Nile Gazing It is mid afternoon in Cairo. I am sitting on my balcony at The Four Seasons Residence marveling at the majestic Nile River below and pondering how much human madness this river has seen for thousands of years. I have always been fascinated by history and spent a particular part of my youth fixated on ancient Egyptian history. The flight from NYC to Cairo is 12 hours. So
What to do in Morocco Chefchaouen was established in 1471 by Moorish and Jewish refugees who fled the Reconquista of Spain. The city served as a sanctuary again, when Hitler drove Jews from their homes in the 1930s. Until 1948, which marked the creation of Israel, many Jewish families lived in Chefchaouen happily among their neighbors: Muslim and native Berber families. Chefchaouen isn’t a tourist town, per se, as it’s
Morocco Travel Tips The walled city of Essaouira dates back to the ancient Phoenicians (1500 BC – 300 BC). It later became a Portuguese fortress in 1506. In 1765, the city became known as Mogador, turning into a commercial port at the request of Sultan Mohammed Ben Abdallah. For many years, Mogador was the only port in Morocco open to foreign trade. The Sultan had the Medina designed by French
Perched beneath the scenic Atlas Mountains and wrapped in exotic influences from West African nomads and Europeans, Marrakech (a.k.a. Marrakesh) has always been the cultural hub of Morocco. It was once a place of sultans and princesses, slave-traders, colonialists, and merchants busily trading goods, after crossing the Sahara Desert in caravans. Called “The Red City”, Marrakech is often described as the “soul” or “beating heart” of Morocco. Inhabited by Berber
Until relatively recently, the area known as Sharm El Sheikh was nothing more than a few miles of beautiful beach and tents. Today, it’s a thriving international resort town overflowing with glittering luxury. Once you arrive in Cairo, Egypt, Sharm El Sheikh is just a 45-minute flight to the “City of Peace”, situated on the southern tip of the Sinai peninsula, with the Red Sea on one side and Mount
Lions, cheetahs and hippos, oh my! Africa is a vast continent, encompassing a diverse array of culture, nature, and history. When you travel to Africa you can visit the great pyramids and hieroglyphs of Egypt, the mysterious markets of Marrakech, or hit the beaches of Cape Town.
Whether you are hoping for a peek at a mummy, a chance to hike Mount Kilimanjaro, or want to see the modern day villages of Ghana, Africa is an incredible place to visit. Take in the breathtaking dunes of the endless Sahara desert from the back of a camel or stop by Morocco for another great African travel destination that will dazzle you with its spectacle of colors and patterns.
Don’t forget the animals! Maybe you’ll spot an elephant or a cheetah on a safari across the Serengeti when you travel to Africa. Wildlife lovers will adore the chance to see these majestic creatures outside of the confines of a zoo.
Morocco is a riot of color and life. From the cultural hub in Marrakech to the buildings and mosques of Casablanca, you’ll get to explore the markets of Jemaa, the architecture of Ben Youssef Medersa, and all the world’s shades of blue in Chefchaouen.
While Egypt is in Africa, it’s also part of the Middle East and links Northeast Africa to Israel and Jordan. Dating back to the times of the Pharaohs, visit the pyramids of Giza and the Great Sphinx, as well as Luxor’s Karnak Temple and Valley of the King’s Tombs. You may also want to stop in Cairo for some effluent shopping and relax along the Red Sea on the Sinai Peninsula.
Largely French influenced, the Seychelles are the most beautiful islands you can visit. The inner islands of Mahé, Praslin, and Victoria make up the main cultural and economic hub of the nation and contain the most stunning beaches along with stunning examples of colonial era French and British architecture. Clap along to the traditional moutya dance before strolling through La Digue’s forests of delicate orchids, tumbling vanilla vines, and Indian almond and takamaka trees.
When you travel to Africa, make sure you shop! The bustling marketplaces of Marrakech and Chefchaouen are chock full of local handicrafts. Africa is full of amazing artisans, so pick up a hand woven basket or wooden carving as a memento of your travels. Even if you aren’t in the market for souvenirs, the colors and textures of the marketplace make it an incredible place to window shop.
African villages and cities are a great place to wander and soak up local culture, but for a more in-depth understanding of the culture, consider hiring a guide for an afternoon when as you travel through Africa. Hiring a guide can give you a much richer understanding of African history and customs, and it’s a great way to find the best restaurants and shops that other tourists might miss. If you are planning on taking a safari when you travel to Africa, you will definitely need a guide to help you find, and safely view, incredible African animals.
When you are deciding what to pack for Africa, bring light-weight, airy fabrics to keep you cool as you sightsee. Pack a cool pair of shades to keep the sun out of your eyes while you are scanning the Serengeti for a lion, and a stylish wide brimmed hat to keep the sun off your face. Be sure to bring a large, thin silk scarf that you can drape over your shoulders when you are touring mosques and other religious sites.
When you are figuring out what to pack for Africa, bring along some glamorous accessories like strappy gold sandals and sparkly chandelier earrings to dress up your travel wardrobe and embrace the opulence of Egyptian fashion and culture. Top it off with a rich, spicy perfume that will make you smell like Cleopatra as you take your own tour of the Nile.