Proflight Zambia and Air Tanzania Forge Seamless Travel Experience with Interline Agreement

Proflight Zambia, Zambia’s leading commercial airline, has unveiled an exciting development in its quest to enhance passenger connectivity and travel options. The airline has officially entered an interline ticketing agreement with Air Tanzania, a strategic move aimed at providing passengers with access to new destinations and a seamlessly integrated travel experience within the region.

This innovative partnership facilitates a streamlined ticketing process, enabling travelers to effortlessly book itineraries that span both Proflight Zambia and Air Tanzania, all within a single ticketed journey.

Captain Josias Walubita, Director of Flight Operations at Proflight Zambia, expressed enthusiasm about the agreement, emphasizing its goal to deliver cost-effective and flexible travel options for passengers utilizing the services of both airlines. He stated, “We look forward to enhancing passenger experiences across both airlines’ routes.”

Eng. Ladislaus Matindi, Managing Director of Air Tanzania, highlighted the benefits of choosing their airline. He pointed out that passengers opting for Air Tanzania would become part of the largest network family, gaining access to improved connections and convenient travel options within Zambia’s domestic routes and four major cities: Dar es Salaam, Johannesburg, Durban, and Cape Town.

As the interline agreement takes effect, passengers can seamlessly book journeys that involve both Proflight Zambia and Air Tanzania flights.

Looking ahead into 2024, Proflight Zambia plans to introduce discounted fares for itineraries combining the two airlines. Examples include routes like Dar es Salaam to Johannesburg via Lusaka. These fares will be accessible through Proflight Zambia’s official website and Global Distribution System (GDS).

 Source: Airspace Africa.  

Kenya Airways Expands Flights to Nigeria: A Leap Towards Pan-African Unity and Tourism.

Kenya Airways amplifies its flights to Nigeria, offering daily services and strengthening Pan-African unity. The airline introduces an online e-visa application process and signs a codeshare agreement with Air Europa, expanding access to European and American destinations. Despite challenges, Kenya Airways remains committed to forging alliances and growing tourism.

On the cusp of a new era in African connectivity, Kenya Airways has announced its intention to increase flights to Nigeria, offering daily services to the nation. This strategic move, unveiled by the acting Kenyan High Commissioner to Nigeria, Samuel Mogere, during the Magical Kenya roadshow in Abuja, is set to fortify tourism between the two countries.

Currently, the airline operates four weekly flights between Nairobi’s Jomo Kenyatta International Airport and Abuja’s Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport. With the proposed expansion, Kenya Airways aims to strengthen its commitment to Pan-African unity and support the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area, a vital initiative designed to stimulate long-term growth across the continent.

A Symphony of Progress: Kenya’s Expanding Horizons.

In addition to the heightened flight frequency, Kenya has introduced an online e-visa application process, streamlining travel for individuals wishing to visit the nation. This digital transformation signifies a pivotal step in Kenya’s ongoing efforts to boost tourism and facilitate seamless travel experiences for its visitors.

As the second-largest airline in East Africa, Kenya Airways serves 41 international destinations in 35 countries. The airline holds the distinction of being the first African national carrier to successfully privatize in 1996, a testament to its enduring legacy and relentless pursuit of progress.

Forging Alliances: A Network of Opportunities.

In a bid to enhance access to European and American destinations for passengers traveling to and from East Africa, Kenya Airways recently inked a codeshare agreement with Spain’s Air Europa. This partnership is poised to open up a world of possibilities for travelers, fostering increased connectivity and collaboration between nations.

However, the road to progress is seldom without its challenges. In a recent episode, the Tanzania Civil Aviation Authority banned Kenya Airways flights from Nairobi to Dar es Salaam, in retaliation for Kenya’s refusal to permit cargo flights from Air Tanzania to land in Nairobi. Nevertheless, Kenya Airways remains undeterred in its mission to forge ahead and build a robust network of alliances.

