Posts tagged with "travelers"

Travel illustration by Rita Azar for 360 MAGAZINE.

Virginia’s Blue Ridge Vacation At Home

While traveling regulations and personal comfort levels vary, Virginia’s Blue Ridge, VBR, has devised a plan to allow you to travel from the safety of your home. With a new digital campaign, VBR remains a top-of-mind destination through Six Imperfect Substitutions. With Six Imperfect Substitutions, VBR turns some of the region’s popular attractions into easy and fun DIY experience with common household items.  

Shannon Terry, marketing manager at Visit VBR created the campaign. “With my favorite local establishments temporarily closed, I personally started to feel the effects of cabin fever and began brainstorming ways to entertain myself,” said Terry. “What started as a personal joke turned into a light-hearted way to showcase the cool spots in the region that people are missing.” 

The  Six Imperfect Substitutions to experience Virginia’s Blue Ridge from home include: 

  1. Cyclocross Substitute – a fast-paced, off-road bike race including various obstacles and barriers. 
  1. DIY Dixie Caverns – Living rock formation in Salem, VA. 
  1. Makeshift McAfee  – most photographed spot along the Appalachian Trail, a bucket list hike. 
  1. Not Quite Texas Tavern– a 24/7 classic lunch counter and late night eatery that seats 1,000…10 at a time. 
  1. Roaring Run Replacement – waterfall hike near a historic 19th century iron ore furnace. 
  1. Simulated Stiles Falls – stunning 40-ft waterfall hike in Shawsville, VA. 

Check out Six Imperfect Substituations yourself at VisitVBR.com so you and your loved ones can travel and craft without even stepping outside of your home. 

Miyagi – Japan’s Most Relaxing Vacation

Geothermal wonders that rejuvenate the body and mind, Japan’s onsens (naturally occuring hot springs) are a must for any traveler, and Miyagi Prefecture has no shortage of them. With many dotted throughout Miyagi’s diverse terrain, each onsen provides a unique experience with different water sources producing baths of different temperatures, mineral content, texture and more. As these onsens are often located in the mountains, by the ocean and in forests, they provide a great place for travelers to practice the tradition of toji, extended stays at onsens to recuperate from illness or overexertion. Below is a sample of Miyagi’s best onsens for travelers to dream of relaxing in once travel restrictions are lifted.

Reflective pond at Tenshukaku Gardens (©Visit Miyagi)

One of the more popular onsen towns due to its proximity to Miyagi Prefecture’s capital Sendai, Akiu Onsen is tucked in the region’s mountains. The town features about a dozen hot spring hotels located along the scenic Natorigawa River with many offering day use of their hot spring baths. Nearby, Tenshukaku Gardens is home to its own onsen, known as Ichitaro no Yu. After strolling through the traditional Edo-style garden, guests can warm up in the hot spring with a view of Mount Osawa. Lucky bathers may even get to catch a glimpse of kamoshika, a rare Japanese goat-antelope often seen roaming on the mountainside. While the onsen’s water will leave skin soft and silky, Akiu Onsen water is also said to improve quality of sleep, circulation and reduce stress levels.

Sakunami Onsen is located deeper into the mountains and the train ride to this town passes through thick pine and maple tree forests with views of the Hirosegawa River below. This onsen town was often visited by weary monks, members of the shogunate and the shogun himself centuries ago as the water was said to treat a variety of illnesses. After cleansing their mind and body at the onsens on the rocky banks of the river, travelers can opt to hike one of the many trails or take a day trip to the Nikka Whiskey Miyagikyo Distillery.

Naruko Onsen’s diverse hot spring water makes for a rich experience (© JNTO)

Known as one of the “Three Most Scenic Spots of Japan,” Matsushima Bay has its own onsens facing towards the bay with views of countless small islands

Several hotels near the bay have their own natural onsen facilities and staying the night is highly recommended. Guests should make their way out to the open-air baths during the night to see thousands of stars light up the bay. For early birds, the baths are also an ideal spot to watch the sunrise. While Naruko Onsen can be a little hard to get to as it’s hidden away in the hills of northwestern Miyagi, the trip is worth it. Naruko Onsen boasts one of the richest onsen experiences anywhere as the town has eight of the ten types of hot spring water found in Japan. Additionally, the town has more than 400 different springs providing an almost endless variety of bathing facilities. Naruko Onsen also has a wide range of ryokans from traditional inns to luxurious private baths.

