Africa Series

Africa Fashion

Africa Mayors Shine

Angola Opens Doors

Berber Wedding

Cruise Africa

Paris of Africa

Pharaohs Lure Tourists

Magical Kenya

Queen of Sheba

South Africa by Rail

Tanzania Hosts ATA

Tunisia's Carthage

Dunns of Zululand

Zambia: Livingstone
and Victoria Falls

Uganda- East Africa
Update. Prof.. Thome
Nile Ivy Safaris
Namirembe Tours
Nabugabo Holiday Ctr.
Uganda Martyrs Trail


Learn about the Midroc Technology Group based in Addis Ababa in a new edition of Africa Travel magazine and DVD. Details



1. Nigerian delegates at Waterfront in Vancouver during the UN World Urban Forum. 2. - African mayors tour city with ATA Canada chapter. Photos by Muguette Goufrani. Photos by Muguette Goufrani

Name the Top 10 Africa Vacations

Africa: A continent with over 5O Separate Travel Destinations
by Jerry W. Bird


Quick Now! When you think of Africa, what image comes to mind? Do you visualize a luxury tented camp near Mt. Kilimanjaro in Tanzania? Do you see an elegant, Orient-Express class railway coach sailing through a grassy sea? Is a world class United Nations Convention Center and 90 foreign embassies your idea of Addis Ababa? How about a Manhattan skyline in Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire, West Africa? Believe it! The state of the art facilities in hotels, resorts, lodges, and meeting places for tourists and business visitors in many African countries shatters the myths and blows away most preconceived notions of today's visitor. So does the Transatlantic service of Africa bound airlines. Another monster myth is the price tag. Thanks to fleet expansion and alliances, getting to Africa from the USA is easier and cheaper for your clients than ever. Just ask anyone from the Africa Travel Association (ATA) who has flown there lately.

Africa Travel Association (ATA) Builds Bridges to Africa
When 500 delegates convene in Cape Town, South Africa, May 20-25, 2001, they'll be toasting ATA's 26th International Congress. Of course, it will be with the finest Cape wines. As a nonprofit, nonpolitical organization, ATA's membership is comprised of government ministers, tourist board officials, tour operators, travel agency, hotel, airline, marketing and media executives, educators and group organizers. ATA's mandate is to educate its membership, teaching agents about changing consumer demands, how to market new African products, packages and destinations effectively, and why cultural, educational and ecotourism is gaining such popularity in America. Niche markets are foremost - adventure travelers, seniors, families on safari, African-Americans seeking cultural heritage, budding archaeologists, history buffs, sports lovers, the meetings and incentive trade - you name it. ATA teaches agents how to spot new trends and cash in early.

Africa Travel Magazine Presents The Great Cities of Africa. Capials of Culture and Historic Gateways to Tourism
Powerful Advertising Opportunity

Marketing Africa Tourism in USA

Djibouti hosts Successfulk ATA 11th Eco Cultural Tourism Symposium - Details
Tanzania to Host ATA's 33rd Annual Congress in Arusha 19-23 May 2007 . Download PDF file


Africa's Mountains of the Moon
by Cam McLeay. I pulled my sleeping bag over my head and tightened the drawstring around my face. I have been living in Uganda for over 3-years and couldn't remember the last time I had actually climbed into my sleeping bag, let alone pulled the hood over my head - we live on the equator and we are not used to feeling that cold. The next thing I knew it was morning and light crept through the window of the Guy Yeoman hut. I ventured outside and mist swirled around in the valley below. A brisk wind dispelled any ideas I had of an early morning swim. Smoke poured from beneath the roof of the porters huts - a good sign that the fire was warm and the day had begun. More->

An African Cruise: The Ultimate Experience
"Imagine a cruise around Africa, via the Suez Canal, stopping at exotic ports on the Mediterranean, Atlantic and Indian Ocean. Or if that's not enough, Africa's rivers and lakes offer an abundance of opportunity for everything from soft adventure to luxury. From what we've heard at this year's travel show circuit, travel agents can expect some new cruise programs involving Africa.” The ultimate experience.

