Africa: National Geographic list Harar, Ethiopia Ruaha Park, Tanzania Tetouan, Morocco and Andringitra, Madagascar among Top 21 Tourism destinations for 2018


TANZANIA has been recommended as one of 21 best tourist destinations in the world ideal for 2018, according to international tourism experts.

Thus, featuring prominently and the National Geographic magazine has picked Ruaha National Park, as among four African destinations.

The magazine that is circulated worldwide in nearly 40 local-language editions and had a global circulation of approximately 6.5 million per month according to data published by The Washington Post, says Tanzania, and Ruaha National Park, particularly, should be visited as it is home to endangered African lions.

“Ruaha, Tanzania’s largest park, is home to about one tenth of the world’s endangered African lions. Sustainable tourism initiatives help visitors see the big cats—some grouped in prides of 30 or more—and support wildlife preservation in and around the park. Fun fact: The African lion population has decreased by 90 percent over the last century,” the magazine reads in part.

The Tanzania National Park (Tanapa) Corporate and Communications Manager, Mr Paschal Shelutete says the public corporation was proud of one of its parks being so earmarked and hopes the best is coming. “At TANAPA we are very proud of this and believe the number of tourists visiting the park will increase in the near future because of this recognition by National Geographic,” says Mr Shelutete.

Under a heading; ‘Places You Need to Visit in 2018’, the National Geographic says if one was looking for their next adventure, their editors would, through the information and photos, have them (tourists) discover new trails, tasting local cuisine, and spotting vibrant wildlife around the world.

National Geographic, formerly the National Geographic Magazine, is the official magazine of the National Geographic Society. It has been published continuously since its first issue in 1888, nine months after the Society itself was founded.

It primarily contains articles about science, geography, history and world culture. The magazine is known for its thick square-bound glossy format with a yellow rectangular border and its extensive use of dramatic photographs.
Controlling interest in the magazine has been held by 21st Century Fox since 2015. It is published monthly with additional map supplements included with subscriptions. The US has a circulation of 3.5 million copies, let alone online access.

Ruaha National Park was established in 1910 as a Game Reserve, and gazetted a National Park in 1964. The park, covering an area of 20,226 square km, is the largest in Tanzania and second largest in Africa. It is located 125 kilometres west of Iringa town.
The park could be accessed by road; 625 km from Dar es Salaam city, approximately 10 hours drive or 125 km from Iringa, about 3hrs driveon rough road. By air the park is also reachable by scheduled and chartered flights from Dar es Salaam, Arusha, Zanzibar, Dodoma or any other airport in Tanzania. It is always visited between May through October – the dry season and November to April when it is wet.

Tourism activities include game drive, short and long walking safaris. There is birding as the park is inhabited by more than 550 bird species. The species are such as ashy starling, yellow-collard lovebird, crested barbet, violet- crested turaco, Plovers, Kingfisher, African hawk and bateleur eagle.

It is also visited by Eurasian migrants including rare Eleanora’s Falcon and Sooty Falcon. Other tourism activities include filming, night game drive and picnicking. Major Tourist attractions, apart from the African lions, are large populations of greater and lesser kudu, roan and sable antelope, Great Ruaha River that is the lifeline of the park as well as high diversity of birds.

Other recommendations, by the National Geographic, for travel and tourism in Africa includes Harar, Ethiopia, said to be one of the most surprising city in the Eastern Africa. “Tourists in northern Ethiopia rarely travel to the laidback east, anchored by the enchantingly contradictory city of Harar. The ‘City of Saints’ boasts 82 mosques, as well as Ethiopia’s best beer, strongest khat (an ubiquitous narcotic plant), and highest quality coffee.

Fun fact: Hyenas are welcome night visitors in Harar, where they eat food waste and are fed by ‘hyena men’,” it says. Another attraction is in Madagascar–Andringitra Massif where there are endangered ring-tailed lemurs in the wild. Madagascar, the world’s fourth-largest island, is referred to as the undisputed land of the lemurs.

Located in the Indian Ocean east of Mozambique, the biodiversity hotspot is home to about 100 species of lemurs—almost all endangered due to deforestation, climate change and other threats. Madagascar separated from the Indian subcontinent about 88 million years ago. The other one is Tétouan, Morocco, where one could discover contemporary Moroccan art.

Traditional artisans still create carpets in this port city’s World Heritage site Medina, but a grassroots fine arts movement is attracting new talent. See contemporary works at the National Institute of Fine Arts, Tétouan Museum of Modern Art, and Green Olive Arts.
The place was rebuilt in the 15th century, Tétouan’s Medina is Morocco’s most complete. The National Geographic recommends other places as Jujuy Province, Argentina; Tbilisi, Georgia; Sydney, Australia; Oaxaca, Mexico; Vienna, Austria; North Shore, Oahu, Hawaii; Malmö, Sweden; Jordan Trail; Dublin, Ireland; Santiago, Chile and Phnom Penh, Cambodia. Others are Cleveland, Ohio; Seoraksan National Park, South Korea; Albania coast; San Antonio, Texas; Labrador, Canada and Friesland, Netherlands.


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