Africa-QatarFor Qatar, a country that relies heavily on its hydrocarbon revenue, tourism has never been at the forefront of their identity. Recently, however, tourism is playing a pivotal role in diversifying the nation’s economy. In that vein, this past year the Qatar Tourism Authority has developed and unveiled a “Qatar destination brand” to position the country as a premium tourist destination offering an authentic experience rooted in the nation’s culture and heritage. H.E. Mr. Issa Bin Mohammed Al Mohannadi, chairman of Qatar’s Tourism Authority, stated, “The unveiling of Qatar’s first destination brand marks the beginning of a new phase in our journey towards achieving the vision for Qatar, to become a world class hub with deep cultural roots.”

Published in January - February

Africa-SASouth Africa is an excellent intro for anyone interested in Africa. Set on the southernmost tip of the African continent, South Africa’s cosmopolitan cities can be experienced side by side with the country’s rich African roots and recent Apartheid history. Add in abundant wildlife, natural beauty and a rich culture, and you are hard pressed to find that diversity anywhere else.
There is a lot to see in South Africa. If you’re an avid traveler, chances are you’ll pass through South Africa, en route to other Southern African countries; Namibia, Botswana, Zambia, Zimbabwe and Malawi. Whether your destination is South Africa alone, or you’re en route, do more than stretch your legs on a Jo’Burg layover. Get out and stretch your imagination and your sense of adventure.

Published in January - February

Egypt-largeThrough classical antiquity and early Christianity, visitors will find their origins in an Egyptian city where the arts, religion and government of any modern civilization developed.
More than 5,000 years ago Egypt was comprised of a group of autonomous city-states, the primary ones being Heliopolis; Memphis, the capital; Saqqara and Giza (Lower Egypt), the area of
modern-day Cairo.

Published in November - December

Africa-Israel
Because of the great importance of Jerusalem to Jews, Christians and Muslims as the place God chose to dwell during the world’s creation, centuries of kings and rulers have commissioned builders and artists to beautify it. Despite wars fought over its possession resulting in the destruction of several major monuments, Jerusalem remains a location of significant works of Hebrew, Roman, Early Christian, Muslim and Crusader endeavors - both above and below the ground.

Published in November - December

Africa-Zim
With some of the best safaris and luxury lodges, the countries of Zambia, Zimbabwe and Botswana have been gaining popularity year over year. In Zambia, for instance, authorities have expressed optimism that the country will be able to capture the targeted 1 million tourists arrivals by the end of 2015. The country’s Minister of Tourism and Arts, Jean Kapata, stated the increase was partly due to the 20th United Nation World Tourism Organization general assembly held in his country in 2013.

Published in November - December

Africa-SafariA safari vacation can be a bit on the pricey side no matter how you slice it. The term “affordable” is relative when considering a safari option. Of course, there are tips you should consider when trying to book a budget safari for your client. Consider having them travel in the off-season (in South Africa, for instance, the quieter May-July winter months offer cooler temps and better animal viewing), select owner-operated safari lodges and lesser-known game reserves. If your client is adventurous, have them try a self-drive safari. In some instances in Namibia and South Africa, the roads are good and parks fees low. Below are some options for a safari that won’t break the bank...relatively speaking.

Published in September - October

Africa-Egypt
Don’t send your clients to Egypt. Send them several times to gaze again and again in wonderment at the Great Pyramids, the Sphinx at Giza, the tombs of Nefetari and Ramesses I, the colossal statues of the Pharaohs, the temples at Luxor, Aswan and Abu Simbal.

Published in September - October

africa-israel“Wherever you dig in Israel, you find history-often layer upon layer of civilizations,” said Michal Neumann, who was guiding our small group of travel trade journalists on a whirlwind seven-day history-focused journey through Israel. Licensed guides in Israel undergo rigorous training and testing and meet ongoing requirements and can greatly enhance a visit. We were standing at the Israel Museum’s giant model of ancient Jerusalem as Michal unfurled five feet of cards listing the names and dates of the major waves of peoples who have left their marks here. The cards would come out throughout our trip, adding perspective to sites like Acre, where an Ottoman walled town sits atop remains of a medieval Crusader capital.

Published in July - August

africa-indaba
While on camera Mutirl wa Bashara offered his opinion of Indaba, Africa’s largest annual travel and tourism conference. He did it in French. Others said the same, whether in English, Zulu or any other language used in or out of Africa. The confluence of tongues was heard from dignitaries, those representing African countries and companies, and the international journalists reporting on the event, held at the International Convention Center in Durban (ICC), in KwaZulu Natal, South Africa.

Published in July - August

Africa-morocco
In the ancient Kingdom of Morocco, what’s old is always new. That’s especially true in Marrakech, from Jemaa El Fna, the famous square known for its snake charmers, storytellers and nightly food stalls, to the kaleidoscopic souks of the medina, or old town.

Published in May - June
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