Africa Top10 Lifestyle & Travel News

1Expert View: 7 Leading Photographers from Across the African Continent 

Leading African Photographers

As the market for African art has experienced explosive growth, so too has the interest in and proliferation of African photography. CNN asked 4 African art experts for their picks of today’s most promising talents. Touria El Glaoui is the creative force behind 1-54, an international art fair helping to introduce leading African artists to the global market. She spotlighted photographer Phumzile Khanyile from South Africa. Helen Jennings, editorial director and co-founder of Nataal magazine, a digital and print publication focused on contemporary African fashion, arts and culture, chose to highlight visual artist Prince Gyasi from Ghana. Maheder Haileselassie Tadese, member of the Everyday Africa collective which aims to change perceptions about Africa, spotlighted Kenya’s Brian Otieno. As the founder and director of the international art fair, Art x Lagos, Tokini Peterside has helped amplify African artists’ voice in the global market. She selected two Nigerian photographers, Kadara Enyeasi and Lakin Ogunbanwo.         

SOURCES: CNN

2The Africa-Inspired Furniture Designs of Jomo Tariku Are Just Gorgeous

Jomo Tariku

Kenyan born and of Ethiopian descent, designer Jomo Tariku has introduced a line of furniture inspired by Africa to make you swoon. His beautiful wood pieces are handmade and inspired by the artisans of Sub-Saharan Africa. The two chairs in his collection are the result of his obsession with traditional three-legged stools. The Nyala chair came from a sketch developed after seeing the beautiful horns of the male mountain antelope, and the MeQuamya chair was inspired by the T-shaped prayer staffs used in Ethiopian Orthodox church ceremonies. Tariku says when he started in 2008,  the standard definition of African furniture was either European furniture upholstered with colorful batik fabrics, or hand-crafted pieces, or recycled or upcycled furniture, masks, and so on. That did not align with his approach to designing modern African furniture. 

SOURCES: ELLE DECOR

3Video: Wanuri Kahiu on How ‘Rafiki’ Took the World by Storm Since Premiering at Cannes            

Wanuri Kahiu

Although still banned in the director’s home country of Kenya, ‘Rafiki’ has become an international sensation since it debuted in Cannes, the first Kenyan film to be invited to the prestigious festival. In ‘Moments With: Wanuri Kahiu,’ OkayAfrica sat down with Kenyan director, Wanuri Kahiu where she touches on the inspiration behind ‘Rafiki,’ the continued challenge to lift the ban of her film in her home country, Afrobubblegum and more.

SOURCES: OKAYAFRICA

4The Day Apartheid Died: Photos of South Africa’s First Free Vote

SA's First Free Vote

Recent elections in South Africa marked 25 years since the fall of apartheid, and this photo essay commemmorates the country’s first free election. It was the first in which citizens of all races were able to vote — horrific acts of violence threatened to undermine the hopes for a South Africa freed from white minority rule. White supremacists assassinated a young black leader in his driveway. A mob stoned and stabbed an American volunteer to death, shouting “one settler, one bullet.” And in the black townships, political rivalries set off deadly attacks in which people were burned alive. Yet, the final transfer of power was a remarkably peaceful, joyful four days. Millions of black South Africans, finally full citizens in the land of their ancestors, stood in line for hours, patiently waiting for the chance to vote for new leaders and end the brutal subjugation of the apartheid system. 

SOURCES: THE NEW YORK TIMES

5Colors of the Earth: Ghana’s Incredible, Rammed Earth Walls

Ghana's Rammed Earth Walls

Rammed earth construction is gaining new popularity as an economical, sustainable and potentially beautiful form of architecture, especially at the hands of Ghana’s Joelle Eyeson. The young African entrepreneur, is betting that it may be the answer to the housing deficit in her region. This is a rudimentary construction system in which earth is compressed into wooden boxes and the clay is horizontally placed in layers of 15 cm in height, and compacted with manual or pneumatic tools, to achieve its ideal density creating a resistant and durable structure. Rammed earth constructions are not a novelty, on the contrary, some sections of the Great Wall of China were made using this technique. Relegated and replaced by modern methods of construction, the mud walls are currently re-emerging as an economic, sustainable solution, with low environmental impact. In addition to its low cost, another benefit of building with earth is that it can cool interior spaces, decreasing the use of air conditioning systems. Its maintenance is also low and there is no need to paint the walls. The walls are sound and termite-proof, as well as free of chemicals and toxins that may be present in cement.