The Miyagi Onsen Experience: Watch HERE

For more information on Miyagi Prefecture’s onsens, travelers are encouraged to use the website’s Trip Organizer which has plenty of resources and travel tips. Travelers can also watch this short video highlighting experiences at onsen towns in the prefecture.

Alison Christensen, illustrations, pandemic, 360 MAGAZINE

Coronavirus * Carhops

A lot has been made of the fact that COVID-19 has accelerated a new normal void of handshakes, crowded spaces, and traditional workplaces, but has the virus actually sent us back in time rather than forcing the future?

If trends in fast food are any indication, COVID might be more of a blast from the past than a harbinger of things to come. Since mid-March (when the spread of COVID became front-page news) Sonic–known for its 1950’s-esque drive-in style carhop service–has cemented its place as the preferred fast food destination for diners who have ventured outside their homes.

Regional favorites such as Culver’s (WI) and Popeyes (LA) still have a loyal following in their respective home states and Taco Bell remains a popular choice, but it is clear that Sonic’s unique service model has likely played a role in pandemic-weary travelers looking for a bite to eat.

Princess Cruises Receives Three First-Place Accolades

Princess Cruises Receives Three First-Place Accolades in Cruise Critic’s Annual Cruisers’ Choice Destination Awards

Cruise Line Ranks #1 in Australia & New Zealand, the Baltic & Scandinavia and the U.S. & Canada

Recognized as a destination leader, taking guests to more than 380 worldwide ports of call, Princess Cruises has been awarded three first-place accolades in Cruise Critic’s fourth annual “Cruisers’ Choice Destination Awards.” Based entirely on consumer ratings, the awards name the world’s most popular cruise destinations – as well as the best cruise lines to visit each region. In the Large Cruise Ship Category Princess Cruises was named Top Cruise Line in Australia & New Zealand, the Baltic & Scandinavia and the U.S. & Canada.

In addition, the cruise line ranked in the top three as best in the British Isles & Western Europe (#2); the Eastern Caribbean, Bahamas & Bermuda (#3); Hawaii (#2); Mexican Riviera (#2); the Panama Canal & Central America (#3); South America & Antarctica (#2); the South Pacific (#2) and the Western Caribbean & Riviera Maya (#2) – all in the Large Ship Cruise Line Category.

“It’s an honor to be recognized as the top cruise line to so many bucket-list destinations in this Cruise Critic destination awards,” said Jan Swartz, Princess Cruises president. “Our dedicated team of destination experts, with decades of experience planning itineraries and shore excursions, offer our guests what we believe are the best in the cruise industry.”

One of the best-known names in cruising, Princess Cruises was founded in 1965 with a single ship sailing to the Mexican Riviera. Today, the cruise line is a global premium cruise line and tour company operating a fleet of 17 modern cruise ships, carrying two million guests each year on more than 150 award-winning itineraries to destinations around the globe.

Cruisers interested in U.S. & Canada cruises can choose from several voyages during the upcoming Canada & New England season onboard Princess MedallionClass™ ships Caribbean Princess and Regal Princess. Royal Princess, also a MedallionClass ship, is currently sailing the west coast with voyages to Alaska, the Mexican Riviera and the California Coast. More details regarding itineraries to all recognized destinations, including current promotions, can be found at www.princess.com.

Cruise lines awarded in this year’s awards stood out among all of the lines that sail in each region, receiving the highest ratings from cruisers who sailed with the line over the past year and shared their experiences on Cruise Critic.

“For most travelers, the decision of where to cruise is made before they think about all the other pieces of the cruise planning process,” explains Colleen McDaniel, editor-in-chief of Cruise Critic. “And for those looking for incredible cruise destinations and experiences, there’s no better way to narrow your options than by seeing which destinations and cruise lines are rated most highly by cruisers who have already been there, done that.”

Cruise Critic boasts the world’s largest online cruise community, with more than 50 million opinions, reviews & photos, covering approximately 700 cruise ships and over 500 worldwide ports.

Additional information about Princess Cruises is available through a professional travel agent, by calling 1-800-PRINCESS or by visiting the company’s website at www.princess.com.

