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Posts Tagged ‘Mali’

Come to Mali

on The Road to Timbuktu and the Rivers of West Africa.

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A major article in the Boston Globe reports,

By many standards, Africa is doing better than it has in decades. The number of democratically elected governments has risen sharply in the past decade, and the number of violent conflicts has dropped. African economies, and African businesses, are starting to show impressive results, and not just by the diminished standards the rest of the world reserves for its poorest continent. The runaway inflation that crippled African economies for decades is on the ebb, and foreign investment is rising. Last month, the World Bank reported that average GDP growth in Sub-Saharan Africa has averaged 5.4 percent over the last decade, better than the United States, with some countries poised for dramatic expansion.

“For the first time in a long time, you have the potential that a handful of countries could break from the pack and become leopards, cheetahs, or whatever the African equivalent of an Asian Tiger would be,” says John Page, the World Bank’s chief Africa economist, referring to the nickname given East Asian nations like Taiwan and South Korea because of their double-digit growth in the 1960s, ’70s and ’80s.”

Meanwhile, over in Mali, the Bamako beat is taking the world by storm. Travel Dynamics International is very excited to show you Africa — the real Africa, changing and growing — during our extraordinary cruises to this fantastically varied continent.

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A reporter for The Washington Post has a very entertaining and informative article on the road to Timbuktu

Timbuktu seen by early explorers “Then, as the sun dipped below the horizon, the truck beached itself on a mound of hard sand between the tire tracks. We spun the wheels to no avail. We had no shovel and no batteries for the flashlight. As darkness fell, Frabah, looking quite fatigued and coughing miserably, worked to clear a path in front of the truck, using the tire iron for a tool. I wriggled underneath with the butter knife and dug at the sun-baked sand blocking the axles, chipping off chunks the size of grapefruits.”

Sounds taxing. Luckily there’s light at the end of this ordeal:

“I spent two days sifting through several troves of Arabic manuscripts dating back to the 12th century. Abdoul Kader Haidara, a local collector who inherited 3,000 texts from his parents, showed me illuminated copies of the Koran, poems written on camel skin and essays on law, medicine, astronomy and music — evidence of a vibrant cultural life in sub-Saharan Africa at a time when the streets of Europe were overrun with rats.”

Wouldn’t it be much better if you could reach this fabled city by chartered plane flight, after a relaxing cruise aboard an elegant yacht along the rivers of West Africa? We thought so. That’s why we designed our trip The Road to Timbuktu and the Rivers of West Africa — so you can have all of the pleasure, and none of this reporter’s pains.

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