African alternatives to global getaways
Africa is rich in affordable, once-in-a-lifetime getaways that attract tourists from all over the world. Why not take advantage of some of the most beautiful holiday destinations on the continent, and choose a local alternative to a foreign favourite?
Fancy a hiatus in the Greek isles?
Head for: Watamu, Kenya
Watamu — a small, beachside town in Kenya — is an ideal substitute for a Hellenic holiday, as it boasts magnificent white-sand beaches, as well as three flatwater bays that recall the waveless calm of the Aegean. Watamu is one of those destinations that looks too perfect to possibly be real, and has incredible coral gardens, birdlife, and a population of turtles. Paradise on earth!
Dreaming of the French Riviera?
Head for: Greenpoint, Cape Town
Okay, so Greenpoint isn’t exactly comparable to this famed Mediterranean location. But if you’re longing for easy access to sun-baked promenades, excellent restaurants, the smell of sea brine in the air, and a bustling, sophisticated atmosphere, then this is the perfect place to set up camp for a week or so. Go when the weather is good, but be sure to avoid the onslaught of tourists that descend on Cape Town late in December and early January.
Always wanted to go skiing?
Head for: Tiffindell Ski Resort in Lesotho
There’s no use pretending that Tiffindell, a ski resort in mountainous Lesotho, is going to provide you with a world-class skiing experience, because it isn’t. But if you’ve always wanted to learn how to ski or snowboard, then this is an ideal — and comparatively affordable — place to escape for a weekend with friends. Take a road-trip and drink mulled wine in this strangely snowy winterland the next time you find yourself dreaming of the Alps.
Longing for a trip to the Grand Canyon?
Head for: Valley of the Moon, Angola
Miradouro da Lua, or the Valley of the Moon, is an incredible natural landmark not unlike the Grand Canyon. It is an eerily beautiful, lunar landscape on the coast of Angola that looks like something out of a science fiction movie. The combination of red sand, sparse vegetation, and snow-peaked mountains in the distance, make this a weird and wonderful destination.