About Princess Cruises

One of the best-known names in cruising, Princess Cruises is the fastest growing international premium cruise line and tour company operating a fleet of 17 modern cruise ships, carrying two million guests each year to 380 destinations around the globe, including the Caribbean, Alaska, Panama Canal, Mexican Riviera, Europe, South America, Australia/New Zealand, the South Pacific, Hawaii, Asia, Canada/New England, Antarctica and World Cruises. A team of professional destination experts have curated 170 itineraries, ranging in length from three to 111 days and Princess Cruises is continuously recognized as “Best Cruise Line for Itineraries.”

In 2017 Princess Cruises, with parent company Carnival Corporation, introduced MedallionClass Vacations enabled by the OceanMedallion, the vacation industry’s most advanced wearable device, provided free to each guest sailing on a MedallionClass ship. The award-winning innovation offers the fastest way to a hassle-free, personalized vacation giving guests more time to do the things they love most. MedallionClass Vacations will be activated on five ships by the end of 2019. An activation plan will continue across the global fleet in 2020 and beyond.

Princess Cruises continues its multi-year, “Come Back New Promise” – a $450 million-dollar product innovation and cruise ship renovation campaign that will continue to enhance the line’s onboard guest experience. These enhancements result in more moments of awe, lifetime memories and meaningful stories for guests to share from their cruise vacation. The product innovations include partnerships with award-winning Chef Curtis Stone; engaging entertainment inspired shows with Broadway-legend Stephen Schwartz; immersive activities for the whole family from Discovery and Animal Planet that include exclusive shore excursions to onboard activities; the ultimate sleep at sea with the award-winning Princess Luxury Bed and more.

Three new Royal-class ships are currently on order with the next new ship under construction, Sky Princess, scheduled for delivery in October 2019, followed by Enchanted Princess in June 2020. Princess previously announced that two new (LNG) ships which will be the largest ships in the Princess fleet, accommodating approximately 4,300 guests are planned for delivery in 2023 and 2025.  Princess now has five ships arriving over the next six years between 2019 and 2025. The company is part of Carnival Corporation & plc (NYSE/LSE: CCL; NYSE:CUK).

About Cruise Critic

Cruise Critic® is an online cruise guide, offering a comprehensive resource for cruise travelers, from first-time cruisers to avid cruise enthusiasts. The site features more than 350,000 cruise reviews and hosts the world’s largest online cruise community where travelers share experiences and opinions with fellow cruisers. Cruise Critic was the first consumer cruise site on the Internet, launched in October 1995 by The Independent Traveler, Inc., a subsidiary of TripAdvisor, Inc.

About TripAdvisor

TripAdvisor (NASDAQ:TRIP), the world’s largest travel platform, helps 490 million travelers each month** make every trip their best trip. Travelers across the globe use the TripAdvisor site and app to browse more than 760 million reviews and opinions of 8.3 million accommodations, restaurants, experiences, airlines and cruises. Whether planning or on a trip, travelers turn to TripAdvisor to compare low prices on hotels, flights and cruises, book popular tours and attractions, as well as reserve tables at great restaurants. TripAdvisor, the ultimate travel companion, is available in 49 markets and 28 languages.

The subsidiaries and affiliates of TripAdvisor, Inc. own and operate a portfolio of websites and businesses, including the following travel media brands: www.airfarewatchdog.comwww.bokun.iowww.bookingbuddy.comwww.cruisecritic.comwww.familyvacationcritic.comwww.flipkey.comwww.thefork.com (including www.lafourchette.comwww.eltenedor.com, and www.restorando.com), www.holidaylettings.co.ukwww.holidaywatchdog.comwww.housetrip.comwww.jetsetter.comwww.niumba.comwww.onetime.comwww.oyster.comwww.seatguru.comwww.smartertravel.comwww.tingo.comwww.vacationhomerentals.com and www.viator.com.

Japan Tourism Breaks Record

The Japan National Tourism Organization announced that more than 30 million overseas travelers visited Japan in 2018, an all-time record and an 8.7% increase over 2017 (the previous record year).

“Tourism to Japan from the United States – about 5% of the total – soared 11%,” says Naohito Ise, Executive Director of the Japan National Tourism Organization in New York, “with more and more Americans seeking beyond the classic tourism destinations of Tokyo and Kyoto to discover lesser-known parts of the country.”

