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Trek with tuskers + empowering women + we’re hiring
So I have a question
But first, this: Thanks to every one of you for being in our tribe; it’s an honour to share Africa’s awesomeness with you. And a very special note of thanks to those who travelled with us this year. As a social enterprise focusing on doing good for Africa’s wild spaces and her people, we rely entirely on revenue generated from safaris to pay our not-insignificant costs. Remember to start planning your 2023 safari now. After more than 30 years in the safari business, we know what, where and when – but space at Africa’s greatest prime season experiences is often limited as increasing numbers of people yearn to reconnect. Safari njema, good people.
Now, to my question: Is it ok to offer safari discounts to local people?
As you know, we are currently offering huge discounts (up to 75% off) at Botswana’s top lodges over the next few months – but only for SADC residents.
Look, let’s not mince words here; going on safari is a leisure option only affordable to a small minority of humankind. What we are talking about is a strategy by lodge owners to widen the net slightly to allow relatively well-heeled locals a brief glimpse into an otherwise unattainable paradise and to earn at least some revenue to cover costs over an otherwise very slow seasonal period for tourism – staff salaries and anti-poaching being amongst the highest overheads.
Please let me know your considered opinion. Comment below if you are reading this on our app; otherwise, email me to share your thoughts.
Keep the passion
Simon Espley – CEO, Africa Geographic
TRAVEL DESK UPDATES:
Affordable Madikwe – 4 days – US$870
See the Big 5 in a malaria-free reserve in South Africa. Madikwe Game Reserve is a prime safari location – only a stone’s throw from the Botswana border – offering excellent wildlife viewing in one of the country’s most diverse ecosystems. It’s no wonder this is one of our most popular safaris.
Cape Town and Khwai – 9 days – US$2,940
A treat for the safari connoisseur. We’ll romance you with the Mother City’s hip restaurants, white beaches, historic wine estates and iconic landmarks. Then, we’ll whisk you off to Botswana – where you’ll be bewitched by the ebb and flow of the Okavango Delta’s life-giving floodwaters in Khwai.
From our Editor – Taryn van Jaarsveld
Kenya’s Tsavo National Park is the best place to see tuskers – the last remaining giant elephants still roaming our world. But did you know you can experience this national park on foot, following in the tracks of Tsavo’s giants? Norman Owen-Smith set out on the 100-mile (160km) Great Walk along the Tsavo River with AG. Read about his journey in our first story.
Our second story is a powerful piece on the realities facing women living in Africa’s rural and conservation areas. These women are particularly vulnerable to crises, due to low job security and discrimination. In a post-pandemic landscape, empowering women in the tourism sector is helping communities recover, contributing to economic empowerment. Read more below.
Happy celebrating Africa
Dare to walk in the footsteps of tuskers on Tsavo’s Great Walk? Norman Owen-Smith traversed 160km of this Kenyan wilderness
Women in rural Africa are vulnerable to crises. Empowering women in tourism aids economic recovery in a post-Covid landscape
From our Scientific Editor – Jamie Paterson
Experts estimate that 30-50% of the global human population has been exposed to a microscopic parasite called Toxoplasma gondii. This protozoan can only complete its sexual lifecycle in felid hosts, yet infection of other hosts precipitates a wide range of aberrant behaviours. Behaviours that seem to serve the parasite well.
For example, infected hyena cubs are more likely to be killed by lions. Similarly, exposed chimpanzees have an increased risk of encounters with big cats and rats are attracted to cat urine. Now, did you know that scientists have just discovered that Toxoplasma also appears to impact wild wolf behaviour? In this case, it doesn’t seem to make them more likely to “sacrifice” themselves to the nearest hungry cat. Instead, infection with the protozoan makes them 46 times more likely to become a pack leader – potentially affecting the dynamics of an entire pack.
And its behavioural effects on humans? Hotly debated, but it is simultaneously terrifying and fascinating to wonder at the potential influence of this all-but-invisible force of nature.
Attention marketing fundis! AG is looking for a Marketing Manager to join our team. If you’re a hands-on digital marker with a passion for travel and conservation, and want to make a real difference in Africa, this is for you. Check out the full job specs here…
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