Africa has a lot to offer the rest of the world by way of tourism and these can be shared through unique storytelling. And South Africa’s Tourism Minister, Lindiwe Sisulu opines that this can be done through the unique opportunities that the industry offers.
Speaking at the official opening of the 2022 Africa’s Travel Indaba in Durban yesterday, May 4, the Minister said telling the African story as a continent, is embarking on the journey of changing the narrative about Africa.
“We invite the world to join and journey with us as we, together, tell the story of Africa. And importantly, we ourselves rediscover who we are, a proud invincible people who survived the brutality of colonialism,” she urged.
Ms. Sisulu added that at the heart of Africa’s Travel Indaba is a quest to promote and shed light on the offerings of the continent while sharing the stories behind them. “And this is the essence of Africa’s Travel Indaba, it is a proudly Pan-African show. As a continent, we are a unique blend of culture, heritage, nature-based, rural and urban experiences that make Africa a rich and varied, all-year destination, with a unique history of courage, resilience and historic sites that tell of our uniqueness.
It tells of a beauty that can’t be equated. The beauty of Table Mountain and the horror of Robbin Island. The beauty of the sand dunes of Namibia, the breath-taking cascades of the Victoria Falls (which should by now have been renamed). The splendour of the river Songwe forming the border between Malawi and Tanzania and pouring into the extraordinary Lake Malawi. The magnificence of Kenya from the Lamu Archipelago to the breathtaking Rift Valley Lakes and savannahs rich with wildlife.”
“But we are also 54 unique countries within the continent and there’s beauty in the appreciation of the unique attributes of each country. This is the beauty of Africa’s Travel Indaba. By telling our own stories, we ensure that the world understands the beauty of our continent beyond any pre-conceived stereotype they may have of Africa, she stressed.”
18 African countries are participating at this year’s event with 625 buyers and 634 exhibitors from across the world. It is expected that 22000 scheduled meetings would have taken place by the end of the event on May 5.
Minister Lindiwe believes that, “despite the effects of the COVID-19, every year going forward, we must enhance Africa’s Travel Indaba to continue to drive growth in tourism numbers by bringing together a range of our best and most unique stories and products from across our continent, and connecting them with buyers from across the world.” Africa’s Travel Indaba 2022 is being held on the theme, “Africa’s Stories, Your Success.”
Click here to view album from the show
By: Samuel Obeng Appah