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Turn on the TV this week and there's one word you can't go very long without hearing: Ebola.
While the crisis in Africa is still very much that, a crisis, the US has heard more about a single flight than anything else this week. So here are the facts.
On Monday, October 13, Frontier flight 1143 traveled from Cleveland-CLE to Dallas-DFW Airport. The plane was N220FR, a Frontier Airbus A320 ("Finn the Tiger Shark") and one passenger was a nurse who had previously treated . The plane went on to fly four more flights until the connection between the nurse and the plane was made, at which time the plane was removed from service for cleaning.
Health Travel / Travel Safety / Africa Travel / Ebola / Airports / Airport News / JFK / EWR / ORD / IAD / ATL / Airport Security / → All Tags
Whether you realize it or not, international airports are screening for health issues of incoming passengers. Typically it's just trained officials eyeballing the stream of arriving passengers, sometimes with the help of temperature sensors, looking for any telling signs of deteriorating health before an unwell person passes through customs and out into the public.
Owing to the recent threat of Ebola, however, those checks are about to become more obvious, and more specialized, at least temporarily.
According to the NYT, five US airports will begin screening passengers arriving from West Africa with new procedures, including a contactless thermometer to test for fever, and a questionnaire to determine a person's risk.
Volunteer Travel / Photographers Without Borders / Kenya Travel / Travel Photography / Voluntourism / Africa Travel / Charity Travel / → All Tags
Photographers Without Borders is helping grassroots causes around the world through Support, Inspiration, and Experiences.
PWB supports these organizations by providing free visual media that will help them educate others and raise awareness. They aim to inspire by using websites, magazines, blogs, and exhibits to share the amazing stories of these small charities and NGOs. Finally, Photographers Without Borders chooses members to represent the organization on unique and cultural volunteer assignments around the globe.
Volunteer Travel / Zimbabwe Travel / Africa Travel / Animals / Dog Travel / Safari Travel / → All Tags
Right now the safari high season is well underway along the Zambezi River in Zimbabwe.
From May to October Mana Pools National Park becomes on of the most popular destinations in the country for viewing elephants, hippos, waterbucks, wild dogs, lions and leopards by canoe, vehicles and walking tours.
Country Entrance Requirements / Family Travel / Traveling with Kids / Travel News / South Africa Travel / Africa Travel / → All Tags
South Africa’s new rules for traveling into and out of the country with children are so strict, they almost seem unbelievable. But a new reality is indeed coming for families, so, despite how excessive they might seem, they must be taken seriously if you want to be allowed to enter the country. Enforcement will commence in a few weeks on October 1st.
To start, let’s take a look at what the new rules are, and then we’ll get into some perspective on the motivation behind them. South Africa’s website gives us a very detailed breakdown of the new requirements, applicable to all children under 18 years of age:
Safari Travel / Africa Travel / Kenya Travel / Great Migration / Drinking Travel / Monday Five Thirty / → All Tags
With all the unfortunate things happening in the area, lost in the shuffle is the fact that one of nature’s most spectacular events, the Great Migration, is taking place at the moment, with millions of wildebeest crossing over between Tanzania and Kenya.
If going on a safari is on your bucketlist, then seeing the Great Migration should be in parenthesis. A few months ago, we discussed what the best time of year to go on a safari was, noting that with the Great Migration comes loads and loads of crowds. That’s why this travel writer feels Africa deserves two “trips of a lifetime,” one to see the savannas at peace and the another to experience the Great Migration.
Most voluntourism projects involve hands on work along the lines of digging ditches, playing with children, or feeding animals, but Fronteering.com has a different opportunity for burgeoning journalists that lets them hone their skills while learning a new way of life.
The Journalism Ghana project pairs volunteers with a local newspaper in Ghana where they'll help gather news, write stories, research, and investigate local issues.
Despite a past where everything and anything was up for grabs, not many game meats are still available to eat legally in Kenya. Considered "protected game," it is illegal to eat a majority of the exotic animals these days, including lion, leopard, rhino, elephant, buffalo, giraffe, zebra, impala, wildebeest, warthog, and elands, among others.
The Kenyan government banned sport hunting in 1977, but allowed limited hunting to cull animals and harvest game meat until 2003 when it was shut down completely because of the on-going poaching problem. In other words, it's become a numbers game in Africa.
Safari Travel / Kenya Travel / Africa Travel / Masai Mara Travel / Laikipia Travel / Nairobi National Park / → All Tags
The savannas of the Masai Mara
Last week, this writer visited a few of the safari regions in Kenya, including the Masai Mara, Laikipia, and Nairobi National Park. As you will see in the descriptions below, all were unique in their own ways, each offering a different experience in terms of scenery and game. Nairobi National Park was impressive because of its proximity to the city, Laikipia provided a safari/cultural combo, and the Masai Mara flexed its muscles and showed why it is one of Africa’s premier safari destinations.
There are two types of safaris to be had in Kenya: One that occurs during the Great Migration, and one that does not.
The Great Migration starts in July and is one of nature’s greatest spectacles. Over a million wildebeests cross the plains and savannas of Eastern Africa, providing visitors with what would seem on the surface to be endless opportunities of interaction. But while it's true that animal activity in the region might be at its peak, it’s not necessarily true that you will get the most intimate interaction. The reality is that along with the abundance of animals comes thousands of tourists.
Africa Travel / Mailbag / Kenya Travel / Nairobi Travel / Masai Mara / Safari Travel / Laikipia Travel / Travel Safety / → All Tags
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Those who have been following the news are aware that Kenya has been the target of Somali terrorist groups and, obviously, the attacks have been incredibly heartbreaking. Considering we are covering so much of the good coming out of Kenya, this writer doesn't think it's fair to leave that elephant completely out of the conversation. Admittedly, before deciding to make the journey from my home in Denver, I too wondered if it was safe to visit Kenya.
On my trip it was confirmed that, in terms of taking a safari, the answer is absolutely yes it is safe. The risk of danger in the national reserve areas like the Masai Mara and Laikipia are no greater than encountering a problem in any of America's national parks. Like here in the States, terrorism in Kenya has thus far been limited to populated places like Nairobi and Mombasa.
You know that you go to Kenya to digest the wildlife and the culture, but what should you wash it down with? In this addition of Monday, Five Thirty, we check out the common cocktails you’ll want to try during your trip:
The word “dawa” means “medicine” in Swahili, and this combination of gin, honey, and lime will definitely do wonders for your spirits. Most of the honey sinks to the bottom, so be sure to stir as you go. With the honey and the lime juice hiding the bite of the gin, this is a cocktail that goes down easy and tends to sneak up on you, earning it a reputation as a healer of whatever ails you.