Tag Archives: Africa

A holiday in Namibia

Namibia is a beautiful country in South West Africa and it’s a magical spot recommended for nature lovers, first time visitors and even returning travellers, whether young or old! There are a variety of fun activities for all to do.

Namibians are proud of their amazing wildlife, the country is well known as the home to iconic Safari destinations. This includes the famous self-drive safari tour, where visitors pick up a car from the airport and drive themselves to tour through these wildlife parks. Some tourists prefer this because it is less pricey.

Namibia till date, holds the highest Cheetah population in the world, which are the fastest land animals on Earth. They are considered to be in danger of going extinct by the International Union for Conservation. The Cheetah Conservation Fund in Namibia is working hard to protect these endangered species.

The oldest desert in the world is found in Namibia and no it’s not the Sahara desert. Research shows the Namib desert in Namibia is believed to be the oldest desert in the world. It’s a coastal desert along the shores of Western Namibia about 1600 km long. The desert has been dry and arid of life for more than 50 million years! The Namib desert is well known for also having the highest sand dunes in the world. A sand dune here can be as tall as 300 meters which is like a building with 100 floors, about the height of a skyscraper! There are lots of activities to do, ranging from climbing the Dunes 45, airplane tours or balloon tours over the Namib desert and quad biking over the golden sandy desert.

       

Namibia is actually a coastline country and has plenty beautiful shores with over a thousand miles of coastline. However, swimming in the beaches is not safe for people or tourists because of the rich marine life in the waters.  This is due to the cold strong waves of the ocean, being capable to sweep swimmers away. However it’s coastline is more suitable for professional surfers with surf boards, who want to explore the waters and high waves.

The famous skeleton coast in Namibia is  known for it’s dark past of ship wrecks due to it’s rough tides from the violent Atlantic ocean.  Though survivors made it out of the ship wreck to land, there was a large mass of dry sandy desert with no water, food or shelter waiting to welcome victims. Hence very few made it out alive of the desert and there are skeletons of animals, whales and ships littered all over this coastline.

Today in Namibia, the Skeleton Coast is a tourist hot spot littered with beautiful luxury lodges for tourists who come for sight-seeing of the desert and the ancient ship wrecks. This coastal desert tells a special story while being truly, tragic, sad, beautiful, historical and unique at the same time.

     

On the 13th January 2022, Mr Humphrey Geiseb, the Namibian high commissioner to Nigeria, paid a courtesy visit to Nigeria’s Minister of information and culture Lai Mohammed in Abuja.

Alhaji Lai Mohammed used this opportunity to also voice out Nigeria’s interest in partnering with Namibia to boost tourism and culture between both nations. The Minister remains hopeful that the MOU between both nations would be implemented as soon as possible.

The Minister also assured to promote healthy working relationships  between Nollywood and the Namibian film industry. He also received the kind gesture of the Namibian government to assist in improving the Elephant conservation in Nigeria as Mr. Geiseb emphasized that African wildlife is in danger of extinction. Lai Mohammed appreciated the Namibian government for supporting the country with 279 wildlife animals in accordance with the already signed MoU in cooperation of wildlife.

It seems a new tourism and cultural chapter between both countries is about to unfold, especially with Nigeria taking tips on wildlife preservation from one of Africa’s wildlife gurus, Namibia.

Mr. Humphrey Geiseb, the Namibian high commissioner to Nigeria also recounted and appreciated the support gotten from the Nigerian government when Namibia was fighting for independence. He also made clear that the Namibian-Nigerian joint commission would hold meetings to analyze and work towards all possible means of cooperation between the two countries in the future, these areas including tourism, beef infrastructure, creative industries, oil and gas sectors and animal conservation.

English is widely spoken in Namibia, their local dishes are delicious and foreigners are warmly welcomed  to the country. The Landscape of Namibia is second to none, having almost all types of landscape ranging from mountains, to savannah grasslands, deserts and beach coastlines. A lot of untold wonders to discover in this fascinating Southern African Nation. A trip to Namibia is well worth it.

The Red Pandemic

The season of love as its fondly called by many is finally here .  Valentine’s day also known as lover’s day is just few days away. This is a day when lovers, friends or family show their affection for one another with gifts and kind messages.

