Off the Beaten Path
Welcome to our online newsletter.  May it provide you with ideas & inspiration!

SPECIAL PLACES- LOLIONDO, NORTHERN TANZANIA                                    


Travel to the eastern border of the Serengeti National Park, to a special area not subject to the same rules and regulations of the National Parks system. Meaning, escorted walks, night drives and authentic interactions with the Maasai are just some of the activities that one can do here.

Loliondo offers beautiful and diverse landscapes-- mountains, deep gorges, rivers, acacia and riverine woodlands, rolling hills and lush valleys, grassy plains dotted with kopjes (rocky outcrops) and even a volcano.

A group of Global Sojourners traveled here in March 2008 for an extraordinary adventure, some of the favorite highlights were:

  • Spectacular sundowners with 360 degree views
  • Hiking among zebras, wildebeest and giraffes
  • Exploring gorges and hills on foot and by vehicle
  • Going on a run with a Maasai warrior
Check out the photos, read about the trip and highlights from each traveler.

SOJOURNERS' TRAVEL EXPERIENCE                                                            

 

Travel Log: Southern Africa

Written by Aley Hasson
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In this issue, we're sharing a longer, more comprehensive account of one of our Sojourner's travel experiences.  Aley shares what it's like to travel to Africa for the first time. Enjoy!

The following is an excerpt from my impressions while traveling in southern Africa during May 2008. During this time, I traveled with five other women through four countries on safari and visited charitable organizations supported by the Global Sojourns Giving Circle in Livingstone, Zambia. Please check out the Global Sojourns Blog for the full story.
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Wait, what?" The driver had just told us of his recent trip to Malawi to show his wife what real poverty looked like.  Looking out the van's window, during the first moments after arriving in Johannesburg I came across the first of many questions during my time in southern Africa.  Right in front of me, the poverty was as clear as day, an arm's length away as we drove through the city.  The surrounding unfamiliarity had suddenly hit me- unsettled, I wanted to know more.  It was a proper welcome to Africa.

Continue reading

TRAVEL TIPS                                                                                             


  To read more about this trend and how it can potentially slow everyone up and cost the airlines more, check out the Washington Post article.

Need more inspiration? The ONE BAG website is dedicated to helping people travel light and offers useful advice for all travelers.
photo by Terminal5 Insider

RESPONSIBLE SOJOURNER                                                                       

co2offset    VOLUNTOURISM

It's in all the media these days, stories about combining international travel and voluntary work- families going to Mexico for a week to build a house, a nurse volunteering her skills in Thailand for a month, a couple doing trail maintenance in Costa Rica for a few days. 

When organized responsibly, voluntourism is beneficial to local communities and wonderfully fulfilling for the traveler.  But if the programs are poorly designed, even volunteers with the best of intentions can find themselves causing more harm than good and feeling frustrated.

The key is to know if this is right for you.

Keep in mind that the shorter the volunteer experience, the more challenging it is to find projects that are truly beneficial to the local community.  If you just have a few days to offer, you might consider environmental related projects.

Global Sojourns is always keeping an eye out for volunteer opportunities to offer interested clients as part of their travels.  At times it may be more beneficial for you to "give back" by meeting locals, learning, engaging and contributing funds rather than doing traditional volunteer work.  We're happy to help you find a good fit.

A couple of good resources include: EthicalVolunteering.org and Voluntourism.org.
 
For a good overview of the trend in volunteering, check out this Conde Nast Traveler article.

-Priscilla
Advisory board member of Voluntourism.org and of Traveler's Philanthropy
TRIPS IN THE WORKS                                                                                   
Where in the World Would You Like to Go?

Global Sojourns is all about customizing travel- whether it's for your family, your friends or a small group of people who don't necessarily know one another, but all want to explore a particular destination.  Unlike travel companies that set itineraries and dates for group trips at least a year in advance and advertise them to the masses, we build trips around our clients' interests and special opportunities that arise.
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At times someone will toss out an idea that sparks energy and we'll "make it happen".  For instance, it was Priscilla's husband's b-day wish to go mountain biking in Mongolia so we created a trip and invited all GS clients and their friends to join in.  The group just returned and they had a fabulous time!

GS has organized small groups to go to Namibia, Botswana, South Africa, Thailand, Ecuador, Tanzania, Zambia and Peru. Even those of us who aren't "group travel" people have a blast.  What makes our group trips so darn fun?  The groups are small, we get off the beaten path in great locations, have unique experiences and we gather terrific people- generally former clients and their friends- fun, flexible, curious and adventurous sojourners!

So, while we have some set itineraries we're working on, we'd love to hear from you where you're interested in going.  Of course, you'll find us tossing out various ideas to see what catches too.  It just takes a few people to commit to a place and a date and we'll quickly get the dates and details lined up and announce it to sojourners.  So far people have really enjoyed this and we hope to expand on it.  

If traveling with a fun group catches your interest, take a look below and let us know what you think
Also, check out comments and photos from past trips.

2009 Trips
Giving Circle Trips to Botswana and Zambia:
We'll take advantage of shoulder season and green season rates to visit some of the best safari lodges/reserves on the continent. Learn about issues facing the region and visit people and projects that the Giving Circle supports in the area.
Proposed dates: March and June 2009

Ecuador:
Central and southern highlands- hiking and exploring: Cuenca, Devil's Nose train, Cotopaxi and Galapagos Islands 
Most likely November 2009

Mongolia: Hiking, Mountain Biking and Camel Riding
This was such a hit that we plan to offer it again.  Most likely June 2009. 

Peru:  Hike to Machu Picchu while staying in mountain lodges, expl
ore the Sacred Valley
Another hit from last year that we'd like to offer again.  Most likely October 2009
 

co2offset Other Trips in the Works" for 2009 & 2010
South Africa:

The Garden Route- multi-day supported hike; the Argus bike ride in Cape Town.

Rwanda & Zanzibar:
Gorillas and Hiking, then enjoying the warm waters off of Zanzibar and Chumbe Island.
 
Tanzania: 
Southern parks: Ruaha, Selous, etc.

Fiji: Kayak in the rivers and the sea.

ETC.                                                                                                          

Have you traveled with Global Sojourns and have two minutes to spare?  We are listed on the Adventure Travel online directory and a new feature allows people to write reviews-- so if you have a moment, share with the world what you think of Global Sojourns. It is also a great resource to share with adventurous friends in finding reputable companies servicing other parts of the world.

Click to write a review. THANKS!

JUST FOR FUN                                                                                             DID YOU KNOW?

Dueling is legal in Paraguay as long as both parties are registered blood donors.
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We hope you've enjoyed our newsletter, Off The Beaten Path and that you will share it with friends.  We hope to provide you with travel ideas, stories and tips that inform and inspire.
 
If you would like us to design your next trip, contact us at macy@globalsojourns.com or 703-528-2992.  Check out our website at www.globalsojourns.com.
 
Priscilla Macy
Global Sojourns


Global Sojourns customizes itineraries for individuals and small groups to Africa and around the globe.  Through a commitment to responsible tourism and relationships with local experts, we provide you with trips that balance outdoor adventures with cultural insights and authentic interactions with local people.  We are passionate about our work and providing you with fun, meaningful and memorable travel experiences.

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