Africa In The Queen of Sheba's Footsteps
by Jerry W. Bird. Given Aladdin's 3 wishes I would: (1) Restore Emperor Haile Sellasie's original 'Lion of Judah' railway engine that's standing all alone in the train yard. (2) Hook it up to the Emperor's prized set of antique French and British crafted coaches, and (3) Operate a twice daily luxury tour on the Franco-Ethiopian Railway. Built in the 1930s, the 482 mile line stretches from Ethiopia's capital, Addis Ababa, via Nazaret, Rift Valley and Dire Dawa, to Djibouti, a French protectorate on the Gulf of Aden. More->

The Switzerland of Africa
by Muguette Goufrani

The story of my journey from the Gulf of Guinea on Africa's Atlantic Coast to historic Mali Ville in the northern highlands appears in our bilingual Africa Travel Magazine. With that in mind, please consider this online version as an hors d'oeuvre - the full course banquet will come when you visit Guinea. I guarantee that your travel experience will be a feast - and like one of Nat King Cole' s most famous songs ... Unforgettable More->

From the Paris of Africa to its elegant Roman Cathedral
Jerry W. Bird

Having heard our Associate Editor Muguette Goufrani sing the praises of her life and times in Cote d'Ivoire and other West African countries, I was full of anticipation as we boarded the Air Afrique jet at the Cotonou, Benin Airport, bound for the legendary Ivory Coast. As serendipity plays a big part in many of my African journeys, the first Ivorian we chanced to meet en route was a Mr. Gakpo, "The Lobster Man of Abidjan" (a possible song title), who kindly invited us to stay at his seaside inn the following week More-> Africa in One Country
by Jerry W. Bird

"If you dance, you vibrate - and he who vibrates lives." Popular quotation.

Mount Cameroon, West Africa's highest peak, stands like a giant sentinel, gazing out over the Gulf of Guinea on Africa's Atlantic Coast. Among it's legendary names is "Throne of Thunder," a fitting tribute to the powerful gods that are said to inhabit the mountain's inner core. Our group of travel agents and journalists approached the 'throne' shortly after one of its frequent volcanic eruptions, and the ribbons of cooled lava resembled grey frosting oozing from an enormous layer cake. The lava beds are evident from the main highway to Kribi and a hiking trail winds up and over them. The warning signs advised us to pay respect and to tread gently in this eco- sensitive area. More->

Two stories by Habeeb Salloum
Standing atop Mount Byrsa, the acropolis of both Punic and Roman Carthage, I surveyed the panorama of the modern spread-out urban center covering the historic ruins which, without doubt, form an important part of the heritage of humankind. After having a short time before explored the few Punic, also known as Phoenician or Carthaginian, and Roman remains, so far uncovered, it was easy to fantasize about the Punic/ Roman wars and their most renowned hero, Hannibal - one of the greatest army commanders in the ancient world and Carthage's most illustrious son. Among its once splendid villas and richly adorned temples, he must have strolled, planning his battles with mighty Rome. Leading his 59,000 men and 40 elephants over the Alps in an epic march, he kept Rome for years under the threat of his troops. Even though he won many battles, he was never able to occupy that city. Eventually, he had to return to defend Carthage. At the Battle of Zama near Carthage, his army was defeated in 202 B.C. and he fled to Asia Minor where, rather than be captured by the Romans, he committed suicide. More->

Great Botanical Gardens of Africa
by Jerry W. Bird
During the ATA sponsored Cultural and Eco Tours of Cameroon in West Central Africa, in 2001 and again in 2004, our members were captivated by the Limbe Botanical Gardens, whose trees and shrubs contain many of the health giving and curative products known to mankind. Here is what the Tourism Ministry has to say about this attractive location. "Created in 1892 by German horticulturists to acclimatize economic and medicinal plants such as quinine, coffee, rubber, cocoa and banana, the botanic garden in Limbe also served as a training center for Cameroonians in the field of agriculture,

Nigeria: A tourism destination full of challenges
by Helen C. Broadus

I had the wonderful opportunity to participate in a Familiarization (FAM) Tour to Nigeria, West Africa this past October as a member of Tourism Consortium International (TCI). The overall purpose of this trip was to experience the level of readiness of Nigeria's travel and tourism infrastructure to include its hotel accommodations, air and road transportation, hospitality amenities and security services. This journey was made possible by the efforts of Chief Margaret B. Fabiyi, Nigeria's ASTA Chapter President, who was able to have KLM Royal Dutch Airlines and the Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation (NTDC) cosponsor the two-week program. Click here or on above photos for more pictures and captions. More->