As a popular event all over the world, the month of February rolls in with flashes of the colour red . It floods everywhere, from our television screens, to shops, restaurants, social media ,work places and even our schools are not spared.

Over the years, the widespread use of the colour red has become synonymous with valentines day, but why red? What is really the significance of colour red to Valentine’s day? Red flowers, Red dresses, red love notes, chocolates wrapped in red and even red teddy bears. Almost like an outbreak of a red  pandemic that everyone catches.

The red theme for Valentine’s day has a lot to do with history and traditional beliefs from long ago. In the world of today, the colour red represents passion, love, romance, anger and  danger. Apart from the romantic attributes of colour red, it is also used as warning signs to show danger, for instance on traffic signs or fire fighting equipment.

     

When we picture Valentine’s day, the first colour that comes to our mind is  red . Now let’s picture where that ideology came from. There are many concepts as to why colour red symbolizes love and passion and few of them include:

The Ancient Greek and Roman  myth

The goddess of love Aphrodite falling in love with a mortal man named Adonis. Eventually as Adonis was about to die, the goddess of love Aphrodite rushed towards him while accidentally stepping on the thorns of a white rose. Hence blood staining the white rose to turn completely red, making it unique and the first red rose to exist. In this concept red blood and red rose is symbolizing love.

Valentine’s day also dates back to the time of the ancient Romans, when there was a particular festival to celebrate family fertility called  the Lupercalia festival. During this festival, blood from sacrificed animals were touched on the women to increase their fertility. This ritual was part of the roman tradition and was celebrated on every February 15th but was moved to February 14th in the 5th century by pope Gelasius I and renamed St. Valentine’s day. Scholars believe this explains the red colour of blood used during the sacrifice contributed to the popular connection of Valentine’s day and the colour red.

The Roman Priest

St Valentine was a Roman priest who believed in love and secretly wedded young Christian couples in the church. This was against the will of Emperor Claudias who felt unmarried soldiers fought better on the battlefield . He banned marriage among young people. Saint Valentine was executed on 14th February for refusing to denounce Christ and his christian faith. Thus the day is beloved to be celebrated to honor his memory.

The Human Anatomy 

The red colour in connection to Valentine’s day is simply related to love and the colour of blood and the human heart. This is why some Countries around the world including India and China encourage their brides to wear the colour red on their wedding day. Red remains a colour that stirs up excitement and communicates a feeling of desire. The colour red represents the blood and beating heart in our bodies, symbolizing pure affection and true love.

Is Green Africa the cheapest airline in Nigeria?

   

 

It may have been challenging for other airlines in the Nigerian aviation industry as Green Africa Airways announced launching its much awaited airline services in June 24th, 2021, with flight tickets available for purchase by the public for as low as ₦16,500. Considering the negative effect of covid-19 vividly affecting the progress of other airlines in the country, the industry’s newcomer, Green Africa choose a perfect time to hit the Nigerian aviation world, stand out and make a glaring difference. 

 

They were offering to carry passengers almost less than half the amount other local airlines were conveying their passengers! Destinations routes included Abuja, Akure, Enugu, Ilorin, Lagos, Owerri and Port Harcourt. 

The CEO of Green Africa Airways, Babawande Afolabi,  made it clear that one of the main areas of concentration was to focus on the economic interest of it’s customers and provide low cost fares for passengers. 

“We are crafting a network plan that will afford more customers the opportunity to pursue their economic interest or simply spend more time with family and friends,” Afolabi said while announcing the new route.

     

However, months later along the line, after kicking off operations and bringing in fresh competition to the aviation industry in Nigeria, industry experts argue that Green Africa Airways is by far not the cheapest airline in Nigeria. 

Aviation professional analysts suggests that when airlines charge less than  ₦40,000 per passenger, there would be a loss in operational costs of the airline which is risky, as aviation fuel is estimated to cost about  ₦220 per litre and a whooping amount of 8000 litres ( ₦1.7 million)  or more is needed to operate a one way local flight route! 

An unhappy passenger simply identified as Wanger Barnabas Akaazua, stated “If anyone told you this airline is cheap then they don’t know the truth about this airline. They’ve painted a picture that they’re affordable but in the actual sense they are one of the most expensive,” he stated.

