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Sherwin's #TTCTOP10 BUCKET LIST

January 13th, 2020, by Sherwin Banda
A new year brings new adventures and I’m eager to fill it with travels.  I’m blessed to have been born in Africa and look forward to discovering new places and rediscovering favorites on the continent.  I also can’t wait to explore a few new destination experiences with my family recommended by my The Travel Corporation colleagues.   Whether you like going it alone or in a group, traveling as a family, or a couple, I hope my #TTCTop10 Bucket List inspires you!
 

My Top 7 Africa Places

The next ‘it’ family spot

Africa is a wonderful place to experience with family.  While I love showing my son my South African homeland, I can’t wait to take my family on our Beyond the Rainbow to Zimbabwe. The country is somewhat overlooked and unexplored but you’ll not only be awed with a different perspective on Victorial Falls, but also by some of the greatest game-viewing on land and water safaris.  For another fantastic family option, especially mutli-gen gatherings, I recommend Best of Botswana and Victoria Falls.  
 

Conservation and meaningful connections

So many travelers want authentic connections and to help the planet. My answer:  go to Kenya!  At Lewa Wildlife Conservancy, for instance, you’ll learn about their rhino rehabilitation efforts and experience wildlife through horse and walking safaris.  In Kenya’s north, visit the singing wells of the Samburu tribe and observe the warriors perform an age-old tradition as they chant and collect water for their cattle. I plan to visit Kenya with my son and add a 4-day ME to WE experience helping a local northern Maasai Mara community. It’s a great way for him fulfill a class project with real world impact and for us to experience giving back together.  

 

Botswana’s new eco-safari lodge

Wherever I travel, I always look for ways to re-connect with nature, so I am very excited about Xijera, the new Red Carnation Hotel Collection safari lodge.  It’s set in the Moremi Game Reserve in the heart of Botswana’s Okavango Delta where wildlife viewing is incredible.  The area is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the Seven Wonders of Africa, where over a third of the continent’s elephants roam.  I can’t wait!

 

Extraordinary Adventure

For my more adventurous friends, and anyone looking to be surprised by the extraordinary, I highly recommend our Discover Rwanda.  The country’s variety of wildlife viewing and new lodges is drawing travelers but it’s the people and the beauty of “the land of a thousand hills,” that is stealing hearts. A tip though, permits are limited to see the country’s star attraction—the endangered mountain gorilla—so start planning now. 

 

Ultimate desert safari

I always like to look for new ways to go off the beaten path on safari. Namibia Desert Escapes, African Travel’s flying safari, delivers this with a one-of-a-kind desert safari exploration in one of the most other-worldly places on the planet.  I’m always amazed by Namibia’s contrasts and love to explore the wildlife rich Etosha National Park, the red sand dunes of Sossusvlei and shipwrecks along the Skeleton Coast.  Creatures here continually adapt to their harsh environment, which is really something to behold.

 

Africa’s magical islands

The islands of Africa from Mozambique to Zanzibar are often overlooked but are some of my favorites. They boast pristine beaches and are easily combinable with a safari experience. Right now, I’m fascinated by one and Magical Madagascar is calling.  Often referred to as the eighth continent, this island is home to 5 percent of the world’s wildlife and vegetation. The year-round 70-degree Indian Ocean is also a huge draw to me, as is seeing 11 species of lemurs!

 

South Africa’s winelands provide more than award-winning grapes.

A taste of South Africa

And finally, I can’t miss recommending South Africa! I’m especially eager to tuck into the culinary scene in and around Cape Town.  Wolfgat, recently voted #1 in the World’s Restaurant Awards, and beautiful wine regions like Stellenbosch and Hemel-en-Aarde are just a road trip from the city. As a special carrot to kick start a journey, we’re offering $1,000* off per couple on our most popular trip the Southern Explorer. So, you have no excuses!
 

And a few more places I can’t wait to visit…

Old world charm across the Atlantic

I called London home for several years and am excited to return for a friend’s wedding. Since it will be my son’s first time, I’m excited to revisit iconic attractions and new places through an Evans and Evans tour. While on that side of the Atlantic, exploring the Emerald Island through Intimate Ireland, a Brendan Vacations private chauffeur driven journey is tempting.  Staying at Ashford Castle will be an adventure my son will love.
 

My secret gift splurge

Egypt is steadily gaining attention as a safer destination and an amazing way to explore ancient civilization.  This time I’d like to see it on Uniworld’s Splendors of Egypt and The Nile and then journey further into the region with our Secrets of Jordan. While you may be in awe of Petra and the Bronze Age settlements in Jerash, I’m most eager to see local women’s association, Iraq Al Amir, and purchase their handcrafted gifts for my friends and family.  

 

Pura Vida family time

I’m intrigued by Costa Rica and want to take my son gliding along the canals of Tortuguero under the watchful eyes of colorful toucans and trek the Pura Vida playground along the slopes of the Arenal Volcano. I suspect Trafalgar’s Monkeys, Jungles and Volcanoes will help bring out the child in all of us.   
 

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