is Africa safe?

Aug 20th, 2001, 08:43 AM
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is Africa safe?

I have always wanted to go to Africa. Everone I mention this to believes this would be very unsafe. So tell me all you world travlers how safe or unsafe is it?
*what about the people
*what about aids
*what about terrorists
*what about disease and the water and food etc...
Oh yeh and how expensive is it and which country is the easiest for American tourists?
Aug 20th, 2001, 10:15 AM
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ok !!! so you want to go to africa and youre not confortable on what people say to you !
I felt the same before my first time in africa, and after visiting that wonderful land...i was forced to change opinion.
If you want to make a debut in africa, I strongly reccomend you the only 100% safe countrie, named...SO TOM AND PRINCIPE.
Its a tiny island, named as miniature africa. It is in equator line, in the guinea gulf, and its the last heaven on earth. For you to have an idea, 90% of its territory is tropical jungle and cocoa plantations. The political situation is very stable democracy, that had election recently without problems. The radio station Voice of America has some broadcasting facilities there ( so...if its safe for them, its safe for you ). What is a terrorist ?? The food is very good ( speacilly the fish ) I went there and I didnt have a single food problem neither my wife ( and boy...shes sensible !!!)...Public health, may be a small problem, about aids, you know that you only have problems if you act without caution, but you must take anti-malaric and yellow fever imunization is required.
Costs- well the cost of living there is very cheap for an european, but its expensive for an african.
This small nation is in fact free from tourist, and when I went there, i only saw 10 whites, and one was my wife. They have two great hotels ( Miramar and Clube Santana ) with swimming pools.People is extraordinary, very very friendly and helpfull ( ...islanders...), the fruit is extraordinary as well as the flowers, and there you wont find for sure, that mass turism that spoiled so many places.

How to get there. Air Portugal ( lisbon - so tome aprox 8 hours flight )

if you need more tips post here, but...try to contact Voice of America radio station, they may help you on public health issues ( they may have a private hospital)
Aug 20th, 2001, 10:23 AM
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( cont ) check the lonely planet ( opinion !
Aug 20th, 2001, 11:27 AM
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Wendy, my husband and I are leaving for our first trip to Africa in March though we have not travelled to Africa we have travelled extensively to Europe, S. America and South Pacific , what follows is my opinion:

My biggest concerns are the risks that are inherant in a developing nation, health care and transportation.

I intend to be fully up to scratch on all my vaccinations, including Hep.A, Tetinus (sp?) etc. Plus malaria medication as needed, on top of mosquito protection and current prescriptions plus what ever else is required for my particular destination.
Drink Bottled water, which I even do in Europe, though their water is extremely safe, I drink bottled water because MY body is not used to local water, (I can get a bladder infections even in New Jersey).

I plan to travel with a reputable/experienced safari company, which tends to give one a larger "comfort zone" in terms of local customs, taboos, scams, health, transpo and safety concerns.

Research your destination, Africa is a huge continent with many different countries and politics going on your risk factor can increase or decrease depending upon which country you are planning on travelling to.

Use common sense, passports in a money pouch, carry copies of important documents, prescriptions etc (Which you should do, even if going on holiday in London , Sydney , NYC or L.A ).

Finally, regarding violence, just to put it into some perspective, America is (and don't get me wrong, I love America and I am proud to be an American) but we are considered a very dangerous country by many people. Maybe because I live in Los Angeles, I do believe that there are people from other countries who are so concerned with violence that they question planning a vacation to California.

Travelling to exotic locals or even tame ones requires a varying degree of risk no matter what, you must decide if the risk is worth the dream and follow your heart.

I am fairly confident that if you use common sense and keep your wits about you, you should be able to enjoy a very high level of safety.

BTW, we booked a 9 day Safari to Kenya for $1,775.00 PP thats INCLUDING air from Atlanta.

Good Luck whatever you decide.
Aug 21st, 2001, 05:38 AM
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prices for so tom and principe are untill 31 st October (euros) 1.675,96 pp ( includes flights-2 way trip from lisbon, hotel and breakfast )aprx 1532 usd
Aug 21st, 2001, 09:25 AM
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We're talking here about Africa in general. We have been to Tunisia, Egypt, Senegal and Kenya - all African countries but in no way comparable. I must say we never felt unsafe. Of course we don't go out alone at night in Mombasa or Nairobi.
People: most of the African people are very kind and friendly but they are also very poor, especially in Senegal and Kenya and in their eyes all the tourist are extremely rich. The locals will try in one or another way to get something from you (ex. I work in your hotel and I want to be your guide for a citytour - DON'T !). In Northern Africa (Egypt, Tunisia) the shopowners can be very persistant to try to sell you something and this can sometimes become very annoying. Be prepared to it.
Aids: this is of course an immense problem in this part of the world. No intimate contact, be careful with blood, etc. You know that for yourself. We always carry our own syringes, just in case we might land in a hospital for urgent surgery or so.
Terrorists: there will for sure be terrorist, but they are all over the world.
Water/food: take the necessary precautions: no uncooked food, no unbottled water, don't eat anything from the stalls on the streets, no icecubes in your drinks, don't swim in the Nile, etc.
Expenses: depends from what you want. A beach holiday in Tunisia will definitely be much cheaper than a safari in Kenya.
Aug 21st, 2001, 10:09 AM
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I agree with myriam, shes totally correct.
The only reason I posted about so tom and principe is because its a unknown countrie for most tourists, and its a place where you can see africa in a more sane way.
When i got there, i thought that those clich images didnt exist, such as kids walking around naked and smiling to you, old cars, lots and lots of vegetation, the smells, the sounds and all that ancestrality. But there, in fact all that exists.
Aug 22nd, 2001, 05:45 AM
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I was born (of British parents)and raised in Kenya and have now been living in Johannesburg for nearly 20 years. And at the age of 44 I am alive, very healthy and very very happy! I have been to other countries but have never seen anything to attract me to live anywhere else!
Aug 23rd, 2001, 04:17 AM
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What would you say, if I asked the same stupid question about "America" meanig South and North. Have a look at the map, Africa is enormous......
Aug 25th, 2001, 04:42 PM
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Just make sure you don't need a blood transfusion while you're there.
Aug 29th, 2001, 10:04 AM
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blood transfusion !!! I think the "thing" that wrote the previous post needs a brain transfusion ( or a brain implant )
Sep 2nd, 2001, 04:40 PM
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You really think the question of blood transfusions on a continent where AIDS is on a rampage is nothing to worry about? Good luck!

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