 Akaazua lamented that there are so many hidden charges that are only revealed at the counter and not included anywhere on their website.

“What they don’t tell you is that you are entitled to only 7kg (both hand luggage and baggage). So, for every extra 1kg you pay N600.

“Imagine travelling with your family. For a flight of N25,000 I was made to pay an extra N10,000. Even hand luggage is weighed. How will I pay N25,000 and be entitled to only 7kg? That’s how I ended up paying N35,500 when Air Peace was N30,000,” the passenger complained. 

There are three types of economy class on the Green Africa Airways, which are the gSaver,  gClassic and gFlex.  The prices of these ticket types differ on baggage allowance. Passengers’ flight fares vary based on the amount of luggage they carry. 

The gSaver flyer enjoys 7kg hand luggage, the gClassic flyer enjoys all the benefits of the gSaver ticket plus an additional 15kg checked in luggage while the gFlex passengers has access to 7k hand luggage, 15kg checked in luggage, free seat selection, free online check-in and flight ticket changes at no additional fee.

 

How to lighten your suitcase when travelling

 

The holiday season is upon us and somewhere right now, some how,  many of us have our empty luggages waiting to be filled up and carried off to that amazing Christmas destination!

If you are a chronic over packer like most people out there, you would be thinking of what to put in or not put into your suitcase to avoid making it unnecessarily heavy and full of items you don’t actually need for your trip. Relax over packers, you’re also covered!

To begin with, being at the airport with an over-weight suitcase heavier than an elephant is an annoying and costly experience, especially when you’ve tried your very best not to over pack. Airlines have a baggage allowance policy for each passenger and exceeding the baggage allowance costs extra money.

Here are some tricks to help you organise your luggage with just what you would need for your next trip and still stick to the allowed baggage policy.

 

1)      Forget about the just incase outfits : Many travellers, both female and male, usually have this urge to put in extra outfits in their suitcases for the unexpected occasions that may turn up. This particular packing habit needs to be dropped as you will most likely pack up a lot of clothes you do not need and most likely will not even wear during your trip.

2)      Arrange your travel wardrobe: Before heading out on a trip, research on how the weather will be in your intended destination and also the most likely events or spots you would visit. This will help you plan out what type of outfits to pack up for your trip and keep away the unneeded items.

3)      Always include neutral outfits: These are outfits that have basic colours that practically goes with and looks good on any other colour. Black, grey, nude, white etc. This is reasonable, because it frees up the space of packing up 6 or 7 different outfits, when one neutral outfit could be packed and rhyme with every outfit you pair it with!

4)      Pack less shoes: This won’t be easy, especially for the ladies but packing less shoes is important. Apart from the fact that shoes have a lot of weight, you definitely won’t be needing so many pairs. Two to three pairs of shoe should serve for your trip, hence you need to plan what shoes would go better with your already selected outfits. Anne McAlpin, a packing expert, says “people often over pack shoes, but setting a maximum of three pairs will help you pare down your wardrobe and avoid over packing.”

5)      Use packing cubes: Using compression cubes or bags are becoming more popular with travellers. Compression technology is so vital to travel as it will assist to keep you organised and also save up space in your bag.

6)      Don’t be a last minute packer: A lot of people are guilty of this, packing just a night before your trip can be crucial and chaotic. Asides from packing a lot of item you do not need, you may also forget a lot of item you actually need and end up with a pretty heavy luggage.

 

Is flying first class really worth it?

 

Flying first class most likely means luxury seating on a plane, preferential treatment in services rendered, more comfort and most importantly, the very pricy flight fares! The kind of ‘exclusive’ flight fares that makes you wonder, if it’s really worth it?

On all occasions, when you get on a commercial plane, there are always the first-class passengers who are a limited number of passengers (usually not more than 10), who are seated towards the front of the airplane enjoying more space, comfort, service and privacy.

       

First class is categorized as airplane luxury. Different airlines provide different services and special treatment for first class passengers ranging from private suites, fast in-flight WiFi, access to exclusive lounges to even on-board showers. In turn, first-class flyers pay an expensive flight fare, which is way more than any other class of flyers.

