EXPLOREMY LIBRARY
Travel & Outdoor
Travel Africa

Travel Africa

Edition 90

The only international magazine dedicated to exploring Africa's diverse attractions, national parks, wildlife, culture and history. Travel Africa draws on some of the world's top photographers, writers and experts to create an inspiring and practical resource for anyone interested in the world's most exciting continent.

Country:
United Kingdom
Language:
English
Publisher:
Gecko Publishing Ltd
Frequency:
Quarterly
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4 Issues

in this issue

3 min.
karibu

Well, what a year it has been! In my editorial for issue 89, back in January, I said it felt like the world was in a bit of a mess and that we had become more aware of the need to be kinder to each other and to the planet. And then Covid-19 came along, and it suddenly got very messy. We have all been challenged like never before, and the impact will be felt for many years to come. Yet amidst all this we have seen acts of extraordinary kindness, generosity and mutual support. Where there is darkness, there is also light. Some say that this will irrevocably impact the way we live our lives. Only time will tell what the ‘new normal’ will come to look like, but I wonder…

2 min.
yearning

At home in Dorset, whenever I watch the swallows departing at the end of summer, my heart goes with them and, although I could never live anywhere else, I miss Africa with an unbearable longing. Hardly a day goes by without me thinking about the Luangwa River winding in immense silver coils through the Zambian bush or wondering if it is raining in the Serengeti. Having been many times, I find it easy to conjure up images from previous safaris. A sleeping leopard in a fig tree, all golden sunlight and dappled shadow. A cheetah with burning agate eyes crouching atop a termite mound. A pride of lions with bloody jowls, padding through the dew-soaked grass in line astern after a night’s hunting on the plains. No wonder the big cats which…

1 min.
space

At Namiri Plains in the eastern Serengeti, the sense of space is intoxicating. A sea of grass and cloud shadows, rising and falling all the way to a horizon so wide and far away you can almost sense the curve of the earth as it rolls through the sky to meet the rising sun. Together with the animals that live here, it is why you come to Africa. A magic beyond price, that steals up on you and takes you unawares. A kind of madness, like the beginning of a love affair, that makes you wish you could drive for ever among the lonely inselbergs and never want the days to end. In our increasingly busy world such emptiness is hard to find, but Africa has room to spare. Botswana’s Makgadikgadi…

1 min.
wildlife

From Kenya to the Great Karoo, no matter where you stay, the sun rises and the book of Africa falls open, revealing a wealth of wildlife unequalled in its abundance and variety. Nowhere else can you watch a million animals on the move as migrating wildebeest and zebra follow the rains in columns that take days to pass. Only in Africa can you witness candy-pink clouds of flamingos in numbers beyond counting, or deafening colonies of carmine bee-eaters swirling over the Luangwa River in a continent that boasts 2792 bird species. Nor does it end there. Keep your eyes peeled and you may see pythons, chameleons, swallowtail butterflies, frogs and dragonflies like living jewels. But it is Africa’s iconic megafauna that take centre stage: elephant, buffalo, rhino, giraffe — and the big…

5 min.
staying in touch

Last night I found myself envying elephants. That might sound a little perverse. After all, compared with the challenges these great pachyderms face – drought, poaching, habitat loss – we pampered primates have it easy. But as I scrolled through photos of the Luangwa Valley in January, my last adventure before lockdown, I realised I was gazing longingly at the sheer tactile pleasure these huge animals were taking from each other’s company. In my pictures, jumbos jostle as they splash through a shallow lagoon. Youngsters tussle in the water, mothers shove babies onto the bank and adults cluster beneath a wild mango, their trunks exploring and caressing as they re-establish connections. There is no social distancing, no jumbo-sized face masks, no trunk sanitiser. And as for elbow-bumping, do elephants even have…

1 min.
cloud spotting

STRATUS Usually thick, grey and covering large portions of the sky, stratus clouds are the harbingers of dreary overcast weather. The higher cirrostratus (above 18,000ft) contains ice crystals that bend rays of light to create a halo around the sun. If they turn the sky bright white it often means rain or snow within the next 24 hours. Mid-level altostratus (between 6,000 and 20,000 ft) usually herald a storm, while the lumpy nimbostratus is a sign that somewhere down below is getting a good, steady dousing of rain. CIRRUS Thin and wispy, these are the high-flyers in the cloud world, forming only above 18,000ft where this is little water vapour present. They are blown into streamers known as ‘mare’s tails’ and usually point to fair weather. Cirrocumulus appear as small, rounded white puffs…