In 2018, America’s two most influential travel magazines gave travel to Japan a major thumbs-up, with Travel+Leisure pronouncing Japan the “Destination of the Year” for 2018 and the Condé Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards citing Tokyo and Kyoto as the top two big cities in the world.

“American tourism to Japan is expected to continue to rise in 2019 as the country builds up to host major international sporting events,” continued Ise, “with a host of prestigious American media including Japan in their much-valued annual lists of the most recommended places to visit in the coming year.” The list of media is unusually impressive, including the New York Times, theWall Street JournalAFAR, Architectural Digest, Departures, Fodor’s, and Frommer’s.

For more information about travel to Japan, visit JNTO on its WebsiteFacebookInstagram and Twitter. To contact the Japan National Tourism Organization (JNTO) New York office directly, please e-mail jntonyc_press@jnto.go.jp or call 212-757-5641.

2020 Tokyo Olympic Games

Koshien Stadium (Photo by Joshua Mellin)

In the lead-up to the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games, Japan will play host to a series of noteworthy sporting events taking place across the country throughout 2018 and 2019. Made famous on the world stage for baseball and sumo wrestling, the country offers a wide variety of events of interest to sports enthusiasts and active travelers.
Nippon Baseball Series – October 27, 2018
Considered by many to be Japan’s most popular sport, baseball was first introduced to the Japanese as a prep-school game by an American schoolteacher in the 1870s. Today, both Japan’s professional and high school leagues (or K d;shien) are extremely popular, drawing millions of fans from around the country. Japan’s Nippon Professional Baseball league has even been compared to the United States’ Major League; the league’s reigning champions, the Tokyo-based Yomiuri Giants, have been nicknamed “The New York Yankees of Japan.” The 2018 Nippon Professional Baseball series begins on October 27th and will take place in one of the many stadiums surrounding Tokyo. For more information and schedules, click here.
Cycling Shimanami Bike Tour – October 28, 2018
In October, approximately 7,000 cyclists from around the globe will come together for the Cycling Shimanami Bike Tour, Japan’s most famous cycling event. Known throughout the world as a “Mecca for Cyclists,” the Seto Inland Sea Shimanami Kaido is comprised of a handful of picturesque small islands. Unlike other cycling tours, the courses allow participants to travel from island to island via expressways and bridges. Participants will be matched with one of seven different courses based on their personal skill level and preferences. Throughout the tour, participants will enjoy major scenic attractions, including views of the Seto Inland Sea Shimanami Kaido. The tour will begin in Hiroshima at the Onomichi U2, a renovated warehouse and home to Hotel Cycle, a cyclist hotel with cycle-through check-in and café, bicycle shop, restaurant, bakery, bar and boutique. For more information, click here.
c;mato National Archery Competition, Kyoto – January 13, 2019
The c;mato National Archery Competition is a special archery tournament held each year in Sanjusangen-do, a temple in eastern Kyoto, to commemorate the coming of age for young Japanese men and women. In celebration of their 20th birthdays, approximately 2,000 young adults from across Japan convene at the temple to participate in a contest of aim and skill. The yearly ritual is based on a traditional archery competition called the T d;shiya. After a master archer fires the first shot, the competition commences. Each contestant has two minutes to shoot two arrows at a target set 60 meters away; only those who manage to hit the target both times move on to the next round. Taking place from 9am to 3:30pm, the event is free and attracts many visitors every year. For more information and how to get there, click here.
Marathons Across Japan – January through March 2019
Between January and March of 2019, Japan will host a number of marathons all across the country. Taking place in late January, the Amakusa Marathon is just a 90-minute ferry ride from Goto Island, home of the newly appointed UNESCO World Cultural Heritage site, the Hidden Christian Sites. Also taking place in January is the Ibusuki Marathon (January 13); after the marathon, runners can unwind at the beachfront Ibusuki onsen. Taking place in February 2019 is the Kita-Kyushu Marathon (February 17), the OSJ Amami Jungle Trail Marathon (mid-February), Ehime Marathon (February 10) and Kochi Ryoma Marathon (February 17). In March, runners can participate in the Tokyo Marathon (March 3), the Kagoshima Marathon (March 3), Yoron Marathon (early March) and Tokushima Marathon (late March).
Rugby World Cup – September through November 2019
First held in 1987, the Rugby World Cup is a men’s rugby tournament that takes place every four years, at which 20 of the top teams from across the globe participate. The Rugby World Cup is the world’s third largest sporting event after the Summer Olympics – which is also coming to Japan in 2020 – and the men’s soccer World Cup. From September through November 2019, the Rugby World Cup’s 48 matches will take place at 12 venues throughout Japan including Tokyo, Kumamoto, Yokohama and Sapporo. The tournament will kick off on September 20, 2019 at Tokyo Stadium and will conclude with a final match on November 2, 2019 at Yokohama Stadium in Kanagawa. For more information, click here.
For more information, visit us on our Website, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Google+.
About Japan National Tourism Organization (JNTO)
As the official tourism board of Japan, JNTO is involved in a wide range of promotional activities to encourage international travelers to visit Japan. Through a variety of campaigns and initiatives, JNTO is inspiring more American travelers to visit Tokyo, Kyoto and beyond, and is raising awareness of Japan in the lead-up to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