SOURCES: DESIGN INDABA

6One of the Greatest Wildlife Experiences can be Found in Africa

Wildlife Experiences Africa

Chimpanzees may get much less hype in the travel media than endangered mountain gorillas, but tracking our closest relative through the African jungle is in fact one of the world’s most thrilling wildlife encounters. Although there are around 300,000 chimpanzees left in the equatorial forests of Africa, observing them in their natural habitat is a rare treat. One of the best places to do so is Kibale Forest National Park in Uganda as it’s home to five habituated groups that are within easy walking distance .The gorillas may be Uganda’s star attraction, but coming face-to-face with a wild chimpanzee is every bit as breathlessly exhilarating. In fact, this experience is arguably better, because the terrain is much easier, the forest less dense, the chimpanzees easier to find, and the price significantly cheaper. All good reasons why you might want to consider putting chimps right at the top of your must-see list.

SOURCES: LONELY PLANET

7Where to Stay in Marrakesh

Marrakesh’s hotel scene

Marrakesh’s hotel scene is constantly changing – helped by more than 1,000 riad hotels squeezed in among the narrow alleyways and souks of the Medina neighbourhood. These mini-Edens – all with a central courtyard garden (where the word “riad” comes from) – have been mushrooming in the Medina, veering between simplicity and no-holds-barred luxury. Then there’s the Ville Nouvelle and the lush palm groves of La Palmeraie north of the city, if you’re looking for something a bit further away from the action.

SOURCES: THE INDEPENDENT

8Join the Hashtag Crowd with a Trip to Cape Town

Cape Town

The Mother City is famous for its natural beauty. Mountain ranges that form spectacular skylines, unique endemic fynbos, boulder-lined, sandy beaches, winelands that boast striking views: Cape Town has it all. No person with any form of camera hasn’t spent time capturing its lovely scenery, whether to appreciate it again and again or to show it off to friends. Hoppa, a travel comparison company, has recently voted Cape Town as one of the world’s most Instagrammable cities. The rank of a city was determined by number of times its hashtag was used on social media between March 2018 and March 2019. The Cape Town hashtag has been used close to 10 million times. The list consisted of 50 global cities, where each was also rated for what it was most popular for. The categories included selfies, scenery, sexually suggestive content, food, and couples.

SOURCES: GETAWAY

9Africa’s 25 Most Liveable Cities

Africa’s Most Liveable Cities

Many cities on the continent offer attractive environments in which to do business, and the quality of living is an essential component of a city’s attractiveness. The appeal of cities as a place to live and work is a key aspect of attracting talent as well as global and local businesses. In Africa, Port Louis is the city with the best quality of living and also the safest. It was closely followed for overall quality of living by the South African cities of Durban, Cape Town and Johannesburg, though these cities still rank low for personal safety, and issues around water scarcity contributed to Cape Town. Gambia’s progress toward a democratic political system and improved international relations and human rights meant that Banjul had the most improved quality of living in Africa, but also in the world, rising six places this year. Victoria, the capital city of the Republic of Seychelles also features in Africa.com’s list alongside Tunis, Rabat, Dakar, Accra and Lusaka.

SOURCES: AFRICA.COM

10Top Destinations for South African Travellers 

South African Travellers

London saw a spectacular year-on-year growth of 47%, while Lagos and Mauritius reported year-on-year increases in numbers of respectively 35% and 34%. In fourth and fifth place are Harare and Dubai: traffic to Harare from South Africa increased by 24% and flights to Dubai were up 17%. With more and more South African companies seeking to exploit opportunities north of our borders, it is not surprising to see Lagos place as the second fastest growing business destination for South African travellers. The fact that Mauritius with its attractive tax regime and stable economy is the third fastest growing business destination comes hardly as a surprise. The country ranked as the highest economy in Sub-Saharan Africa on the World Bank’s ‘Ease of Doing Business’ Index and the country’s banks have become beacons of growth and stability in sub-Saharan Africa.

SOURCES: IOL

ADC Editor
ADC editors curate, aggregate, and produce news and information for Africa. Contribute stories by sending an email to media@africa.com.