Keeping with the spirit of Africa Day, IOL's travel writers have shared their thoughts on what Africa Day means to them. Here is what they had to say:
Mantombi Makhubhele, Travel Editor
For me there is no such thing as a special day to celebrate Africa. I celebrate it everyday in who I am and all the people I interact with around Johannesburg, which id the melting pot of most of Africa. I love my continent so much that I get frustrated when people treat it as if it's one country. Its the diversity of cultures and traditions which make this continent colourfully vibrant and spiritual at the same time. The resilient spirit of the people of Africa is unbelievably admirable. My heart just wants to run wild all across the continent. From Lagos, to Senegal, to Ethiopia to Zambia to Côte d'Ivoire to Djibouti to Sierra Leone. My bucket list is endless. I want to eat the exotic food in Kenya and experience the nightlife of Uganda and to behold the breathtaking Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe.
Clinton Moodley, Travel Writer
There is something about Africa that is special. The warmth of its people, the infusion of culture and its amazing food mesmerises me to travel in its vast lands. Africa to me is home, a place where I can enjoy its beauty and array of different offerings while still celebrating my own uniqueness. While I haven't explored outside South Africa, I am hoping to make time to wander through Africa, telling the stories of everyday people and their lifestyles, the history and culture. First on my bucket list is Kenya. I dream of trekking Mount Kenya, ballooning over the Masai Mara and exploring their tea fields. Did you know that 69 different languages are spoken in Kenya and that the Kenya’s Kalenjin tribe has been dubbed ‘the running tribe’ for its unbelievable ability to spawn world record breaking runners? Well, if that is not reason enough to visit, I am not sure what is. Long Live Africa and its beautiful nation.
Masego Panyane, Travel Writer
If I told you of all the reasons why I am deeply in love with the African Continent, this would be a conversation we’d have till the wee hours of the morning. This continent, the dark continent, the continent that lacks development is my first love. It’s all I have ever known. Even with my increasingly broadening horizons, I still actively choose to live and love the African continent.
As for Africa Day, I don’t single out this day because everyday is Africa Day. I am Africa. It’s in my history, my family, the tight coils of my hair, my language, my sense of rhythm , Africa is in me. While I recognise the importance of commemorating and observing a collective day as a continent that marks our ongoing liberation from foreign domination, I want to rather live the ethos of everyday being Africa Day. If we all live this way, then we will grow in the pride we have of who we are, we will appreciate the sacrifices we’ve had to make to get to where we are, and we will work harder to make this land grow to the levels we know it can get to.