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Travel Etiquette Behaviors

Travel Etiquette Behaviors

Travel etiquette behaviors, gestures and customs can differ drastically from country to country. Brush up on our travel etiquette before setting off on your Holiday!

Thumbs up

It’s surprising how such a small thing can be mean so many different things. In the UK, ‘thumbs up’ may be a positive sign, but in Sardinia and Greece it means ‘screw you’. In some Middle Eastern countries, it translates as a foul insult, literally ‘up yours’, if you get
what we mean…

In Indonesia on the other hand, the thumb is often used for pointing – using fingers is often considered to be rude.

A-Okay

Similarly confusing is the good old ‘a-okay’ gesture, where your thumb connects with your index finger to form an ‘O’ shape. In parts of Australia this simply means ‘okay’, but in Brazil and Germany it is used as an insult. In Japan the same motion represents coins, in Russia it means zero, and in France it is an expression of worthlessness.

Headshake

Contrary to the UK, Bulgarians, and Iranians shake their heads for ‘yes’ and nod for ‘no’. In Greece, Lebanon and Turkey, a slight downward nod of the head means ‘yes’ whereas tilting it up means ‘no’. In India, a head waggle can mean a range of things, such as ‘I am considering what you said’.

Putting your feet up

It is best not to point the soles of your feet in anyone’s direction in Muslim countries, and in Thailand, pointing your feet towards a Buddha is a sign of disrespect. On a similar note, avoid stepping over anybody’s legs whilst in Nepal.

Personal space

In the UK, we tend to value our privacy and personal space. In contrast, other cultures are much less inhibited. In the Mediterranean, Latin America and some parts of the Middle East, people will be much more liable to stand closer and make more expressive physical contact.

Tick tock

Turning up a few minutes late for social arrangements is usually considered okay in the UK, but we aren’t as laid back as Argentina, where arriving anywhere between one and three hours late is fine. Bad time keeping is less tolerated in Germany.

Hand in hand

Men holding hands or walking arm in arm in Muslim countries, India and Africa is perfectly acceptable as a friendly gesture, whereas in Europe it suggests a more intimate relationship.

Lefty or righty

In India and parts of Africa, the left hand is considered to be unclean, so stick to eating, greeting people and gesturing with your right hand if possible.

Short shorts

In India, only boys under 11 or 12 years old wear shorts, so sometimes the locals will find it hilarious to see older men in shorts.

Africa Safari Adventure Seasons

Africa Safari Adventure Seasons

Tarangire NP May 2014 41 Africa Safari Adventure Seasons
Safaris are available year-round, but seasonal climate changes and other factors can affect game viewing and personal comfort. Today we’ll cover what you need to consider in choosing your ideal time to travel in the East Africa Safari destinations.

The best time for game-viewing is typically during the dry season, which varies from country to country as detailed below. During this season, temperatures are mild, animal populations are concentrated at rivers, pools and other water sources, and there is less vegetation to obstruct your view. However, the rainy season can have special draws as well, such as an influx of migrating birds.

 
Tanzania Safari Adventure Seasons 

 

tanzania mt kilimanjaro Africa Safari Adventure Seasons

Tanzania has two wet seasons each year, short rains that come intermittently in November and December, and long rains that fall roughly from February to May. Generally, the dryer months of June to October are best for wildlife viewing.  Tanzania from early June is warm, sunny days and comfortable nights and ideal game viewing not only in the world-famous Serengeti National Park but throughout the country.

During rainy periods in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, which boasts a terrific density of wildlife, animals congregate on the short-grass plains to have their young. At nearby Lake Manyara National Park, bird populations peak during the rainy seasons. You’ll find large numbers of flamingos, storks, herons, cormorants, pelicans and geese, among others.

Kenya Safari Adventure Seasons

kenya stunning locations 2015 11 15 07 11 54 UTC Africa Safari Adventure Seasons

 

Kenya’s best game-viewing periods are during the dry winter months of May through August and the warmer spring months of September and October.

Tanzania and Kenya share one of nature’s most amazing spectacles, the annual movement of nearly 2 million wildebeest and zebras and other animals across open savannahs in both countries, known as the great Migration .

Seasonal rains and droughts drive the migration, so the timing varies a little every year but there is a general pattern, described below. If you schedule your visit correctly, you’ll be treated to ideal weather and extraordinary wildlife viewing.

