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article imageSafari tourism rises in popularity across Africa

By Tim Sandle     May 30, 2014 in Travel
A new report highlights an increase in safari tourism to Africa. The increase is not only coming from traditional regions, like the U.S. and Europe, but also from "emerging markets." This increase is important for the pan-African economy.
According to a report released by Euromonitor International "going on safari" is becoming an increasingly popular pursuit. The report reveals that tourism travel in Africa is increasing, with a higher number of tourists coming from the so-called BRIC countries (Brazil, Russia, India and China), as well as from the Middle East. These are all countries that are each deemed to be at a similar stage of newly advanced economic development.
Although these emerging countries account for a growing number, of the 50 million tourists to Africa each year, France is the number one source, followed by the U.K. and the U.S. Interestingly there is a split in terms of which travelers visit which African counties. According to Africa Renewal Online, French tourists like to go to Morocco, Tunisia, Mauritius, Senegal and Madagascar. Tourists from the U.K. mostly go to Egypt, South Africa, Mauritius and Gambia, while those from the U.S. prefer South Africa, Tanzania, Ghana, Rwanda, Ethiopia and Zimbabwe.
It has been suggested that instead of Namibia killing old rhinos  they could try ecotourism. It woul...
It has been suggested that instead of Namibia killing old rhinos, they could try ecotourism. It would be a better way to fund conservation efforts.
Paul Williams
The increased safari-led tourism is also helping parts of Africa to develop and some of this is being channeled back into developing the safari experience for tourists. Strong economic growth, especially in East Africa, is helping to grow business tourism throughout the region, while rising incomes and urbanization are driving growth in domestic, inter-Africa travel.
The latest trend shows a demand for African hotels and travel retailers to offer more multi-generational holiday options to this growing consumer segment looking to see Africa’s Big Five (elephant, rhino, cheetah, lion and zebra). Specialist companies like Singita Safaris have benefited from the growing popularity.
Peak over the brush and just imagine you re on safari in Africa while you photo these amazing Africa...
Peak over the brush and just imagine you're on safari in Africa while you photo these amazing African elephants that are soon to head to California at Bob Barker's request to an elephant sanctuary.
The information site About Africa provides some interesting facts about the five top animals. These are:
a) The African elephant is the largest land mammal on earth. Elephants live in woodlands, forests, deserts and savanna, spread across 37 countries in sub-Saharan Africa. Elephants can be over 14 feet tall and 30 feet wide. They drink 30-50 gallons of water every day and are vegetarians.
b) There are two species of rhino in Africa, the Black rhino (Diceros bicornis) and the White rhino (Ceratotherium simum). Of these, the white rhino is more numerous. Rhinos are large mammals, an adult white rhino can weigh in at 6,000 pounds.
c) Cheetahs are rare and beautiful cats. They are the fastest animals on earth and their preference for wide open spaces. Cheetahs are not easy to spot on safari since only around 12,000 remain in the wild.
d) With lions, you are more likely to see one snoozing than in active pursuit of dinner since they tend to rest for about 20 hours a day. Lions are social and live in prides (unlike other cats) so they are easier to spot than a cheetah or leopard.
e) Zebra are fairly common throughout East and Southern Africa although mostly confined to national parks and reserves. Zebra are grazers and can gather in huge migratory herds.
If a tourist is lucky, then they will spot each of these animals on most safaris.
Safari refers to trips to observe and photograph wildlife, or hiking and sight-seeing. Most safaris take place in the African continent. It derives from the Swahili word for "long journey".
Giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis) makes full use of the tall tree canopy at the Sao Paulo Zoo.
Giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis) makes full use of the tall tree canopy at the Sao Paulo Zoo.
The most popular destinations for safaris include countries such as Tanzania, Kenya, Botswana, Zambia, Namibia, Uganda, South Africa, Democratic Republic of the Congo and Zimbabwe.
Safaris have developed a long way from the traditional image of the 'big game hunt' and have steadily moved towards a type of Safaris are a form of 'ecotourism'. Here tourists can not only enjoy and experience wild animals and rich geographic landscapes; they can, at the same time, become educated on the ecosystems and animal kingdoms of indigenous regions in Africa.
The level of development and promotion of safaris across the continent has been spearheaded by the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD). This organization aims to provide an overarching vision and policy framework for accelerating economic co-operation and integration among African countries. This includes expanding tourism, of which safaris play a key part.
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