My dad and I are going to Africa this summer for about a month somewhere between june 15- july 15 and i am soooo excited but i have no idea where in africa to go. it took me long enough to decide i wanted to go to africa how can i decide where!
here are somethings i deffinatley want to see:
-the poverty and i want to help someway
-and i want to see a little of the beach because i know it beautiful
thanks so much!
oh and i forgot
i have to see the elephants
Elephants and rain forest don't match. If you want to see Elephants you need to go to the dry steppes.
While there is rain forest with Elephants, the traditional safari countries with the tourism infrastructure don't have it. Plus Elephants are difficult to see the forest.
South Africa would be perfect for you, or maybe Tanzania and Rwanda. You could loll on the beach near Sansibar, see Elephants in Serengeti and Arusha national park and then hit the mountains near the border to Rwanda and Uganda and see rainforest and mountain gorillas.
[ Edit: Edited on 27-Jan-2009, at 19:59 by t_maia ]
I'd plump for Kenya. Start on the coast at Malindi or Mombasa then head to Amboseli to see the elephants with Mt Kilimanjaro in the background and then over to the north west for the rainforest. Don't worry about seeing the poverty, you'll see plenty of that. Advice, if you want to help don't give money to beggars. Instead give money to a school so they can buy some things that will help educate the kids... that's the way forward. Sorry if this seems obvious but it's often easily overlooked.
Most of all, enjoy your trip, I'm sure you'll have a life-changing experience there.
Many countries to visit in africa!!. I would suggest east africa for you; Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania would give you the best of what you are looking for. I like the ideas you have about your trip; seeing animals, landscape and you mentioned about poverty. Poverty is not easily seen but experinced, so i would suggest you combine you trip with several days of community-based safari. -snip- We visited kenya and they orgainised community homestays for us, their itineraries are tailor made in the interest of the client. While in the community you will see real genuine opportunities to assist if you mean helping the poor. So try going to kenya mainly and some days you can easily go to tanzania and uganda.
[ Edit: Sorry, no promos please. ]
For elephants the best place is Botswana, the damn things are wandering all over the place!
The beaches can be pretty stunning all over the African coastline and there is poverty everywhere.
The country that probably ticks all of your boxes would be Ghana. I have not been there myself but they have elephants in Mole national park, rainforests and white sandy beaches. Poverty is a big problem as is wildlife conservation and you should have no problem volunteering out there. YOu could try having a chat with Ronny M, a member of TP who is secretary of a volunteer organisation in Ghana.
For your first trip to Africa, and I am probably going to be slated for this, but I would not recommend South Africa. Whilst it is a fabulous country, it has a totally different 'feel' to the rest of Africa. For example, they have a great infrastructure, poverty is there, but hidden away in places like Johannesburg. You would have to travel well off the beaten track to experience red mud dusty roads, children dressed in rags but having a wonderful time with home made toys, bustling markets, the smell of charcoal burning, baboons and warthogs wandering the streets, ubiquitous acacia trees, tribal villages complete with traditional dress and mud huts, roadside foodstalls, rediculously overloaded buses....... you get my drift? I wish I could sum up the sights, smells, sounds and the feel of countries such as Tanzania, Kenya, Mozambique, Rwanda etc. But you just have to experience it for yourself.
My second choice for you would be Kenya. Start at one of the beaches then travel up the rift valley from Nairobi as far as Kakamega to see the rainforest visiting many parks on the way including Naivasha, Nakuru etc. which are brimming with wildlife..including elephants. Any village would happily allow you to spend some time with them to assist in schools or buildings etc. A month is not long but do-able. I personally travelled Nairobi to Kakamega and back in three weeks. It was amazing and no problem in just an ordinary car.
Another alternative, but not sure whether you would have enough time would be Tanzania, the roads are dreadful but equally stunning beaches, the famous but oververly touristy Serengeti and Ngorogoro and you could continue along to Rwanda and maybe pop in for tea with the Gorillas?
Next on my list would be Mozambique (great beaches and wildlife), Malawi (beaches on the lake are wonderful)... do you want me to list all 52??
I would suggest you get hold of a copy of Lonely Planet 'Africa' and have a good read before you finally decide.
Have fun and good luck
thank you all so much i think i have decided on Ghana. i am so excited! time to start the rest if my research