The Journey Ahead: A Vision for Unity and Growth

As Kenya Airways sets its sights on raising tourist arrivals from West Africa, it is gearing up for roadshows in Nigerian and Ghanaian cities, including Accra, Abuja, and Lagos. The airline currently operates regular direct flights into these three cities, with other airlines also connecting Kenya to these bustling hubs.

The partnerships between the Kenya Tourism Board and the private sector are crucial in realizing its goals of improving tourism arrivals into Kenya. The upcoming roadshows, scheduled for February 5 through 9, 2024, will bring together over 400 travel trade companies and present an invaluable opportunity for the Kenyan trade to engage with West African travel agents and tour operators. By showcasing its diverse range of products and services, Kenya hopes to forge new partnerships that will drive growth and solidify its standing as a premier tourist destination.

In the grand tapestry of African unity and progress, Kenya Airways stands as a beacon of hope and determination. As it continues to expand its wings and reach for the skies, the airline remains steadfast in its commitment to fostering unity, boosting tourism, and creating opportunities for growth and collaboration across the continent.

Source: BNN

Dubai to host global medical information leaders at major congress in 2027.

Dubai has won its bid to host the 21st World Congress of Medical Informatics – MedInfo – the flagship biennial meeting of the International Medical Informatics Association (IMIA).

Dubai will be the first city in the Middle East to host the Congress. The winning bid was led by the Emirates Health Informatics Society and supported by the Department of Economy and Tourism (DET), Dubai Health Authority (DHA), UAE Ministry of Health and Prevention and Emirates Health Services, among other key stakeholders.

Dubai’s accessibility and connectivity should provide IMIA with improved reach into new markets in addition to enhancing MedInfo’s appeal to first-time attendees.

Helal Saeed Almarri (pictured), director-general of Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism, said: “Dubai’s success in bidding for MedInfo 2027 underlines the confidence that international associations across all sectors, including healthcare, have in bringing their major congresses to Dubai, and the powerful platform our city provides for knowledge sharing, professional development, and networking. It also reflects the culture of collaboration in Dubai and the ability of entities across the public and private sectors to come together to showcase the city’s strengths as a meeting destination.”

The pipeline of major conferences and congresses taking place in Dubai over the coming years includes key global medical and healthcare gatherings, with many bids championed by Dubai Business Events, part of DET and the city’s official convention bureau, in collaboration with DHA and Emirates Medical Society (EMA), as well as individual societies under its umbrella including Emirates Health Informatics Society, through its Al Safeer Congress Ambassador Programme.

The Dubai Department of Economy and Tourism (DET) has also awarded 70 hotels in Dubai with the ‘Dubai Sustainable Tourism Stamp’, a new sustainability initiative that seeks to recognise hotels with the highest level of adherence to DET’s 19 ‘Sustainability Requirements’. Dubai claims to be the first city in the region to mandate sustainability criteria for its hotel classification system, and the Dubai Sustainable Tourism Stamp (DST) initiative further reinforces its drive to become a leading sustainable destination.

Dubai has also secured the top spot as the No.1 global destination in the Tripadvisor Travellers’ Choice Best of the Best Destinations Awards 2024 for the third consecutive year. The recognition comes as the city marks the first anniversary of the Dubai Economic Agenda, D33, that aims to further consolidate Dubai’s position as one of the top three global cities for business and leisure, and the best city to visit, live and work in.

Dubai welcomed a record 13.9m visitors from January to October 2023 compared to 13.5m during the corresponding period in 2019. Average hotel occupancy between January to October this year has reached 76%, up from 74% in the same period in 2019.

 Source: CMW.  

No need to travel abroad as Kenya launches new initiatives to attract tourists.

As part of this visionary endeavor, the Kenya Tourism Board (KTB), the country’s marketing agency, revealed that its target is boosting tourist arrivals from West Africa by promoting business and leisure travel.

Acting KTB Chief Executive Officer John Chirchir emphasized the significance of this “West Africa Roadshow” program during a meeting marking the beginning of a series of roadshows in Nigeria and Ghana.