Grand Tours and Safaris in Magical Kenya
by Jerry W. Bird

As editors and publishers of Africa Travel Magazine, our most recent 40-day stay in Magical Kenya was the grand finale of a two-year effort that will result in 3 new issues designed to shatter the media myths and set the record straight on Kenya's return to world prominence as a tourism superstar. More->

Adrift on the White Nile
by Cam McLeay

Downstream, the river raced swiftly out of sight and another huge rapid thundered a warning to our vulnerable rafts. Wisps of spray sparkled with the colors of the rainbow where the river disappeared and a menacing crocodile charged our rafts from the far bank. Sanctuary was a small eddy on the south bank of the river where hippos jumped on top of each other wary of the strange intruders. I shivered at the idea of running a rapid we had never seen, didn't fancy the idea of facing a crocodile longer than our raft and so opted to upset the hippos. A large bull rose out of the water, opened his huge mouth in warning and then crashed into the pool and disappeared. Seconds later, I pulled hard on the oars and spun the heavily laden raft into the eddy hoping he would not surface beneath me. We hit the bank, tied off the raft and watched the croc hold his ground behind a little rock island midstream. No-one had ever rafted these rapids before. More->

Flight to the Land of Diamonds
By Jerry W. Bird.

"Angola is a success story in the making -- a fascinating, uplifting saga of recovery, renewal, revival, restoration, and a massive face-lift for Luanda and points beyond. Shout it from the rooftops ... "Peace has come to Angola -- at last it can be told." This resource rich republic on Africa's South Atlantic Coast has finally escaped the shackles and shadows of its topsy turvy past, and is becoming a shining example for emerging countries around the world. Thanks to its presence in Angola, the Africa Travel Association (ATA) is the first international tourism organization to spread the good news far and wide, in North America and to its growing global audience. I saw the signs a few years ago, when Angola exhibited at an ATA Congress Trade Show. That positive move signaled the country's desire to get back on track for tourism -- and due to continued efforts by H.E. Eduardo Jonatáo. S. Chingunji, Minister for Hotels and Tourism, ATA has become the platform for Angola's happy return. More->

Berber Wedding Fair at Imilchil, Morocco
by Muguette Goufrani

My father, who operated a tour company in Morocco and France for many years, took me along with a German tour group to visit a traditional "Wedding Fair" at Hadiddou Imilchil, a Berber village in southern Morocco. While I knew that many Berber Fairs combine a local Saint's Day with a regional market event, only at September's 'moussem' (pilgrimage) of Imilchil, have I seen such a colorful pageant, with instant engagement, and a mass exchange of marriage vows. Berbers have inhabited North Africa for centuries, some being of Caucasian ancestry, with fair complexions and blue eyes. Visitors may think of Berbers as exotic outsiders, yet they preceded the Arabs in settling Morocco, and they remain the country's main culture. This is expressed by the phrase, "Morocco is Berber - the roots and the leaves of freedom." More->

Grand Tour of Ghana- A Golden Experience
By Jerry W. Bird

What was my impression of Ghana on our first visit since 1999?
Upon landing at Accra's Kotoka International Airport my eyes were fixed like lasers on a banner newspaper headline that shouted its bold, positive message across the arrivals area - "Ghana is Safe." What a confidence builder -- and nothing in two exciting weeks of ATA 31st Congress activities, colorful galas and an educational, fun-packed, cross country tour gave us any reason to doubt the authenticity of that challenging statement.

Morocco's Vegetable Foods
by Habeeb Salloum

No one who has enjoyed couscous, the national dish of Morocco, in all its meat varieties, will dream that in many peasant homes this delicacy is prepared solely from vegetables and semolina. These toilers of the soil who never taste meat for weeks at a time prepare, not only their couscous, but almost all their dishes from grain and vegetables. With the right amount of herbs and spices they create incredibly tasty meals, forming an important part of the Moroccan kitchen - a cuisine with an illustrious history. A great number of the Moroccans firmly believe that no other country's culinary art has reached the exalted heights of their cooking. A number of travelers support this assessment, stating that if the food of this North African country is not the greatest in the world, it stands near the top as one of the world's eminent cuisines. More->