 

First class travel experience includes being the first passengers on board the aircraft, averting the long waiting lines at the gates, extra large seats with enormous carry-on space, complimentary gifts from the airline, first class bar with champagne and all the other wonderful things you can think of. It’s arguably clear that the benefits of first class play in even before your flight takes off. Amazing, isn’t it?

Other flight classes include the business and economy. Business class is above economy class. Flying business class also offers a premium experience in flight with upgraded amenities and even before boarding, there are separate check-in for them and business class lounges that offers showers and nap rooms. The main difference between business class and first class is the seat type, as some first class seat types are generally bigger, having a private space or suite and may rotate or even turn into a bed unlike business class seats.  Also the price difference stands out between a first class and business class traveller. In most cases, a first class traveller is expected to pay about 60-200% more than a business class traveller.

What about the economy class travellers? Economy class is also known as standard class, which many travellers make use of.  Generally speaking, compared to the other cabin options of business class and first class, the seats in economy are smaller with less legroom. Also the level of service, flight entertainment, type of tv screens and food options are limited and surely you can not keep asking for more champagne. A lot of people argue that economy class is just a way of travel, comfortable enough to get you to your destination and the extra travel fuss is not needed. However, Ralph Waldo Emerson says “it’s not the destination, it’s about the journey.”

 

It is important to note that all seat types and options of in-flight service depends on what airline you are flying, as different airlines sets different service standards for their passengers.

 

Flying is a fun experience for many, however who wouldn’t love an extra luxury added to that fun?  It is said that ‘fly business class once and you’ll never be happy in economy again’.  The benefits of flying first class are so many, but we will leave it to you to decide in the comment section if it’s really worth the money or not?

 

Lagos Marriott Hotel Ikeja, now open.

The wait was definitely worth the while, as the newly constructed Lagos Marriott Hotel Ikeja, officially opens its doors to the public!

 

 Setting an almost unbeatable standard in the Nigerian hospitality industry, Lagos Marriott Hotel Ikeja stands out with 206 guest rooms and 44 suites, inclusive in all rooms are 55′ inches smart televisions, complimentary WiFi, exceptional Marriott luxury bedding, and many more amenities. 

Marriott brand, making a debut in Nigeria will definitely remain a lucrative move considering the population and level of travel in the country. Also, the location of the hotel is the heartbeat of Lagos making it close and accessible to a wide range of individuals.

 

The newly built hotel also has specially designed amenities for it’s guests including the Great room, the M Club for elite club members, a luxury spa, a fitness center, and an outdoor swimming pool, making it perfect for business and leisure and the modern-day travellers.  

Volker Heiden, the Marriott International – Sub Saharan Africa area vice-president stated: “We are excited to have opened the Lagos Marriott Hotel Ikeja, bringing ‘Marriott Hotels’ transformed vision to Nigeria.”

 

“Lagos is a vibrant and bustling city with much to see and do for leisure and business travellers.

 

“What better place to debut the Marriott Hotels brand in Nigeria with its thoughtful service and intuitive spaces that enable guests to be inspired during their stay.”

Marriott brand has a whooping 580 Hotels and resorts in over 60 countries across the world! The Marriott brand is of USA origin and is among one of the most popular hospitality brands in the world presently. 

Popina fine-dining restaurant of Ebonylife place is back!

Exciting news for Lagosians as Ebonylife Place located in Victoria Island, Lagos, well known as the classy multi-purpose event venue has reopened it’s luxury dining restaurant, Popina.

Popina fine-dining restaurant is one of a kind and will continue to have the attention of gourmet lovers! It was temporarily shut down on 19th March 2020 to comply with covid 19 precautionary measures and ensure customer safety.

 

Now life is slowly returning to normal and having fewer covid-19 cases, Popina fine-dining is back to steal the show!

 

Famous visible artist, Gerald Chukwuma put together the incredible style and design of the posh restaurant. The interior has a touch of elegant foreign features and a fusion of colorful African culture. There is also an enchanting poolside terrace for those who prefer fresh air and the outdoors.

       

Gavin Blaauw who is the chief chef elaborated on the unique menu having a rich blend of French methods, Italian flavours, native ingredients, and a top-notch meal presentation. 