Chirchir highlighted the integral role of the West African market in the strategy to attract tourists, with Nigeria (6%) and Ghana (48%) showing the biggest improvements among Kenya’s potential markets in tourist arrivals in 2023.

With ambitious aspirations, KTB and Kenya Airways are leading over 15 travel trade companies for in-market activations scheduled for Feb. 5-9 in various cities of Nigeria and Ghana, expecting to attract over 400 trade partners.

Chirchir also expressed optimism that the Kenyan traders would engage in business meetings and direct interactions with potential travelers from Lagos, Abuja, and Accra.

He noted that regular flights between African cities, ease in travel restrictions, and the Electronic Travel Authorization will make it easier for visitors to access Kenya.

Speaking passionately during the meeting, Consaga Khisa, chairperson of the West Africa Roadshow, underscored the rationale behind prioritising domestic travel and the importance of partnerships between KTB and the private sector in improving tourism arrivals in Kenya.

“The roadshows will provide an opportunity for the Kenyan trade to engage with about 400 West African travel agents and tour operators, showcase products and service offerings, and forge new partnerships to drive growth,” Khisa said.

Reports from Kenya’s Tourism Research Institute showed that arrivals from Africa accounted for 651,152 visitors, or 40.7 per cent, of total arrivals from January to October 2023. In the competitive landscape of African tourism, neighbouring countries like Rwanda, Benin, The Gambia, and Seychelles have eliminated all visa requirements for African travellers to attract visitors.

 Source: Business Insider.

Kenya has what it takes to become a top medical tourism destination.

Kenya’s healthcare presents a paradox. There is a steady exodus for specialised treatments abroad, at the same time there is an influx of patients seeking Kenya’s specialised skills from the region.

A total of 569 patients were sent abroad for specialised care between 2021 and 2022, with India accounting for most of these referrals. In particular, 462 referrals or four out of every five patients, went to India, accounting for an outstanding 81.2 percent. Singapore, South Africa, and Israel are other markets where Kenyans sought specialised treatment.

The most common treatment sought abroad was open heart surgery (71 patients), followed by stem cell replacements (44) and bone marrow transplants (29). Other notable treatments were kidney transplants (11), liver transplants (21), radiotherapy (26), and arterial switch operations (20). Notably, 19 patients sought medical evaluation for wellness, diagnosis and alternative treatment options, and 17 travelled for chemotherapy.

The wide range of treatments sought highlights the equally diverse needs of people travelling abroad for medical care. Reasons advanced for India as a preferred destination for medical referrals include its perceived professional medical care at more affordable prices when compared to other markets.

While Kenyans seek advanced treatments overseas, Kenya paradoxically enjoys a strong reputation among its East African neighbours, attracting referrals from Tanzania, Uganda, South Sudan, Rwanda, Burundi, and Ethiopia. Additionally, its expertise draws patients from further afield, with referrals from Nigeria and even the Democratic Republic of Congo. According to the Ministry of Health, Kenya gets 3,000 to 5,000 medical tourists from other African countries.

Patients from these countries sought specialised treatment from both public and private hospitals. The Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital (MTRH), for example, received 250 patients from neighbouring countries seeking specialised treatment. Many others were treated in various public and private health facilities.

This demonstrates that Kenya can position itself as a leading regional medical tourism destination in East Africa and beyond, attracting patients from around the world and stimulating growth across multiple sectors. In addition to helping the healthcare sector, the ensuing economic growth would empower communities, generate new employment opportunities, and advance Kenya’s overall development.

The private sector will also play a key role in investing in advancing medical tourism in the country.

As we navigate through 2024, let us accelerate plans for a thriving medical tourism market in Kenya. If successful, a thriving medical tourism market would uplift lives and livelihoods.

Dr Kariuki is the KPMDC CEO.

Source: PD.

Diversity, authenticity, value for money: Report reinforces Dubai’s position as a global gastronomy hub.