Wildebeests and zebras typically spend December to April nursing newborn calves in Tanzania. The slow-moving calves lure lions, cheetahs and hyenas, and the resulting mix of predator and prey offers prime viewing opportunities in Serengeti National Park and the Ngorongoro Crater.

When the rains end, usually in May, the animals head north in search of food. This is the start of the Great Migration, a steady stream of animals in columns that stretch for miles, heading toward the western and northern Serengeti. June and July are the best months for witnessing the migration in Tanzania.

By August or September, the herds begin to cross into Kenya to graze amid the lush greenery of the Masai Mara National Reserve. Some naturalists claim that the Masai Mara contains the largest concentration of predators along the migratory route. The animals will stay here until October or November. Most safaris visit the area before fall brings another rainy season to the plains and the herds turn south, back to Tanzania.
For more information on the Great Migration, and to book a safari  see https://www.natureboundafrica.com

Uganda Safari Adventure Seasons

Murchison falls boat ride Africa Safari Adventure Seasons

 

Most travelers to Uganda want to trek through the jungles of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park to spend time with mountain gorillas. The best times for this are during the dry months of June through early September and late December through February. The rainy seasons are from mid-September to November and from March to May, and gorilla tracking during these times is more difficult. Daytime temperatures in most parts of the country are consistently warm all year, but it can get much cooler in the higher altitudes of Uganda’s mountains, especially at night.

Uganda’s traditional game-viewing preserves, like Queen Elizabeth National Park and Kibale National Park, also are best visited during the dry months noted above. Routes through the parks can become impassable during the rains.

Rwanda Safari Adventure Seasons

gombe steam national park e1428080662511 Africa Safari Adventure Seasons

Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda  is another key destination for gorilla encounters. Like Uganda, the best periods to track the primates are June through early September and late December through January, the region’s two dry seasons. The tiny country’s high altitude keeps temperatures relatively low here as well.

http://feeds.feedburner.com/natureboundafrica

Solo travel made safe

Solo travel made safe

image Solo travel made safe

Independent travel is a liberating experience – but it can be daunting, too. Observing a few common-sense rules of the road can keep you safe on your journey

Is 2015 the year you want to head out on the open road alone? Even if you’re looking forward to the total freedom of travelling solo, there are sure to be some doubts as you face what could be a daunting prospect. Employ a spot of Fixology, though, and you can enjoy the freedom and flexibility of travelling solo, safely.

Consider your destination

There are some geopolitical hotspots, such as various destinations in the Middle East, that are currently best avoided. Be aware of any issues by checking the Foreign Office website. Beyond this, there are some countries that are easier to travel around alone; most European destinations present few issues, for example. Longer haul, consider places that travellers tend to congregate, such as Thailand, where infrastructure is good and you might meet others in the same situation. Australia and New Zealand are even easier, with no language barrier and excellent infrastructure.

Join a group

One halfway house for nervous first-timers is to join a guided group trip for “solo” travellers. Yes, you do lose a bit of your independence, but you gain the necessary backup to build confidence for your next truly solo trip. It need not be the old cliched Club 18-30 holiday (which are actually often a lot of fun for those in that age group), with a wide choice of operators today targeting different ages and tastes.

Keep your belongings safe

Minimise the potential stress of losing your passport or cash hoard and having to sort it out alone by keeping your luggage and key belongings safe. Buy a subtle travel pouch or belt to keep things tucked away out of sight and plan to carry a minimum of cash by packing bank cards and credit cards instead – but keep them separate so they can’t be lost all at once. Use a tagging service such as idtagit to ensure that if you do lose something, anyone who finds it will know how to return it.

Take care

When you are out on the road alone, use traveller common sense. Blend in by wearing what the locals do: avoid wearing your favourite sports top or any clothing that may offend local customs, such as sleeveless tops or short skirts. Be wary and remember that you don’t have the benefit of safety in numbers, so keep your belongings close and avoid attracting attention, especially at potential flashpoints like bars, clubs and transport hubs.

Keep in touch

Checking in with others is a great way to stay safe when travelling solo. Let your social media friends know how often you will be updating your status so they can keep an eye on you. It’s safer to bore them with daily photos of the Taj Mahal than disappear off the radar. Use social media, email, texts, calls and any other communications you can to let people you trust know where you will be and when, so they can watch out for you and alert someone if they are concerned.

