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Article 599: April 2009: Kenya is Now Open For Business...
African Travel News
While the political crisis and civil unrest have definitely ended, with peace and calm restored across the country, the leadership recognised that the new government has to focus on some important tasks to re-establish Kenya in its former position as one of the continent’s most stable and economically successful
nations. President Kibaki called for the speedy resettlement of the internally displaced Kenyans who are living as refugees and indicated that this will be a priority for the government. The new Prime Minister, Raila Odinga, pledged to lead a campaign to ensure that violence is ended and particularly mentioned the activities of the Mungiki sect which has been involved in demonstrations and clashes with police in the past week, urging that violent acts should stop immediately so that ordinary Kenyans could go about their daily lives in peace.

Former UN Secretary General, Kofi Annan, who had played such an important role in bringing both sides of the political divide together to resolve the crisis, was present to witness the swearing-in ceremony and expressed his pleasure that a peaceful settlement had been achieved, urging Kenyan political leaders to continue working together to achieve the implementation of all aspects of the National Accord and Reconciliation Act which is the basis of the power-sharing arrangement and Grand Coalition. Uganda's President Museveni of Uganda and other East African leaders were also in attendance together with international diplomats.

US Ambassador Michael Ranneberger congratulated the new government and commented, “This was very positive for Kenyans and the agenda that has been laid out is very challenging. The signs are good and the United States will be present to give its assistance. More About Kenya >

Article 598: Snow on Kilimanjaro to disappear by 2020!
African Travel News
Kilimanjaro’s glaciers are melting so quickly that they will be gone by 2020, claim US researchers. Douglas Hardy of the University of Massachusetts said global warming may not be the culprit. “It’s difficult to ascribe the decrease solely to humans,” he said. “Further research is needed to determine to what extent global warming or natural climate variability are
responsible”. The summit of the ice fields has apparently lowered by at least 17m since 1962, an average loss of about half a metre each year. Meanwhile, scientists report a spectacular environmental turn-around in West Africa: the southern Sahara desert is in retreat, making farming viable again in what were some of Africa’s most arid areas.

Families in Burkina Faso who fled advancing desertification twenty years ago are returning home. Satellite images confirm that dunes are giving way to vegetation across the Sahel region, from Mauritania to Eritrea. There is confusion over the reason: possibly just increased rainfall after great droughts in the early 1970s and ’80s, in conjunction with better farming methods. Well, with all this knowledge, this might be your last chance to climb to the... Learn More >
Article 597: Safaris Rated "Best Holiday" for Children!
African Travel News
Yes, 7 out of 10 teenager aksed by AfriChoice! Consumer Research Department said they have liked safaris more than other non-safari destinations they have been. Unbiased and randomly taken results further indicate that a safari holiday helps nurture in them a deep love and appreciation of nature and its wonders and mysteries. The real keys to planning a
safari for kids lie in the selection of bases, guides and activities that are suitable. Kids often change character in the bush. Without exception we've found that youngsters whose attention span is normally no greater than that of a flea suddenly become totally engrossed in the new and foreign safari experience. They can turn into "knowledge sponges" and sometimes develop amazing memory recall. Like being introduced to a new plant on day 1 and then being able to identify it botanically and list it's tribal uses verbatim on next sighting in completely new terrain several days later.... (to the parents the second sighting was just another amazing vegetable!).

If your children love movies like 'The Lion King' or 'Madagascar', a well-planned family safari is sure to be a great hit. Although many safari camps don’t allow children under a certain age, others positively welcome them and lay on special features, such as baby-sitting, kid’s food and guides for family groups. Some even offer children’s activities like bush treasure hunts, bead-making and bedtime safaris from traditional African storytellers. If you are worried about malaria choose a malaria-free game reserve in South Africa. Another good option is a self-drive safari in Namibia or South Africa. The roads are excellent, you can travel at your own stress-free pace and combine a safari with a few days on the beach.

Most children love animals – preferably those they can touch and hold. That’s one reason why holidaying on farms or visiting zoos and theme parks with pet corners are such excellent child-friendly holiday options. Wild animals are that much more exciting and exotic, but obviously untouchable. But family safaris are not only possible, but great fun too – as long as they’re done safely and under the supervision of a reputable operator that caters for children. If you choose your game reserve carefully and select a tour operator which offers a tailor-made family service, it’s perfectly possible to have a great, safe break. Learn More >

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