AirHelp’s New Campaign

AirHelp launches a Passenger Rights Awareness Month.

Alarmingly, there has been in increase in the amount of travelers left at airports due to flight disruptions.

According to a survey authorized by AirHelp, 75% of US travelers confirm that they feel uninformed by airlines about their rights.

As a solution, AirHelp launches a Passengers Rights Awareness Month. By this, a platform is created for worldwide travelers to connect with specially-picked global experts and consumer advocates to inform them about their travelers’ rights. Travelers will also receive helpful information if they ever find their flights to be delayed or cancelled, or if they are denied boarding.

Through this, passengers will always find it useful to learn about their rights to protect themselves for future trips.

Along with this change, AirHelp is opening up its social media platforms to travel connoisseurs and passenger rights advocates from all areas of the world.

The implementation of this is because in the U.S., less than 25% of travelers were on a disrupted flight actually filed a claim, and travelers from other countries are also leaving their issues unclaimed. This clearly shows that the EC 261 regulation is not widespread enough and that further actions must be considered as solutions.

“It is crystal clear that air passengers still feel powerless against airlines and many miss out on the compensation they’re owed by not filing a claim. And if airlines will not play their part to inform and educate their passengers, we will,” says Henrik Zillmer, CEO of AirHelp

With the launch of Passenger Rights Awareness Month, Zillmer hopes this will help improve their efforts in informing travelers of their rights.

For delayed or cancelled flights, or even the denial of boarding, passengers may be entitled to financial compensation of up to $700 per person in certain cases. The conditions for this state that the departure airport must be within the EU, or the airline carrier mist be based in the EU and landing  in the EU.

It is important to keep in mind that for situations deemed as “extraordinary circumstances” such as storms or medical emergencies are exempt when it comes to compensating passengers–they do not qualify for flight compensation.

AirHelp is the world’s leading flight compensation company, helping passengers understand their rights and receiving compensation accordingly are why they are here to help. It has helped more than seven million people process airline compensation claims worth nearly $930 million in total. AirHelp offices are available across the world in 30 countries, supports in 16 languages, and employs more than 500 employees globally. They have served well in the past years and continue to serve on for years to continue.

Mojo Nomad Central

Mojo Nomad Central – a ground-breaking concept designed to turn the traditional hotel model on its head- will open this September on Queens Road Central in the heart of Hong Kong. The property is the second to open from the Mojo Nomad brand, Hong Kong’s first hotel concept with shared working spaces, and a member of the Ovolo Hotels group.

“Following the unprecedented success of Mojo Nomad Aberdeen, on the western shore of Hong Kong Island, we’re excited to unveil a second Mojo Nomad property in Hong Kong, this time in the city’s bustling Central District,” says Girish Jhunjhnuwala, the visionary behind the Mojo Nomad concept, and founder & CEO of Ovolo Hotels. The edgy, design-driven concept draws on the hotelier’s desire to make a difference. “We are giving modern travelers access to a multi-use space where they can be productive, collaborate, seek adventure and experience new things,” continued Girish.

The first of its kind in the region, the Mojo Nomad concept combines a mix of designer rooms, from private to accommodation options for families, groups and friends, paving the way for a new type of value-driven design hospitality. Mojo Nomad’s communal spaces encourage guests to connect with new people and ideas, tapping into a thriving demographic of explorers and addressing the changing demands of the ever-evolving traveler.