Travelling Alone: The pros & Cons

 
 

Travelling Alone: The pros & Cons

Travelling Alone Travelling Alone: The pros & Cons

For some, the idea of setting off with nothing but a backpack for company is utterly terrifying. For others, it is the best and only way to travel.

We take a look at some of the pros and cons of travelling solo.

Pros

  • Self indulgence
    The major bonus of travelling on your own is having the freedom to do whatever you want, whenever you want to do it. With nobody else around, you can plan your itinerary to suit your own particular travelling style.
  • Flexibility
    Travelling alone allows you to adapt and change your plans at short notice without debate or compromise.
  • New friends
    Solo travellers tend to be more approachable than groups. You’ll be able to mingle with other backpackers, and make lots of new friends en route.
  • No arguments
    No matter how much you like your friends, spending 24 hours a day with one person can become tiresome. If you do plan on travelling with someone, it’s perhaps best to test the waters first with a short trip, so you can familiarise yourself with their habits and moodswings.
  • Less hassle
    Groups of travellers will always attract more attention than a lone traveller, particularly from locals touting for business.
  • Learning about yourself
    When travelling alone, you’ll have more time to really reflect and learn about yourself.

Cons

  • Loneliness
    No matter how independent you are, solo travellers will always suffer the occasional bout of loneliness. You can however combat this by heading to traveller spots to meet other single explorers.
  • Security
    Travelling in a pair or a group can feel much safer than being alone. You can look out for each other and watch over each other’s belongings. If you are travelling solo, there are some precautions you can take, for example, don’t arrive at your destination during the night.
  • Expensive
    Travelling alone tends to be more expensive. Hostels typically charge by the room, not by the number of people staying in them. People travelling in groups can split the cost of food and other expenses.
  • Boring pictures
    If you’re travelling alone, you’ll probably end up with lots of ‘MySpace’ style pictures, because you’ll have no one to snap your pic at all the wonderful places you visit.
  • No safety net
    If you travel alone, you’ll be completely responsible for your own actions. There will be nobody there to look after you, or to tell you when you’re too drunk, or when you’ve spent too much money.

How to cope with jetlag

How to cope with jetlag

jet lag How to cope with jetlag

Jetlag can ruin the start of your adventure in a new country. There’s no cure for it but there are ways of dealing with it.

You touch down on the next leg of your Holiday Safari Adventure Experience in Africa, but the quick change of time zones means you’re feeling fatigued, tired, can’t sleep at night and suffering from headaches.
This is known as jetlag and without taking the right precautions, it could really put a downer on the first few days of your trip.
Why do we get jetlag?
Our internal body clock controls when we feel sleepy and when we feel active. It’s controlled by daylight so we get used to a regular rhythm of daylight and darkness. But when you’re travelling the world, and through different time zones, your body clock will be out of sync with local time when you reach your destination.
The bad news is there’s no cure for jetlag. Within two to six days, usually, you’ll start to feel better. But if you’ve travelled a long distance to your next destination, it can take up to 14. But the good news is there are ways to cope with jetlag that lowers the impact.
Adjust your body clock
Before you leave for your next travel destination, try shifting your internal clock. It may be hard when there are a million things to do in such little time, but try getting up and going to bed slightly earlier if you’re flying east, for example, to Australia or getting up and going to bed later if you’re flying west, for example, to America.
If you’re flying in the evening, don’t sleep too much, so you’ll be naturally tired when you arrive. But if your flight arrives in the morning, sleep as much as possible during the flight so you can stay awake through the day. The minute you touch down on the next leg of your travels, get into the local routine immediately. Try to fight through and spend the day outdoors. Natural light can also help your body clock adjust.
While there are no medicines available for jetlag, medical research suggests that the hormone melatonin can be useful to people who are travelling across time zones. Speak to your NBA for more information.
Five tips for coping with jetlag
  • Walk around during your flight to exercise 
  • Eat in-flight meals to mirror the time at your destination 
  • Drink plenty of water – at least one glass every hour will keep you regularly hydrated
  • Eat carbohydrates and greens before your flight to help build up your body’s defences 
  • Don’t drink alcohol and coffee before or during your flight – this causes dehydration which contributes to jetlag
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