Dubai, United Arab Emirates: A new report released by the Dubai Department of Economy and Tourism (DET) has underlined the city’s growing status as a leading destination in the global culinary landscape, with a 61 per cent surge in the amount residents are dining out, and a strong increase in satisfaction with the food scene’s value for money among international visitors.

The second annual Dubai Gastronomy Industry Report was shared with key stakeholders from across the gastronomy ecosystem – including restaurateurs, hoteliers, and key industry specialists. The report supports the industry by providing statistics and trends that both recognise progress and identify key growth areas for the coming year.

Dubai’s gastronomy excellence aligns seamlessly with the city’s broader economic vision outlined in the Dubai Economic Agenda 2033 (D33), which aims to double the size of Dubai’s economy in the decade up to 2033 and solidify its position among the world’s top three cities for business and leisure. The findings of the report also reflect wider recognition of the city’s gastronomic landscape, with accolades including two restaurants being named in The World’s 50 Best Restaurants, 15 in the MENA 50 Best Restaurants and the inclusion of 90 Dubai restaurants in the MICHELIN Guide Dubai 2023, up from 69 in the previous year’s edition.

With Dubai’s dynamic ecosystem currently boasting more than 13,000 restaurants and cafés, key takeaways from the report, which feature surveys of both residents and international visitors, include:

Growing enthusiasm for Dubai’s culinary ecosystem, with 69 per cent of UAE residents rating the city as the world’s leading gastronomy hub;

Dubai scoring second overall worldwide in terms of Restaurant Density;

A 61 per cent year-on-year increase in the average number of dining out occasions compared to 2022, up from 1.8 times per week to 2.9 times per week;

A substantial increase in the proportion of international visitors satisfied with Dubai’s value for money when dining out, up from 54 per cent in 2022 to 66 per cent in 2023;

Dubai Marina, Oud Metha and Downtown Dubai scoring best among Dubai’s dining destinations.

Ahmed Al Khaja, CEO of Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment (DFRE) commented: “As Dubai continues to build on its reputation as a world-class gastronomic destination, there are immense opportunities waiting to be harnessed for progressive and innovative stakeholders. This report explores the vibrant culinary tapestry of Dubai and provides first-hand insights into the city’s remarkable gastronomic journey. The rapid expansion of the industry, and the global recognition it has earned, is a clear indication that the emirate’s gastronomic evolution is not just a trend, but a cultural phenomenon underpinned by the myriad of cuisines and flavours drawn from the cultures of over 200 nationalities that call the city their home.

“We would like to express our gratitude to all those who contribute to shaping the Dubai dining scene – their passion and dedication have been instrumental in making Dubai a global gastronomic hub.”

The report also highlights the significance of three of Dubai’s most popular restaurants attaining MICHELIN green stars, evidencing the city’s ongoing commitment to sustainability, with future plans to further align with UAE Net Zero 2050, the national campaign to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050.

Looking ahead, the 11th annual Dubai Food Festival (DFF) is scheduled to take place from 19 April to 12 May. DFF 2024 will showcase the city’s ever-evolving culinary prowess, as well as the richness, diversity, and innovation of Dubai’s culinary scene through an enhanced lineup of events and activities. The festival will celebrate locally originated concepts, and Emirati and international cuisines, while highlighting Dubai’s capacity to respond to worldwide trends. DFF 2024 will also recognise the contributions of chefs, culinary trailblazers, gourmet influencers, and tastemakers who consistently inspire Dubai’s culinary landscape.

The Dubai Gastronomy Industry Report is produced by the Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment (DFRE) in line with Dubai’s objective to further its position as a global gastronomy hub. It delivers a calendar of culinary events that highlight the city’s year-round abundance of diverse, authentic, value-based, and experiential culinary experiences.

 Source: Zawya.  

Sheikh Mohammed emphasizes the role of tourism in Dubai’s economic growth.

DUBAI: His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, today visited One&Only One Za’abeel, the first vertical urban resort in Dubai.

