For obvious reasons, the most convenient means of reaching Africa is by air, either from Europe or North America or Asia or Australia. There are international airports in the African countries but bear in mind that only a few offer international flights each day, or in some cases, each week.
There are more flights to Africa from Europe than from any other continent. Popular holiday destinations such as Egypt, Morocco, Cape Verde, & South Africa are well-served from Europe's major cities, even with discount and charter airlines. Royal Air Maroc, Afriqyah Airlines, Jet4you & Egypt Air have a good selection of European destinations and Ethiopian, Kenyan, South African, & Arik Air serve a couple of major cities (London, Paris, etc.). The cheapest flights to African cities are often through the African country's former colonial power. Cities with large immigrant populations such as London, Marseilles, & Paris have a good number of flights to Africa.
European airlines flying to Africa are:
- Air France carrier serving French-speaking Africa, with service to most major cities of West, Central, & North Africa along with service to Johannesburg, Cairo, Tripoli, Madagascar, Mauritius, Reunion, & Djibouti.
- British Airways way to fly to former British colonies, they have service to Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, South Africa, Ghana, Nigeria, & Egypt along with Algeria, Tunisia, Libya, Mauritius, & Angola.
- Brussels Airlines flies from Brussels to most francophone countries in West and Central Africa along with Entebbe (Uganda), Nairobi, (Kenya) & Luanda (Angola).
- Lufthansa flies to major cities in North Africa, Ghana, Nigeria, South Africa, Angola, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Ethiopia, & Eritrea.
- TAP Portugal flies to former Portuguese colonies (Cape Verde, Guinea-Bissau, Sao Tome & Principe, Mozambique, Angola) and South Africa, Algeria, Morocco, & Senegal.
Many European discount airlines serve major tourist destination in Africa (especially Morocco, Cape Verde, Tunisia, Egypt, & the Gambia), including Jetairfly, EasyJet, & Corsairfly.
From the Americas
The only countries with direct flights to Africa are the United States, Canada, Cuba, Venezuela, Brazil, & Argentina.
From the United States, these are routes operated as of December 2009:
- New York-JFK: Delta Air Lines to Johannesburg, Cairo, Abuja (via Dakar), Accra; EgyptAir to Cairo; Royal Air Maroc to Casablanca; & Arik Air to Lagos.
- Washington-Dulles: South African Airlines to Johannesburg (via Dakar); Ethiopian Airlines to Addis Ababa (via Rome);United Airlines to Accra
- Atlanta: Delta Air Lines to Johannesburg, Accra (begins 2 June 2010), & Lagos
- Houston: charter flights for oil workers to Nigeria and Angola
TAAG Angolan Airlines offers flights from Luanda to the Brazilian cities Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo, Salvador de Bahia (seasonal), & Recife (seasonal) as well as a weekly flight 1to Havana via Sal.
South African Airways offers flights from Johannesburg to Sao Paulo & Buenos Aires. There are seasonal flights from Caracas to Tenerife-North in the Canary Islands. Malaysian Airlines flies Buenos Aires to Johannesburg. Turkish Airlines and Emirates both have flights from Sao Paulo to the Middle East which make stops in West Africa (Dakar or Lagos).
From Asia & the Middle East
If you're flying to a small African country, Africa's major airlines all have extensive coverage in Africa and fly to a handful of Asian destinations:
- Ethiopian Airlines: Bahrain, Bangkok, Beijing, Guangzhou, Hong Kong, Chennai, Delhi, Mumbai, Tel Aviv, Beirut, Kuwait, Jeddah, Riyadh, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Aden, Sana'a
- Kenyan Airways: Bangkok, Guangzhou, Hong Kong, Beijing, Mumbai, Dubai
- South African Airways: Mumbai, Hong Kong
- Emirates flies from Dubai to: Abidjan, Accra, Addis Ababa, Cape Town, Dar es Salaam, Durban, Entebbe, Johannesburg, Khartoum, Lagos, Luanda, Mauritius, Nairobi, & Mahe.
- Qatar Airways flies from Doha to: Cape Town, Johannesburg, Nairobi, Dar es Salaam, Mahe, & Lagos.
- Turkish Airlines flies from Istanbul to: Dakar, Addis Ababa, Nairobi, Cape Town, & Johannesburg.
Other flights from East and South Asia include the following:
Cathay Pacific flights to Hong Kong. Furthermore, due to increased Chinese investment many cities have service from Beijing, cities with direct flights to Beijing capital include Luanda, Algiers, Lagos, Khartoum, Addis Ababa, & Harare.
Malaysian Airlines serves Johannesburg from Kuala Lumpur.
Korean Air serves Cairo from Seoul.
Air Austral flies to Bangkok seasonally from Reunion.
Air Seychelles flies to Singapore and Male from Mahe.
Air Madagascar flies from Antananarivo to Bangkok & Guangzhou.
Air Mauritius flies from Mauritius to Bangalore, Chennai, Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur, Mumbai, & Singapore.
The best option to fly from East or South Asia is likely on Emirates or Qatar, both of which have a decent selection of destinations in Asia & Africa, or via Europe on airlines such as British Airways, Air France, or Lufthansa which all offer an extensive number of destinations across Africa.