The new Mojo Nomad Central offers a total of 56 guest rooms ranging from size S to XL; two of the property’s rooms will offer shared accommodations. Adhering to the brand’s commitment to integrating the latest in technology and design, each room is equipped with multiple USB and traditional plug sockets, as well as international adapters. Shared rooms are fitted with individual televisions and Bluetooth headphone capabilities, as well. A flexible-use space on the property’s second floor will offer a refreshment bar and shared kitchen with additional working and lounge areas. On the third floor, the gym offers TRX equipment, punching bags, yoga mats and more.

A two-story Mexican eatery, Te Quiero Mucho, will serve share-style plates and margaritas alongside a broad selection of artisanal tequilas. The bar, which also serves as the hotel’s reception desk, is decked out with eye-catching neon.

“Our inspirational new hotel collection is designed for those seeking a better way of living. At Mojo Nomad, guests are able to unite around common interests and enjoy a unique style of community living, which values openness and collaboration without compromise. Whether your stay be long or short, you’ll be a part of our community,” concluded Girish.

For more information about Mojo Nomad, visit www.mojonomad.com. For more information about the Ovolo Hotels group, visit www.ovolohotels.com.

ABOUT OVOLO HOTELS

Ovolo Hotels is an independent hospitality company that owns and operates a collection of individually designed hotels. Founded in 2002, the company now runs four hotels in Hong Kong and six hotels in Australia, including in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Canberra. Ovolo also recently launched a new brand, Mojo Nomad, in Aberdeen Harbour, Hong Kong. Mojo Nomad is a cohabitation concept for global nomads that combines travel, lifestyle and community at its core and will be entering the Australian market in the near future.

ABOUT MOJO NOMAD

Established in 2017, Mojo Nomad is a community for global travelers who seek a new way of living. The brand’s vision is to establish a global brand that will consistently go beyond traditional hospitality concepts which allows residents to live, work and travel in an effortless home-feel environment. The Mojo Nomad micro-living hotel concept offers collaborative and fun environments that expose its residents to new people, new ideas and new experiences. Mojo Nomad strives to encourage residents to be active creators and unite them around a common interest to share space, resources, and activities, ultimately inspiring them to contribute creatively and intellectually to the world around them.

Andre Haddad

ANDRE HADDAD, CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER

Haddad has created a business model that benefits Turo hosts and users alike. An industry disruptor, Turo costs about 35% less than normal rental car companies. Haddad’s mission behind Turo was to put billions of cars to better use and fundamentally change the economics of car ownership around the world. In 2017, the average Turo host made an extra $625 a month, which allowed for hosts cover their car payments in as little as nine days. (Data can be found here)
Currently, Haddad and his team have raised over $200,000,000 to date to build this multibillion dollar travel company. Car enthusiasts and travelers have the choice between 850+ makes and models in more than 56 different countries.

Andre loves cars, the consumer web, and the environment, and Turo brings all three of his passions into perfect harmony. Before joining Turo as CEO in September 2011, Andre was CEO of Shopping.com, the leading online comparison-shopping network that eBay acquired in 2005 for $600 million. Prior to Shopping.com, he was Senior Vice President, Product at eBay, where he was responsible for product management, design, and research at eBay’s global marketplace business. Andre played several roles during his time at eBay, including GM in Europe, VP, International Operations, and VP, User Experience and Design.

Before his eBay days, Andre co-founded iBazar, a leading European auction marketplace, which was acquired by eBay in 2001 for $140 million. Andre was COO at iBazar, overseeing Product, Marketing, Operations, and International. Prior to iBazar, he was brand manager at Procter & Gamble and a consultant at Booz Allen & Hamilton. He graduated from HEC Paris.

Travel to South Africa in Honor of Mandela’s Centenary 

2018 is a momentous year for South Africa with the Nelson Mandela Centenary marking what would have been 100 years since the iconic leader’s birth. Officially July 18, 2018 – Mandela Day – marks this historic milestone as throughout the nation, and across the world, people celebrate South Africa’s first black President. Mandela’s legacy as an inspirational anti-apartheid revolutionary and one of the greatest human rights advocates the world has ever seen, cemented his place as one of the 20th century’s most important political figures. This year, South African Tourism invites US travelers to explore this legacy.

