathtaking scenery and the dawn over Africa and think, “Wow, I’d like some of that?” If the answer’s “Yes,” and the brave Comic Relief team inspired you, then you too can enjoy the adventure of a lifetime climbing Mount Kilimanjaro.

Choose from two excellent treks: Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro – 5 Days/4 Nights or Mount Kilimanjaro Tours – 6 Days/5 Nights, each taking a different route. Both show you the best this great mountain has to offer. And both are guaranteed to be spectacular!

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