There are only a handful of connections to Australia, primarily to Johannesburg. Flights from Johannesburg include: Perth (South African Airways), Melbourne (V Australia, begins March 2010), & Sydney (Qantas).
There are also flights to the Indian Ocean islands of Reunion & Mauritius, including: Air Austral (Saint Denis-Sydney), Air Mauritius (Mauritius-Perth, Mauritius-Melbourne, and Mauritius-Sydney [beginning 5 July 2010]).
By road / ferry
Africa’s land connection to another continent is the 163km-wide Isthmus of Suez, which is found in Egypt .Thus the only way to drive into Africa is to drive through Egypt. Most people driving from the Middle East to Africa travel through Jordan and take a short car ferry to Egypt to avoid transiting Israel, since Egypt's two African neighbors (Sudan & Libya) deny entry for persons with Israeli stamps or Egyptian/Jordanian stamps indicating travel to Israel.
Despite there being just one, narrow land crossing into the continent, there are other ways to bring vehicles into Africa by short car ferries. The short crossing of the Strait of Gibraltar between Spain and Morocco is crossed by several ferries daily and relatively inexpensive.
Many Mediterranean cruises stop in North African countries such as Egypt, Tunisia, Morocco, the Canary Islands, & Cape Verde. Some ocean liners will stop in the Canary or Cape Verde Islands on trans-Atlantic crossings or in South Africa, Madagascar, Zanzibar, the Seychelles, or Mauritius on round-the-world trips.
Elsewhere is Africa, cruises are limited to luxury or 'boutique' cruise lines often aboard small vessels and quite expensive or "freighter cruises" which do not offer much to "passengers" but may spend a few days in a handful of ports.
The Seychelles, Reunion, & Mauritius are popular destinations for yachts and private vessels, but piracy around the Horn of Africa has kept a lot of the European vessels away.
A safari to Africa deserves the right preparation. Africa is not like any other vacation destination. You need to take into consideration the design or fashion of your safari clothing, be it the style, the colour, lightness or thickness of tour clothes, hat, shirt, jeans, vest and shoes depending on the type of safari you’re taking. Khaki clothing is usually the most preferred African safari outfit. Clothes in Africa may be the best for any safari for instance walking safaris and others. The following is a list of what is recommended for an African safari;
- One Pair of smart / casual trousers
- 4 shirts / T-shirts
- 1 light cotton dress for the ladies
- 2 fleece / jersey for the cool evenings
- 1 wind-breaker / water proof jacket
- 1 warm jacket
- 1 pair of walking / running shoes
- 1 pair of sandals / reef shoes (useful for showers)
- Underwear and socks
- 1 swimming costume
- 1 sun hat, 1 towel, toothbrush / toothpaste,
- Comb / hair brush
- razor & blades (preferable battery operated shaver)
- Suntan lotion / sunblock
- Hand cream & moisturising cream
- Insect repellent, bug spray
- Tissues or disposable moist tissues
- Plastic bags (to pack wet / dirty clothing)
- Sunglasses / Spectacles
- shampoo & hair conditioner
- Plasters / band aids
- Aspirins / paracetamol
- Anti-diarrhoea pills (consult your pharmacist for advice)
- Throat lozenges
- Antiseptic cream
- Anti-malaria pills
- Self testing malaria kit
- Fungal infection powder
- Rehydration powder
- personal medication
- Eye drops, Sunscreen, Moisturiser
- 3 pairs of shorts
Accommodation in Africa
The number of hotels in Africa has grown enormously in recent years and wherever you travel and whatever your budget you will seldom have a problem finding suitable accommodation. Most countries have a good variety of moderately priced and budget hotels and even the smallest towns will usually have somewhere you can stay for a couple of dollars. Accommodation in Africa offers you a selection of the very best luxury wildlife & game lodges, African holiday resorts & accommodation in superior and first-class hotels plus excellent guest houses in sub-Sahara Africa. Accommodation in Africa is placed in four categories including; luxury or upmarket, moderate or mid range, budget and camping.
Luxury or upmarket
This category embraces all hotels, lodges and resorts that cater primarily to the international leisure or business traveler and would probably be accorded a two to four star ranking internationally. This is the category to look at if cost is not a major consideration and you require hotel accommodation that of a standard you would expect at home.
Moderate or mid range
This embraces those hotels which for one or other reason could not truly be classified as upmarket but are also expensive or of a sufficiently high standard that they cannot be considered budget lodgings. It embraces decent hotels or lodges in recognized tourist areas that charge considerably lower rates than their luxury competitors but are clearly a notch or two above the budget category. This is the category to look at if you are traveling on a limited but not a low budget and expect a reasonably high but not luxurious standard of accommodation.
The hotels in this category are generally aimed at the local market and they definitely don’t approach international standards but they will usually be reasonably clean and comfortable and a definite cut above the basic guest houses that proliferate in most towns. This is the category to look at if you are on a limited budget but want to avoid total squalor.
There has been a number of great increase in the number of organized campsites in recent years and there are now very few established tourist centres where you can’t pitch a tent in a guarded site with good facilities.
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