In Mandela’s honor, national celebrations will see a series of high-profile events and memorials. On July 17, a day before Mandela Day, former US president Barack Obama will deliver the 16th Nelson Mandela Annual Lecture in Johannesburg. The theme will be “Renewing the Mandela Legacy and Promoting Active Citizenship in a Changing World,” and will honor the centennial of Mandela’s birth.
In Cape Town’s City Hall, a life-sized statue of Madiba will be unveiled on July 24 in the place where he gave his first speech upon release from his 27 year imprisonment.
Internationally, the world’s largest musical tribute will also take place on Mandela Day through a series of charitable concerts held live across the world in support of improving literacy among children. This musical tribute is organized by Mandela Concertswith the goal of raising millions of dollars towards various projects including building 100 new library units in South Africa’s most vulnerable schools, developing a high school skills program, and providing 200 Toddler Trolley library programs for 5 to 6 year-old South African children by 2021.
Often respectfully referred to by his Xhosa clan name Madiba, travelers interested in following in Mandela’s footsteps can download the Madiba’s Journey app. South African Tourism, in collaboration with the Nelson Mandela Foundation, recently re-launched the app to include 100 historic landmarks and sites that influenced Mandela’s life. From the Eastern Cape to Johannesburg to Cape Town and beyond, the app allows users to customize their own itineraries and helps guide them through key landmarks, offering context, photos and curated audio narration about Mandela’s life and the 27 years he spent as a political prisoner. A few notable landmarks are highlighted below:

  • The Eastern Cape: Explore Nelson Mandela’s birthplace – an area of outstanding rugged beauty with pristine coastline, virgin bush and subtropical forests.
  • Robben Island: Tour the jail cell where Nelson Mandela spent 18 years of his life, through the eyes of those who experienced it first-hand. Many tours are led by ex-political prisoners.
  • Constitution Hill in Johannesburg: Formerly used as a prison, it was here where hundreds of political prisoners were held, including Nelson Mandela and Oliver Tambo. Constitution Hill is now a living museum and home to South Africa’s Constitutional Court.
  • The Apartheid Museum in Johannesburg: Acknowledged as the pre-eminent museum in the world dealing with 20th century South Africa, the museum tells the apartheid story.
  • KwaZulu-Natal: Visit this province to see the Nelson Mandela Capture Site. After being on the run for 16 months, Madiba was captured and arrested here in August 1962.
  • Voting Line Sculpture in Port Elizabeth: A tribute to the thousands of South Africans who participated in the nation’s first democratic elections in 1994.

South African Tourism encourages travelers to celebrate, honor and explore the legacy of Mandela through Mandela themed travel packages. A selection of curated experiences are included below:

  • Gate 1 – 8 Day South Africa Tour with Game Drives & Flights — 8 days and 6 nights Enjoy the best of Cape Town by exploring Table Mountain and then visit either the Winelands or Cape Peninsula. After a few days in the “Mother City,” head on to Johannesburg to transfer to the safari portion of your trip in Limpopo Province. You’ll be able to spot all kinds of wildlife while enjoying South Africa’s natural beauty. $1799/ Per person sharing (includes $280pp savings with promo code SATD280) *Terms and conditions apply
  • Africa Answers – Celebrating Mandela’s 100th — 8 days 6 nights On this cultural journey to South Africa, discover Nelson Mandela’s struggle, perseverance, and determination to lead South Africa to Freedom. Explore the bustling city of Johannesburg and spend 3 amazing nights in the cultural rich city of Cape Town. From US $2,499* Per Person Sharing (add a 4th Night FREE in this air-inclusive, 8 night package) *Terms and conditions apply
  • Goway Travel – Walking in his Footsteps – Mandela’s Centenary –10 days and 9 nights Explore the life and legacy of Nelson Mandela with this unforgettable journey into in South Africa. Traveling between Johannesburg, Durban, and Cape Town, you’ll have the opportunity to trace Mandela’s journey from freedom fighter to president and learn about the hardships of apartheid as well as its collapse and the birth of the new Rainbow Nation. From US $3,197* Per person sharing *Terms and conditions apply

For more Nelson Mandela themed packages, visit SouthAfrica.net/deals

For more information about Madiba’s Journey app, visit madibasjourney.southafrica.net