The South African Tourism stand celebrates Mandela.

Wandering through the exhibitions at Africa's Travel Indaba is like travelling to new and exotic countries.

On one end, there's a mix of local spots that offer up anything from adventure, romance, foodie and nature spots.

And on the other are Majestic African countries that one only sees in post cards or travel magazines.

The variety of tourism offerings will make you want to pack your bags and book your next flight. Exhibitors have upped their ante this year. Some have included virtual reality stands to give a glimpse of exactly what their destination has on offer while others have used the tried and tested method of hospitality and good food to attract those curious travel minds.

Reporter Clinton Moodley walked through the various stands at this year’s Indaba and these were the stands that impressed him.

SOUTH AFRICAN TOURISM

The South African Tourism stand celebrates Mandela. Picture: Supplied.

South African Tourism always seems to shine when it comes to creating concepts that travellers want to see and experience. This year, in line with Nelson Mandela Centenary, they created a wall design featuring the late struggle stalwart.

The campaign will highlight 100 experiences within South Africa that represents Madiba. Guests of the stall were treated to Mandela postcards that had drawings of him during the most iconic moments of his career and the places that shaped his political and personal life.

The stand is open-plan and is easy to navigate among those interested buyers.


ROVOS RAIL

Marcelle du Preez, the barman, was at hand to whip up his signature list of drinks. Picture: Bongani Mbatha.
The treats at Rovos Rail. Picture: Bongani Mbatha.

Rovos Rail, a 5 star train trip to various parts of Africa, including Cape Town, Dar es Salaam and Victoria Falls, has been around for more than 20 years.

Located outside a big, white tent, Rovos Rail brought the elegance and opulence to Indaba. Once you enter, Lee-Anne Gammage, one of the hosts, said that hosted buyers interested in selling Rovos Rail as a tourism offering were given luxury treatment that their train is associated with. Marcelle du Preez, the barman, was at hand to whip up his signature list of drinks, some that feature on the menu on Rovos Rail. Snacks and chocolates were available at every table if anyone felt peckish.


HEALTH DRINKS AT BUYERS LOUNGE

Fancy a free smoothie at the Buyer's lounge? Picture: Clinton Moodley.

The smoothies were refreshing. Picture: Clinton Moodley.

For those buyers who want to rest their feet and fuel up would appreciate the health drinks on offer at the Buyer’s Lounge. Bartender Mpho Matshaba is at hand creating healthy smoothies and juices that will leave you wanting more. Try the strawberry juice, it is a treat!  


TOURISM KWAZULU-NATAL

Lungi Nembula at the Tourism KwaZulu-Natal stand. Picture: Clinton Moodley.

Tourism KwaZulu stand is one of the most sought after stands at Indaba. They have kept to their same open-plan layout, but have included private boardrooms for meetings. Some of the highlights to watch out for is the SMME Happy Hour at 1pm on May 9 and many entertainment offerings throughout the duration.


TAKE A SELFIE AT DURBAN TOURISM

Capturing a selfie at the Durban Tourism stand are Bheki Dlamini, Phumelele Mlambo and Ncamo Khomo. Picture: Bongani Mbatha.

Travellers who love their selfies should definitely find the Durban Tourism stand where many iconic spots including the Durban beachfront, Umhlanga Pier and Moses Mabhida stadium is featured. The displays are so real that if you position the picture in a certain angle it would be as good as you actually visiting the place.


FRIENDLY FACES AT THE KINGDOM OF ESWATINI

The friendly faces at The Kingdom of Eswatini, from left to right: Nombuyiselo Nxumalo, Darron Raw and Phumelele Kunene. Picture: Clinton Moodley.

The Kingdom of Eswatini, previously known as Swaziland, not only showcases their vast tourism offerings but also their friendly locals. Nombuyiselo Nxumalo, Darron Raw and Phumelele Kunene are just some of the friendly faces that are at the stand.