An Adventure through Eastern & Southern Africa
I have some exciting news. In October 2016, BC and I are travelling to Africa for a three month adventure. It feels like we’ve been planning and talking about this for so long, and now, we’re finally on the count down to travelling around a country we’ve always wanted to see.
This trip has been a long time coming. We initially talked about getting married in South Africa and while we eventually realised that Jamaica was the right destination for our wedding, we always said that Africa was on our travel bucket list for the not too far future.
Where do I start?! Africa is one of those places I’ve always seen as mysterious, challenging, exciting, beautiful and utterly unique. My parents lived and met in Zambia and so I grew up watching Out of Africa as a child, hearing stories about the adventures they had there and the amazing people they met along the way. When it came to the decision that BC and I would take a big trip, we wanted to see the world’s most amazing wildlife, discover new cultures and see some of the wonders of the world. We also wanted to push ourselves out of our comfort zones and give us chance to step out of our everyday lives for a bit. We wanted a true adventure and Africa will definitely give us that.
There are many reasons we are taking this trip which I will cover in another post very soon. But as a freelance travel writer, I got to the point where I felt I was taking lots of short trips where time was limited and so I wasn’t able to really get under the skin of a destination. I never did the gap year thing, and the longest trip I’ve ever taken has been six weeks. So my feet were getting very itchy and I was eager to experience a slower pace of travel that would enrich my travel writing career.
I’ve visited some amazing destinations alone and with some fantastic journalists, PRs and bloggers, but I also wanted to start sharing my adventures with my husband who was very lucky to be granted a work sabbatical. And as a freelancer, I am very lucky to have a job that allows me to work and travel at the same time.
I am completely aware that you can still travel when you have a family (and there are some amazing bloggers who are inspiring me to do that) but the type of travel you take will inevitably change once you become a parent. So the time seemed right for a no holds barred adventure.
Which countries are you travelling to?
If all goes to plan, we will be travelling through Kenya, Zambia, Tanzania (and Zanzibar), South Africa and possibly Malawi – not necessarily in that order. So watch this space for all the updates. We fly to Nairobi in October and leave Johannesburg in January 2017.
What will you be doing?
During our trip, we hope to go on lots of safari tours and explore the amazing wildlife and conservation going on in many parts of Africa. We will explore cities, we will explore the coast and hopefully have many impromptu adventures. As always, I will be travelling with my tastebuds, and I can’t wait to take a road trip we have planned in the Western Cape of South Africa to explore the winelands and top restaurants. I have just booked a table at The Restaurant of the Jordan Wine Estate in Stellenbosch which I am very excited about – it’s been voted the third best restaurant in South Africa. We will be in Cape Town for my birthday, Christmas and New Year and BC wants to go cage diving with sharks. I’m still trying to assure him I won’t be joining him…
Will you be writing as you travel?
Yes, I’m going to be writing for various travel publications as I travel through Africa. I will also be blogging about our adventures along the way. As always, you can follow my adventures on twitter, Facebook and instagram too.
How are you planning your trip?
I have already received a lot of amazing help from PRs, tour companies and tour group owners who are sharing their tips and knowledge on Africa tours and destinations. I have also been doing lots of independent reading in the essential Lonely Planet Guides. In the online world, I have found some fantastic tips from blogs and websites including HarriTravels, Helen in Wonderlust and Travel Independent. If you have any other recommended blogs I should follow for Eastern and Southern Africa inspiration, please do let me know.
Can I commission you to write something?
Absolutely. I’m really keen to hear from editors and publications who are looking for website content, blog or print features. If you want to get in touch, please email me on Lucy_McGuire@hotmail.co.uk.
Have you travelled through Eastern and Southern Africa? Do you have any tips for me? I would love to hear your comments and thoughts.