Now the tip of the iceberg which a lot of people do not know of yet is that there is a 50% discount on three-course meals ordered from the common menu! This offer kicked off on Saturday 22nd May 2021 and lasts for seven days. The final day for this offer will be 28th May 2021.

 

Who wouldn’t want to be present at this glamorous dining with delicious cuisines at just half the original prices? Make those reservations on time now!

 

To book and for enquiries, +2349139264355 and also connect to them via Instagram on @popina.lagos

 

Explore Kwara state

It’s a thing of pride to learn more about your country’s culture and natural wonders!  It’s totally better to be well informed than having foreigners tell you about what you have in your own home country. Nigeria has a handful of captivating spots that lots of us do not know of.

 

Kwara state is a well-visited tourist spot in Nigeria and I bet you didn’t know that! Be rest assured to expect every and anything in this scenic wonderland! There are lots of exciting activities to do and places to visit in Kwara state. Just keep it at the back of your mind, you are in for an adventure of a lifetime.

 

Here is a glimpse at some places to explore in Kwara:

 

(i) Owu Waterfall: This natural delight is one of the most outstanding natural wonders in Kwara state and Nigeria at large. It is the highest waterfall in West Africa at 120m above the water level, cascading 330 feet down an escarpment. Visiting this waterfall and getting to dip in the icy pool at the bottom is an amazing feeling. Health professionals insist waterfalls play a major role in reducing stress levels, depression, and anxiety. So if you are having a moody day or just want to relax and get away from it, Owu waterfall is the place to be!

(ii) Dada pottery: Found in the Dada district of Ilorin, Kwara state. Dada Pottery arguably has the largest cluster of potters in the state. It is a sight to behold, coming in close contact with professional potters and watching art being created first hand. The amount of potters present, their dedication, and professionalism makes watching them and even trying to mold up clay yourself such a delight!

 

(iii) Esie Museum: The oldest and first museum in Nigeria established in 1945, holds many cultural and artistic features that date way back in time. It’s one of the most popular museums in the country and making a stop at the Esie Museum is a great way to adventure and enrich your mind with knowledge at the same time. 

(v) Emirs Palace/Central Mosque: The Ilorin Central mosque is the second largest mosque in Nigeria and it has a capacity of about 20000 worshippers! It is located at the Emir’s palace, Oja Oba. Also, around Oja Oba is the popular Ilorin Gold Souk/market so you can kill 2 birds with one stone.

     

(vi) Unilorin  Zoological Garden: Kwara state has it all and that includes a zoological garden with an incredible zoo for wildlife lovers. 

 

(vii) Aso-oke Weave Centre: The beautiful Aso-oke material handwoven by professionals dates far back to ancient African history and it remains one of the most recognized African fabrics worldwide. This art of cloth weaving began centuries ago among the Yoruba tribe, however predominantly in Kwara state, Oyo state, and Osun state.

When you think of touring Nigeria, do not forget you can get a journey filled with pleasurable moments in Kwara!

 

Water Fun

Water is truly a gift to mankind and daily we make use of water to do multiple things, like cooking food, washing clothes, cleaning the dishes, brushing our teeth, and very importantly drinking it to quench thirst. The list can go on and on, but have you ever imagined using water for fun activities?

There are lots of amazing sports and activities in the water that are so amusing! More interestingly many holiday destinations with beaches always have a larger number of tourists. 

Beach destinations are always known to be attractive and enjoyable for almost anything, from taking lit pictures to sunbathing, to various water sports! 

Day by day holiday locations surrounded by water or close to the ocean coast gain more popularity and the focus on making more water fun activities to win over tourists is on the rise!

 

“Water-full” destinations like Seychelles, Maldives, Goa beach, Inagbe beach resort in Lagos, Labadi beach resort in Ghana, etc have introduced multiple water engaging sports to keep visitors entertained. 

 

The ideal vacation spot needs to be different from what we are used to every day and that explains the concept of some people preferring a serene environment, tall trees, and clear blue water over mountain spots or snowing destinations.  Some Countries go as far as creating man-made beaches in a bid to beautify their environment and attract visitors, for instance, Palms island in Dubai, Sentosa island in Singapore, Camden beach in London are all man-made beaches!

