It has been a while since my last update on the travel situation. Now that over half the population in the US is fully vaccinated against the coronavirus, it’s time to check in on the current state of international travel.
If you intend on making plans to travel then you must check each country’s entry requirements even once you are fully vaccinated. Many governments still require that a negative COVID-19 test is presented by those who are double jabbed. Others still impose quarantine upon arrival. Rules and regulations continue to change frequently but here is an update on the latest developments.
Where can US citizens travel right now?
As of 9 August, Canada opened its borders to US citizens who are vaccinated with one of the approved vaccines (Pfizer, Moderna, J&J, or AstraZeneca). Note that passengers are deemed fully vaccinated once 14 days have elapsed from the second shot.
Mexico remains one of the most accessible destinations for US travelers who are not yet vaccinated. Nor is a negative COVID-19 test required when arriving via airplane. Land borders remain closed to all but essential travel.
The Caribbean islands each have their own rules in place. Jamaica accepts unvaccinated travelers providing they produce a negative coronavirus test. Barbados is the same but visitors must also undertake a five-day quarantine in an approved hotel upon arrival. Fully vaccinated travelers may visit St.Lucia without the need to quarantine but unvaccinated arrivals with a negative coronavirus test are required to quarantine for 14 days.
A few weeks ago, I revealed that Kenya is one of the best places in Africa to see the Big 5 on safari. That’s lions, leopards, rhinos, elephants, and buffalos, in case you need a quick refresher. If Kenya’s Maasai Mara National Reserve piqued your interest then this week I’m going to share some further destinations in Kenya where you can extend your Kenyan vacation.
The Kenyan capital is an energetic city that unites traditional and contemporary culture while fusing urban pleasures and a dash of wilderness. The city is home to the Nairobi National Park where you can gain an understanding of the rehabilitation efforts taking place at the Nairobi Animal Orphanage. The open-air exhibition Bomas of Kenya invites you to experience the indigenous customs through art, crafts, and performances. Meanwhile, you will find a spread of museums, wine bars, and international restaurants waiting for you across the city streets.
This huge lake is situated in southwest Kenya and is shared with neighboring Uganda and Tanzania. As only a tiny fraction of the lake is within Kenyan territory it brings exclusivity to your itinerary. You can elect to stay in a plush lakeside hotel in Kisumu where you can arrange boat tours and visit the Kisumu Impala Wildlife Sanctuary. Alternatively, you may want to stay in a beautiful eco-retreat on the island of Rusinga.
If you’re seeking sun, sand, and sea following your safari adventure then look no further than Mombasa on the southeast coast. Known as the blue and white city for its strategically painted buildings, Mombasa is the gateway to some of the loveliest Indian Ocean beaches on the African continent. Head south to Diani Beach for the whitest sand and most appeasing hotels.
South Africa is Africa's 9th largest country according to its landmass. The reasons to visit this vast and culturally diverse nation are seemingly endless, and that's why it makes it on so many people's bucket lists. To encourage you a little more and to further enhance your excitement, here are five reasons you should make it to South Africa at least once in your life.
1. Cape Town. As one of South Africa's three capitals, the Mother City is one that you must explore. Not only is it one of the top holiday destinations in the entire world, but it's full of natural, exotic beauty that you can't find anywhere else. In addition, there's excellent food, plenty of beaches, and, last but not least, Table Mountain.
2. The Garden Route. Take the Garden Route from Mossel Bay to Storms River for some of the most breathtaking coastline views. Visit and view small towns, rugged shores, sandy beaches, and thick forests.
Following on from my advice to where you can see the Big 5 in Africa and ahead of our virtual event on the African Safari, this week the spotlight is on another of the continent’s wildlife hotspots. In addition to being the setting for one of Africa’s most iconic natural landmarks, Victoria Falls, the landlocked country of Zimbabwe is also another haven for observing the native fauna. Here are five places where you can see African wildlife in Zimbabwe.
Hwange National Park
Perhaps the most famous reserve in the country is Hwange National Park. Encompassing over 5,850 square miles (14,600 km²) in western Zimbabwe, this is the largest park in the country and provides a home to over 100 kinds of mammal and over 400 bird species. Hwange is popular as it’s the place that you are most likely to witness the Big 5 in Zimbabwe and it is located close to Victoria Falls so you can easily combine your vacation with a visit. Hwange is one of the best national parks in the whole of Africa for seeing elephants.
Mana Pools National Park
Spanning 2,612 square miles (6,766 km²) and situated in the north of Zimbabwe on the Zambezi River, this reserve is a riverine wonderland of watering holes and floodplains which delight the endemic wildlife. The best way to experience Mana Pools National Park is via canoe which enables you to observe the likes of hippos, buffalo, elephants, crocodiles and aquatic birdlife hydrating and bathing. Away from the water, you may spot zebra, lions and even African painted wolves basking in the shade of the mahogany and acacia trees.
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