During the visit, His Highness highlighted the pivotal role of the tourism sector in Dubai’s economic expansion. He noted the significant growth of the sector in recent years, driven by an increasing number of visitors. Strong partnerships between public and private sectors have been key to Dubai’s success in delivering exceptional tourism services and facilities, he said.

Dubai is shaping a bright future brimming with new possibilities, with initiatives and projects that are opening new horizons of growth, excellence and innovation, His Highness noted. The emirate has charted a unique path for sustainable development with a strong focus on creating an exceptional environment for investors worldwide to harness the vast opportunities emerging from the emirate’s rise as a leading global business and tourist destination. Dubai is expanding its world-class infrastructure to realise the vast growth promise of its various sectors, including tourism. His Highness stated that these efforts are accelerating efforts to achieve the goal of the Dubai Economic Agenda D33 to make the city one of the world’s top three urban economies.

Accompanying His Highness Sheikh Mohammed during the visit were H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of Dubai Executive Council; H.H. Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, First Deputy Ruler of Dubai, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance; and Mohammed Ibrahim Al Shaibani, Managing Director, Investment Corporation of Dubai.

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed was briefed about One&Only One Za’abeel, the first vertical urban resort in Dubai developed by Kerzner International. The latest addition to Dubai’s hospitality offerings features 229 opulent hotel rooms and suites distributed across 15 floors, as well as diverse services and an array of exceptional dining options crafted by a distinguished team of world-class chefs. The resort also has sports facilities and an infinity pool, the longest in Dubai, stretching 120 metres and soaring 100 metres above ground level.

The opening of the urban resort in early January comes at a time when the emirate’s tourism industry is experiencing significant growth, providing visitors with a wide range of choices. Recent statistics from the Department of Economy and Tourism in Dubai reveal that by the end of November 2023, the city had a total of 149,680 hotel rooms in 820 establishments. This marks a significant rise from the 145,000 hotel rooms in 794 establishments recorded at the end of November 2022.

Source: Zawya.

Kenya’s Passport 6th Strongest In Africa.

NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 11 – Kenyan passport holders can travel to 76 countries globally visa-free, a new data shows, indicating its growing prominence worldwide.

The latest data compiled by the Henley Passport Index also ranks the country’s passport at number 67 globally, together with Malawi.

The Seychelles passport is the most powerful on the continent at number 26, followed by Mauritius (30), South Africa (53), Namibia, and Lesotho at 65, as well as Eswatini (66).

The strongest passports include those of France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Singapore, and Spain, whose citizens can travel to 194 countries globally without the need to apply for visas.

Source: Capital Fm

Dubai crowned the No.1 global destination in the Tripadvisor Travellers’ Choice Awards for the third consecutive year.

Dubai has secured the top spot as the No.1 global destination in the Tripadvisor Travellers’ Choice Best of the Best Destinations Awards 2024 for the third consecutive year, making it the first city to achieve this remarkable milestone in succession. The recognition comes as the city marks the first anniversary of the Dubai Economic Agenda, D33, underscoring the success of the visionary strategy launched by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai. The ambitious agenda aims to further consolidate Dubai’s position as one of the top three global cities for business and leisure, and the best city to visit, live and work in.

Dubai’s top international ranking was announced by TripadvisorⓇ, the world’s largest travel guidance platform, in its Travellers’ Choice Awards for 2024: Best of the Best Destinations. These back-to-back accolades for Dubai assume even more significance because the winners are exclusively chosen based on the reviews of millions of global travellers as part of Tripadvisor’s community. The awards look at the quality and quantity of Tripadvisor reviews and ratings for hotels, restaurants and experiences in each destination over a period of 12 months between 1 October, 2022 through 30 September 2023.

Commenting on the occasion, His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai, Dubai’s consistent global accomplishments, especially in the economic sector, stand as a clear testament to the emirate’s progress in translating the vision of HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum into tangible successes and realising the ambitious goals outlined in the Dubai Economic Agenda D33, which aims to position Dubai among the top three global economic cities within the next decade.

