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36

French seems like an obvious choice: Spoken (to some extent, don't expect everybody to be able to communicate with you!) in 20+ countries, not much overlap with English, mostly standardized and easy to learn for English speakers (compared to Arabic or local languages), not limited to a specific region (unlike, say, Swahili which does enjoy some use as a ...


18

I'll answer your first two questions: Technically, the road can be done with a normal car, but practically it can't. Too many bad patches, particularly between southern Egypt and northern Kenya or Uganda. That same stretch is also the most insecure. People are kidnapped, robbed and murdered on that stretch, though plenty, particularly locals, do travel the ...


18

I was in a situation where I had to mail in my passport for a visa - no problems for me. Allow an additional week in addition to the embassy's processing time, even if you choose next-day mailing options. Most importantly, use a reputable courier service (DHL/UPS/FedEx) with tracking capabilities. It's also likely that the embassy will require you to send a ...


18

I face similar problems travelling to winter locations. Stay hydrated. Keep water right where you sleep. Practice good skin care, moisturizers, lip balm, nasal moisturizer (yes, that's a thing ;) Bring/buy a room humidifier. Even boiling a pot of water will help. Sleep with you head under a sheet On the plus side, every day will be a great hair day!


15

According to this Wikimedia image you can find cheetahs around Africa and Middle East. Image is in public domain One of the easiest places to see Cheetahs (I saw a lot there) is Masai Mara National Park (Kenya).


15

Whether it is possible to see the Red Sea from Ethiopia depends on Air conditions Altitude Whether the view is blocked by other high-altitude land or not For the last two points we have the website HeyWhatsThat, which uses information on topography to generate "views" from mountains all over the world. Browsing the map close to the Ethiopia-Eritrea border ...


14

Take a look at http://www.claudiocorallo.com/ His story is amazing, and he is probably one of the best cacao producers in the world. They do the whole growing of cacao to sell and they produce their own chocolate also. I know of a friend that went to Claudios farm in S. Tome e Principe and they have a guided tour where they explain the whole process of ...


12

As an aside, I would HIGHLY recommend "Swahili for the Brokenhearted" by Peter Moore. An Aussie travel writer (who I was fortunate enough to meet and hear speak at a travel show in London) he went overland from from Cape Town to Cairo, and the book would give you a great insight into what you might expect. Africa is VERY different to Europe, including ...


12

Assumptions Let's make some assumptions: The question "how far can I see?" can be answered by asking "how far is it to the apparent horizon?" It is possible to calculate the distance from a point to the apparent horizon By this definition, a taller vantage point allows to see farther than a lower one The minimum height above sea level in Ethiopia is 2000m ...


11

An acquaintance of mine has traveled extensively throughout Africa -- every country bar Rwanda and Somalia, to be precise -- and he did it using six different passports, with no problems. (And before you ask, he's a diplomat, and you need a lot of passports when traveling to tinpot dictatorships that take weeks to process visa applications...) In case that'...


9

I like that you are keen to try different food and local customs, but as a South African, I can tell you that "game" meat is not such a big deal or favorite for us as you might think. Most South Africans eat the "normal" western meat options, ie beef, pork, lamb, chicken, and only rarely will you find variations on those. We see most game meats as a type of ...


9

3G internet in Sierra Leone (which I'm currently using to write this answer :-)) is surprisingly good in Freetown, major cities like Bo and most spots on the peninsula. It's expensive by international standards, but not punishingly so. Outside of those areas, e.g. in the villages, there's very little, though in some places I believe some villages have ...


8

It seems that it depends if your friend want to get close to the mountain itself. It may be possible to get there overday from Nairobi to get som distant glimpses but it does not seem viable to go back and forth and do some climbing. This is also confirmed by a thread at kenya-advisor.com. There are several companies that arrange trips to the mount kenya and ...


8

Again, there are thousands of species in South Africa. There are 91 species of Antelope in Africa, MANY of which are in South Africa. Then there's all the game fowl, other birds, reptiles, amphibians and more. However, ones you SHOULD try you did pretty well with. Crocodile, Kudu, Warthog, Ostrich - good job. You also want to try Wildebeest - and ...