 

palms, Dubai
Seychelles

When next you plan to set out to the beach, these are simple ways to enjoy yourself:

 

i) Water bucket relay:

In this game, there are two teams and two small empty transparent buckets placed behind each team. Each team member will have a big plastic cup while standing in the line of their teams. The teammates first in line will rush to the ocean and fill their cups up with water, then run back to the line and pass the water in their cups over their head to the next teammate’s cup without looking back. In the same manner, each teammate would do the same till the last team member pours what’s left in their cup into the transparent bucket. When this is done the last teammate rushes to the ocean, gets water, and continues the same process till the agreed time is up or in some cases, till the transparent bucket is filled up. The team with the most water in the transparent bucket wins.

ii) Building sandcastles:

Getting dirty and playing in the sand is a must when visiting the beach, especially when there is so much water to clean up afterward. Making sandcastles is lovely as you get to explore your creative nature! This involves using sand, water, and an empty bucket to mold up a castle of your choice from the mud.

iii) Parasailing:

One of the most popular water sports which does require a bit of bravery! Just imagine being connected to a parachute, in your swimwear and life jacket, then flying high above the ocean like a bird in the sky. 

parasailing

iv) Jet-skiing:

Any vacationer seeking fun would have this sport at the top of their list! This water vehicle is just like a motorbike on water, and the ocean waves make the ride on a jet ski unforgettable. 

jet skiing

v) Kayaking:

This is an exciting water sport that’s also like a form of workout because you would move most parts of your body. It simply allows you to move on the water in a flatwater vessel while paddling with a double-bladed paddle.

vi) Water gun:

This is an enjoyable outdoor game that can be played at parties, the beach, in a swimming pool, and definitely by adults too! It involves the use of a water gun and has different ways to play.  One of the ways to play this game is having a water war between two teams while trying to capture a flag or a water balloon from the other team. They go after each other, usually, when touched by water from the gun of the opponent team, you will freeze for few seconds before continuing to play or can be released when tagged by a fellow teammate.

It could also be used to play a beach ball race, where each player uses the water gun to push off their beach balls to the finish line, the first to reach the finish line is the winner.

Whether you are an adrenaline junkie or a calm sunbather, there is something fun for everyone to do at the beach. This list of activities can go on and on! Which one would you try on your next visit to the beach?

 

Egypt the land of attractions!

 

Africa has tons of amazing spots filled with scenic views, wildlife parks, beautiful beaches, ancient monuments and so much more, proving to be some of the most exciting tourist attractions in the world! However, so much of the World is unaware of this, unaware of how captivating Africa can really be!

 

When Rietha Matthee, an expert travel agent visited Egypt, she stated “It was a life-changing experience. All the things we saw and experienced were amazing and we fell in love with the country and would love to return.”

 

Egypt is an undeniable beauty to behold in the African continent. It’s found in northeastern Africa and arguably, it’s also home to the longest river in the world, the River Nile.

 

Egypt is a breathtaking destination with lots of wonderful attractions. This North-Eastern African beauty boasts scenic mountain landscapes, sun-kissed beaches, dazzling deserts, ancient pyramids, temples and so much more to explore.

                                                       

 

It’s worthy of being on every traveller’s bucket list because there are so many things to do and places to visit! If you want to relax by the pool or gleaming beaches or even prefer to tour the ultra-modern cities, exploring the ancient temples and pyramids, Egypt has it all!

 

Popular spots to visit in Egypt include the famous Ras Um Sid Beach and the beach at El Gouna, North of Hurghada filled with top-rated tourist attractions from cafés, Kayaking, windsurfing, Snorkeling, etc.

The Most Famous Beaches in Hurghada 2020 – Hurghada Beaches 2020

 

Other top attractions include exploring the great pyramid of Giza, Valley of the kings, diving into the Red Sea, White Desert National Park, Luxor temple, Egyptian Museum, etc

 

It is important for more people to explore the incredible African continent because there are lots of untold mesmerizing attractions in various African countries waiting for you to behold! It’s time to change the unpleasant narrative of Africa.

 

Book your next trip within the African continent and be that person to tell the world of just how blessed and attractive Africa is! 

 

Which other countries in Africa have you heard so much about and would love to visit?