“Dubai has earned the prestigious title of the No.1 global destination in the 2024 Tripadvisor Travellers’ Choice Awards for the third consecutive time, establishing the emirate as the first city worldwide to achieve such recognition. This accomplishment underscores our success and reflects the outcomes of our developmental efforts in this crucial economic sector. Our strategic goal is to prioritise visitor happiness and satisfaction, and we pledge to continue our efforts in ongoing development, supported by a strong partnership with the private sector. Committed to maintaining and surpassing these achievements, we look forward to even greater successes in the future,” Sheikh Hamdan said.

Sheikh Hamdan also commended Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism for its efforts in promoting Dubai’s tourism potential and introducing a range of options to meet visitors’ aspirations. He acknowledged the city’s commitment to providing excellent services, tourism facilities, and world-class infrastructure. His Highness also expressed appreciation for all the sectors and government entities that played a crucial role in Dubai achieving this milestone.

The repeated acknowledgement of Dubai as the world’s favourite destination is a testament to the city’s vibrant and diverse offerings, supported by world-class infrastructure, exceptional service at all touchpoints, and continuous collaboration between the government and private sectors. Combining homegrown talent, entrepreneurship and concepts with international investment and partnerships, Dubai’s unique proposition has seen tourism become a vital contributor to overall economic growth, accounting for over 10% of the city’s GDP.

His Excellency, Helal Saeed Almarri, Director General of the Dubai Department of Economy and Tourism (DET), commented: “Dubai’s unprecedented achievement of being named the No. 1 top global destination in the Tripadvisor Travellers’ Choice Best of the Best Destinations Awards 2024 for the third successive year has only been possible thanks to the outstanding efforts of stakeholders and partners across the tourism sector, and their strong response to the visionary leadership of HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum. One year into the Dubai Economic Agenda D33, and with the city striving to consolidate its status as a top global destination for business and tourism, the award acknowledges the efficacy of our efforts so far, while also further raising the bar for what we can collectively achieve.

“In an increasingly competitive international tourism ecosystem, Dubai’s consistent leadership in global metrics has been built on robust, ever-evolving infrastructure, a commitment to providing best-in-class services, and effective marketing and outreach that has seen the city identify, reach and satisfy a diverse range of travellers from around the world. Supported by our stakeholders, we will continue to take an agile approach to further elevate Dubai as a destination and meet our ambitious targets.”

The top Tripadvisor award is the latest addition to a series of global accolades bestowed on Dubai, further validating the city’s appeal as a multifaceted destination. In 2023, Dubai was ranked the No.1 city in the world to relocate to, in a report by financial services provider Remitly, and was ranked the best city in the world for remote workers by property consultancy Savills in their top 20 list of the 2023 Executive Nomad Index.

Additionally, Dubai was named the world’s No. 2 city destination in Euromonitor International’s Top 100 City Destinations Index 2023 and also ranked one of the top 10 cities in the Global Power City Index, in a report issued by the Mori Memorial Foundation’s Institute for Urban Strategies in Japan. The UAE was also named the second safest country in the world in 2023, according to findings revealed by Numbeo, the world’s largest database of user-contributed data about cities and countries worldwide. This recognition has further strengthened Dubai’s attractiveness as a top global liveability hub that provides a unique lifestyle, underpinned by high safety and security standards that allow travellers to visit the city with peace of mind.

His Excellency, Issam Kazim, Chief Executive Officer of Dubai Corporation for Tourism and Commerce Marketing, said: “This landmark achievement embodies the incredible spirit of collaboration between Dubai’s public and private stakeholders that has led to countless memorable experiences for our guests. Global travellers in search of a safe, secure, and easily accessible destination have embraced Dubai’s diverse attractions catering to various segments, including families, thrill-seekers, business visitors, and cultural explorers. They acknowledge the city for its distinctive experiences that are exclusive to Dubai.