8

Obviously it depends on where you go, and when you go. Different areas have different bugs, there is the malaria belt, and you'll need Yellow Fever vaccinations for some countries. The simplest answer to all this, especially if you're paranoid: be as prepared as you possible can. What this means: Have all appropriate vaccinations. This includes the ...


8

STP Airways has a weekly flight leaving from Lisbon. If you are willing to make a connection or fly on different date, Wikitravel has other options: Air Nigeria flies between Lagos & Sao Tome via Libreville on Tuesdays and via Douala on Thursdays. On Tuesdays TAAG Angola Airlines flies to São Tomé from Luanda (flight DT511, [3]). On Thursdays & ...


8

If you are really on the lookout for cacao and chocolate from start to finish, Chuao in Venezuela is the place to go. They do not have an official 'assist on the plantation' arrangement, but local life revolves around the process, and you will certainly be able to see every part of it, and taste the products at various stages. In my opinion, the BEST ...


8

The beaches of Sierra Leone are perhaps the most beautiful beaches in the world. In case you were around in the 1980s and remember the Bounty (chocolate bar) commercials, featuring a gorgeous woman on an even more gorgeous beach, these commercials were shot in Sierra Leone. I don't think diving or snorkelling is a big thing in Sierra Leone, but it's ...


8

Is it advisable to dive/snorkel in that region of the world? There is some recreational diving and snorkelling in Sierra Leone, but not much. As well as challenges related to the economic situation and low tourism, the water visibility is usually pretty bad (this is true for most of the West African coast), and the currents are complicated and strong - ...


7

Info from 2010: If you stick on the main road you will find it asphalted nearly all the way. Each meter from Cape Town to the Tanzanian/Kenyan border is asphalted (through Tanzania, Malawi, Mozambique). You will be amazed (roads have been financed and built by international charities). You will only do a few hours on dirt tracks in the whole trip. So from ...


7

Of course it's possible, people do it every week every year. Last year I even cycled it (blog.samt.st) Is this highway passable from the start to the end with a normal car? Yes. The vast majority of cars in Africa are very old, so your 'normal' car will be fine. Are there dangerous regions that I have to cross? Northern Kenya was dangerous, now it's safe ...


7

Fortunately, there are experienced travellers who have done these sorts of trips in the past. The various roads in Africa sometimes form together to make the Trans-African Highway Network. When possible, using these would be optimal as they'd be more serviced, more frequented, better condition roads, and arguably safer. You'd be joining Route 1 initially, ...


7

Certainly much of Africa has them in their natural habitat. Tourist wise, an easy option is a flight to JHB (Johannesburg), and then east a few hours by car to Kruger National Park. I can personally attest that they are there - I have photos to prove it ;)


7

If you want to do it cheaply than you would be best off if travelling on your own (with a Lonely Planet guide, probably optimal group size is 4). I found public transport in Uganda reasonably usable between major cities (not very comfortable though), and in national parks you can always hire a guy with a 4x4 (to get around and do a game drive). Regarding ...


7

Botswana is generally recommended as quite safe. The UK government's travel advisory seems to support this (if it sounds scary to you, just compare it with those of some countries you know - a "general threat of terrorism" seems to be listed for every single country in the world).


7

There is no international ferry operating on lake Victoria, scheduled or otherwise. There is a scheduled ferry between Mwanza and Bukoba, both in Tanzania. It is possible, however, to travel from, specifically, Kampala to Mwanza, by boat. But, this basically requires going to the port and asking around for a berth on one of the cargo ships. I've not heard ...


6

It is not possible to climb Mt. Kenya in one day. The usual route is 3days. Also cars are not allowed in the whole park. What you could do is driving to the entrance and than walk to one of the huts at, let's say 3500meters. So it is definitely a several day long trip... But it's worth it. I went to Mt. Kenya from Sandai Farm. They organizided everything. ...


6

I have never come over any ATMs with dollars in Tanzania. I have lived in Arusha for a year (2004/2006) and have been there off and on since. I seriously doubt you will find any such ATMs. The country is however flooded with ATMs, though the one at Kilimanjaro airport was in disrepair around two months ago, last time I passed through that airport. ATMs with ...


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