Wanderlust in the time of Covid-19

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By Reabetswe Khutsoane

This article is exclusive to the Online Edition 5 of VARSITY News.

 

The travel and tourism industry is arguably the greatest impacted by the outbreak of Covid-19. Aims to contain and mitigate the spread of the virus include the prohibition of travel both domestically and internationally.

 

Companies in the industry have been knocked financially. Planes have been grounded for weeks and some of the world’s airlines could be facing bankruptcy by the end of May, according to the aviation consultant CAPA. Airbnb CEO, Brian Chesky, has announced that the company will be cutting its staff by 25%.

 

For an industry that contributes just over 10% of global GDP, the world at large has taken a loss from the industry that has been brought to a standstill and it is not expected to recover soon. According to the UNWTO, over 100 million jobs are at risk and that demand is only expected to recover in 2021.

 

What does this mean for anyone with wanderlust? International travel is going to be off the cards for a long time, but there is still hope for domestic travel and South Africa has a lot to offer.

 

While Durban’s uShaka Marine World and Cape Town’s mountains are popular favourites, there are many other beautiful travel destinations within our nine provinces:

 

  1. Springbok

This Namaqualand town offers proximity to Alexander Bay, bordering Namibia, which offers a “Living Museum” concept. This mining town tells a story of South Africans who have been living in the town for generations. The town is also where the Orange River enters the Atlantic Ocean.

 

 

  1. Tzaneen

Limpopo’s second biggest town is a breath of fresh air from the busy city. The town offers beautiful landscapes and so does the journey to it. Coming from Gauteng, the drive along the winding road of Magoebaskloof, is worth the breathtaking scenery.

 

 

 

  1. Golden Gate Highlands National Park

Located in the Eastern Free State, the park got its name from the magnificent shades of gold the sun casts on the sandstone cliffs. In the hills of the Maluti Mountains, bordering Lesotho, you can also visit the Basotho Cultural Village, take a hike, and even encounter the wildlife including Zebra, Eland and the Oribi.

 

 

 

South Africa is a country with a rich history, cultural diversity, and beautiful landscapes. With several heritage sites, natural parks and the endless scenery, one’s wanderlust can be satisfied without needing a passport.

 

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