“We are honoured by the continued appreciation and encouragement of our international visitors, with their reviews and ratings providing ample testimony for their cherished memories that inspire others to explore the exceptional offerings of our destination. As consumer demands and trends further evolve, and aided by the feedback we receive through Tripadvisor and other digital platforms, as well as directly from tourists within the city itself, we will continue to work with our stakeholders to maintain the highest standards across city’s offerings and services, and ensure visitors have an unrivalled experience in Dubai.”

Dubai’s exceptional quality of life, initiatives facilitating easy entry, robust air connectivity, and globally acclaimed culinary scene collectively establish it as the preferred destination for visitors. Dubai’s efforts to stay at the forefront of global tourism involve constant regulatory, infrastructure, and travel initiatives that play a pivotal role in further accelerating tourism momentum. In October 2023, Dubai and Real Madrid announced a landmark global partnership in October to further elevate awareness of the city internationally in line with the D33 Agenda to position Dubai as one of the top three global cities.

According to the latest data published by the Dubai Department of Economy and Tourism, Dubai welcomed 15.37 million international overnight visitors between January and November 2023, a 20% increase over the same period in 2022.

 Source:  Media Office.

Kenya features in Times’ 52 places to visit in 2024.

Kenya is among 52 places in the world to travel in 2024, according to latest New York Times annual travel list.

The paper’s experts have compiled this year’s list of destinations with sustainable travel and cultural events in mind as many regions realize slow but steady recovery from Covid-19 pandemic which hit international tourist arrivals hard.

The world renowned Tsavo National Park in Taita Taveta County has made it to the list as a favourite for would-be tourists. Africa has four key spots identified by the report in Madagascar, Morocco and Egypt as both captivating and alluring for tourists.

“From supporting local recovery in the aftermath of a devastating earthquake in Morocco and celebrating Africa’s most successful elephant rehabilitation programme at the Tsavo National Park, Kenya, to exploring textiles and contemporary art in Madagascar and Hurghada’s abundant marine ecosystem, The Times has travel ideas for every type of traveller,” reads an excerpt of the report.

In Kenya, the elephant population has grown by 21 per cent since 2014, to a total of 36,280. Almost half live in Tsavo, home to Africa’s most successful elephant rehabilitation programme, the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust.

The remarkable story of Tsavo has encouraged conservation projects abound, plus eco-lodges which have thereby contributed to the economic mainstay of the communities around through employment with tourists relishing the unique ecosystem.

International tourists

With important components therein like orphanages and clinics, the animals being protected in that enclosure have found a home worthy of note with international organisations engaging in partnerships to rehabilitate and do away with poaching. This in turn is attracting buzzing interest from local and international tourists to come and have a date with the over 40,000 animals total on location.

In 2024, the Trust plans to open the first lodge next to the Ngulia Rhino Sanctuary, dedicated to saving the critically endangered black rhino. In an effort to support “rhino activities” in the Tsavo West NP rhino areas, Tsavo Trust has partnered with the Kenya Wildlife Service by establishing a unique “Rhino Viewing Platform” at one of the main waterholes within the Ngulia Rhino Sanctuary. The aim being to offer visitors a rare and exclusive opportunity to view rhino close up with the backdrop of the prehistoric-looking Ngulia cliffs.

Morocco that recently suffered a strong damaging earth tremor that killed 3,000 persons, had some eye-catching attraction sites too, according to the report. “Places like Ourika Valley is considered dreamy as it sits just facing the majestic Atlas Mountain,” it says.

The place offers a variety of activities that tourists can love like fresh cuisine, hiking and horseback riding and it is near the centuries old Marrakesh City. In Madagascar, there are more than tourism aspects in play which offer wildlife viewing and wildlife exploration.

However, now the vibe in Antananarivo is all about Art as the scene explodes with the Capital City housing a magnificent Museum known as La Fondation H that opened its doors to the public last year in April.

The contemporary art space was created to showcase Malagasy talents. One of the star production legends Madam Zo has a dedicated area where her pieces of textiles, basketry and fabrics from Madagascar stand tall, the Times report adds.

Source: PD.