Bunce Island - Legacy of the Transatlantic Slave Industry
By David J. Saunders

Bunce Island, which was established as a major slave trading fortress and castle in 1670, is locate approximately twenty miles upriver in the Freetown Harbor on the Sierra Leone River. Bunce Island is a small piece of land measuring just 1700 feet long and 300 feet wide. Its strategic importance was that it was the last navigable point for Ocean going ships of the slave trade which made it advantageous for trade and defensive purposes. Today Bunce Island is in ruins, and it is very difficult to see the fort from a distance. Vines and other tropical vegetation have grown over the ruins and in crevices in the halls of the stone buildings. More

African Fashions and Designers Win World Acclaim
By Muguette Goufrani

Africans are painting the world in a kaleidoscope of bold, vibrant color combinations and dazzling patterns. The rich fabrics and virtually unlimited selection of turbans and other festive headgear, bright scarves, colorful wraps, wearable art and elegant gowns that brightened our days and lit up our evenings in Morocco, Kenya, Ethiopia, Cameroon, Cote d'Ivoire Uganda, Benin, Ghana, Tanzania, Guinea and other African destinations, were simply outstanding. What's more, so were the creators. During the past decade as publishers, we've had the privilege of meeting several of the brightest stars in Africa's fashion galaxy, and thanks to the magic of serendipity, more will surely appear in the near future. As I've learned, in many African societies, the choice of colors and textiles has special significance to the wearer. For example, hats often tell stories of everyday life, with its struggles, spiced by uplifting periods of joie de vivre. More->

Great Cities of Morocco Series: Discovering Marrakech
Jerry W. Bird

 A destination where one may enjoy the customs, culture and pleasures of laid back tourism, Marrakech is loaded with outstanding attractions, events and accommodation. Its conference facilities are a magnet for international events, trade missions and summits, such as our ATA Ecotourism Symposium at Le Palais d'Congrès. Where else are all the walls and buildings tinted in a rich pastel peach, the broad avenues and promenades lined with rows and rows of orange trees, with ripe fruit dangling from their branches like holiday ornaments? More->

Great Flying Safaris in Tanzania
by Jerry Bird.

Our Air Safari, which took place during the 10 days of Christmas 2003, began with a seafood dinner on the patio at one of my favorite places, "The Slipway" on Dar es Salaam's rapidly-changing waterfront. At this unique shopping mall, now in its third or fourth stage of development, we were introduced to the owner Nicola Colangelo, an exceptional person and gracious host. Having just completed two weeks of dawn to dusk sessions at conferences in Zanzibar and at Dar es Salaam's Golden Tulip Hotel, the idea of flying on the Coastal Air Safari circuit had a special appeal. Another good omen that same day was our reunion, after five years, with popular entertainer King Kiki, the Swahili Coast's Louis Armstrong - his musical beat goes on forever. More->

Discovering Essaouira
Jerry W. Bird

Here we are, basking in the noonday sun on North Africa's Atlantic Coast at Essaouira, Morocco, following a journey of discovery which began in the Imperial city of Fès and continued via Rabat, Casablanca, Marrakech and beyond. In a few days, we will drive further south for two hours to the resort city of Agadir, with its rows of luxury beach front hotels and casinos catering to the jet set of Europe, Africa, the Orient and Middle East. Most North Americans have yet to discover these two coastal resort cities .. and that's a prime opportunity for our magazine, which targets travel professionals in the USA and Canada. We are enjoying a nautical view of Essaouira's historic seaport, once known as Mogador, from our dockside table at " Chez Sam. "

Central Africa's Pristine Parks and Wilderness Safaris
by Muguette Goufrani

Among my journeys throughout the length and breadth of this vast continent, the Central African Republic provided an opportunity for me to experience something beyond the ordinary. This relatively new nation is roughly the size of France, with geographical features that include Savannah plains, mountain ranges, dense rain forests and many rivers. Back in late 1800s, the French Colonial powers named this country ' Ubangui-Shari, ' and focused on making it an agricultural resource with vast cotton, coffee and tobacco plantations. More-:>

What's Your Hat-itude?

I am fascinated, and often captivated by the designs, textiles and in particular, the head wear, hats, coiffure, turbans and wraps of indigenous peoples around the world. In many African societies, the choice of colors and fabrics is outstanding and has special significance to the wearer. Hats often tell stories of everyday life, with its struggles, spiced by uplifting periods of joie de vivre. While I have worked in various African countries and journeyed widely in my earlier career as a travel agent, my ten year involvement with Africa Travel Magazine has brought the importance of African fashion into sharp focus. More->

Togo West Africa
by Muguette Goufrani

Where do many West Africans go for an extended holiday or weekend fun? Chances are better than average that Togo tops many of their agendas. While we were living in West Africa, my family and I will never forget the Togolese hospitality we enjoyed during our visits to that friendly country. Some say, should a popularity contest be held today, amongst all West African countries, Togo-"Pearl of West Africa" would come first. Lome, the capital city, with several five star hotels and acres of sandy, sun-drenched beaches, has become a highly popular vacation center for Europeans. For most Americans and Canadians, it's still a well kept secret. Visitors hardly need to leave their hotel area; the Atlantic ocean is one block from the heart of the city. . More->

Gabon: West Central African Profile
by Muguette Goufrani

As part of my decade living on Africa's West Coast, our family spent a memorable year in the Republic of Gabon, which hugs the Atlantic, straddles the equator and is roughly the size of France. Being health fanatics and outdoor types, my mother Suzanne, brother Jean Pierre and I thrived in the hot, humid climate - and in 12 months, managed to visit much of the countryside. This gave us an intimate connection with the Gabonaise culture and was valuable in my future career in tourism. We enjoyed a laid back, tropical lifestyle; food was delicious and varied, the shops and stalls were full of interesting items and tempting snacks. What's more, to our delight, the traditional West African culture had in no way disappeared with the oil boom." More->

I am Uganda
by Jerry W. Bird

I am Uganda, gifted by nature - a land that's painted in 1,001 shades of green, a friendly land whose balmy temperatures are matched only by the warmth and hospitality of its people. While I straddle the equator, thanks to an average altitude of 4,000 ft. above sea level, instead of blistering days and hot steamy nights, you'll enjoy an amazingly mild and pleasant climate all year round. In fact, I am one of only three countries in the world that is located on the equator and has similar geographic conditions with respect to altitude. One can enjoy my endless attractions and activities without wearing a jacket or sweater, even in the mid December. More->

The Emerald of Africa
by Abigail Lubliner

Upon preparing for the Africa Travel Association's Eighth Cultural and Eco-tourism Symposium, I decided to research and compare itineraries and prices at various tour operators in Uganda. I came upon Edsa African Safaris and Tours, Madam Sarah G. Mugabi, Director. At 1 Portal Avenue, Suite 308 Span House, P.O. Box 27871, Kampala, Tel: +256-41-252647/230921, Mob: +256-77-882844, Fax: +256-41-252647, E mail: info@edsatours.com, Web Site: www.edsatours.com Continued

Cape Town to Pretoria and Beyond on Rovos Rail
by Jerry W. Bird

"The design of the train has given us suites considerably larger than the world's famous trains such as the Orient Express, the Blue Train, Royal Scotsman in England and El Andalus in Spain." Rohan Vos

One of the first lessons one learns on entering the wonderful world of Rovos Rail is that this "tour of a lifetime" is not just a South African experience -- its routes extend to five countries on a network of steel rails. For example, there's an annual excursion to Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, which many rave about. On this cool January morning, however, the destination is Pretoria, South Africa's capital city and headquarters of Rovos Rail, the Pride of Africa. Our leisurely two and a half day trip north through the country's heartland, allows ample time to relax, lay back, sip the wine, smell the roses, think lofty thoughts and get to know some interesting people. Daniel Dunn, one of the Western Cape's best informed tour guides, drove us to the Cape Town station, where Rovos Rail's owner Rohan Vos and Sales Manager David Patrick greeted us, as our baggage was whisked away in a flash More->

Africa's Historic Cities
Did you know that since 1976, over 30 African cities have hosted events by the Africa Travel Association? This astonishing support represents 22 different countries - no other travel industry organization even comes close. What's more, a key reason for ATA's wide acceptance and a flurry of new chapters is the fact that Africans share in the leadership. More->

copyright 2006