Bellafricana Expands To Support Creative Entrepreneurs Across Africa

Community of African Creatives

We are filled with a sense of gratitude and passion for what we have built together. When Bellafricana started, it was borne out of a deep-seated desire to create what we describe as a sanctuary which would not only give creative entrepreneurs the visibility they deserved but also help them build the business structures and support system they need to grow.

We have been a driving force behind the growth of thousands of creative businesses in Africa, providing unparalleled support to the entire African creative community and connecting their products to local and international customers.

Bellafricana is a tech-enabled community that provides a platform for creative entrepreneurs in the fashion, arts & craft, beauty, home & living, food produce & snacks industry, to increase their visibility and have the right business support and structure that gives them the capacity to grow their business. Currently, we are the leading community for African-Owned creative businesses with a growing network of over 20,000 creative entrepreneurs.

In addition, our members have saved a whopping ₦20 million (over $40,000) off their marketing training expenses and bagged sponsorship from the prestigious Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC), valued at a staggering ₦63.5 million (over $141,000).

Bellafricana Ace awards
BELLAFRICANA ACE AWARDS

Through our extensive brand exposure, our members have been featured on highly acclaimed TV stations such as Hip TV and Silverbird TV – cementing their position as industry leaders. Some of our members has also been featured in international screen like CCN. Further, our members have secured various grants including the illustrious Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF) grant, worth a hefty $5,000.

Also, some of our members have been shortlisted for the Jack Ma Prize (African Business Heros Award), a testament to their innovative drive and ingenuity. Our community is not just about recognition and accolades, our members have also achieved tangible business growth – expanding their customer base and boosting their sales.

Similarly, our commitment to promoting African creativity led us to create the ACE Awards, an initiative that lauds the creative works of Nigerians and Africans, making open competition affordable and accessible. The ACE Awards continue to encourage more businesses to look inwards and create more globally acceptable brands.

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Over the years, Bellafricana has evolved into something much more than we ever could have imagined. We have become a family, a community that not only supports and encourages each other but also inspires and motivates us to strive for excellence every day. As business owners ourselves, we know firsthand the struggles that come with trying to turn your passion into a viable business. The sleepless nights, the self-doubt, the endless setbacks – these are all part of the journey. But with the right support system, we can overcome these challenges and achieve our dreams.

At Bellafricana, we are not just building a community, we are building a movement. A movement that is focused on promoting African creativity, empowering local businesses, and showcasing the best of what Africa has to offer.

Bellafricana community

That is why we are thrilled to announce that we are opening up our doors  to even more creative entrepreneurs to come in for free. It is our hope that this will allow us to continue to serve more people, grow the community and provide the support and resources they need to succeed. We have created a tech-enabled community which will bring together experts and mentors to offer business support and structure that gives our members  the capacity to grow their businesses. This community will be powered by our rich network of individuals who are passionate about promoting African creativity and are committed to supporting local businesses.

Our team has been working tirelessly to ensure that we provide a seamless experience for all our members and those who would be coming in and prepare them for better engagement and networking opportunities. With this platform, we can accommodate more members and provide a wider range of resources and support, and deliver on our mandate to serve the creative community.

But this is just the beginning. Our ultimate goal is to build the largest network of African creative Entrepreneurs and a platform that would host their creative products, and with your help, we will achieve more as we keep moving several steps forward in the right direction. By supporting each other, sharing our knowledge and expertise, and collaborating on new projects, we can create globally acceptable brands for African creative works and make a real difference in the world.

Commuity of African creatives

CONCLUSION

We are filled with a sense of purpose and passion when we think about the impact that we have made together. The Bellafricana community is more than just a business; it is a movement, a force for good that is changing lives and inspiring the next generation of creative entrepreneurs.

Thank you for being a part of this journey with us. Your support and dedication to our community inspires us every day. Join us on this journey, together, we will build a home for creative entrepreneurs, a place where creative passions can thrive, and our dreams can become a reality. You too can become a member of the bellafricana community, click here to join.  

Meet The Founder Of Sisi Aladire Enterprises (SAE)

If you’re African, (Nigerian especially) then the word “Adire” is a familiar name to you. In this interview, we had a conversation with a Bellafricana Verified Member, Sisi Aladire, whose Brand has long become a Household name in the world of Adire.

Meet Ms Olubunmi Davies of Sisi Aladire Enterprises (SAE).

Read on to learn about how the amazing Sisi Aladire Enterprises was born, goals for the nearest future, and many more.

Please introduce yourself

I am S. M. Olubunmi Davies (Ms), a retired Architect and the founder/Chief Executive Officer of Sisi Aladire Enterprises(SAE). As a daughter of a diplomat, I went to school in 5 countries.

I actually wanted to be a broadcaster, but a friend of my father, told me to study Architecture. I am a member of Neca’s Network of Entrepreneurial Women (NNEW), an organization that has taught me a lot about being an entrepreneur.

I live and work in Lagos.

Tell us about your work. How did Sisi Aladire Enterprises start?

I started Sisi Aladire Enterprises about 30 years ago.

I really do not remember why I started but I remember talking to late Mrs Okuboyejo (Betti-O) about buying and selling Adire fabrics. I spent a weekend in her house, creating different patterns on plain fabrics. I would go to Abeokuta to buy some Adire to sell to family and friends.

When Betti-O found out the quantity of Adire I was going to buy in Abeokuta, she told me to buy at Tejuosho market because the difference in price was little. The first product made by SAE, is the Yemisi bag, a tote bag which was an improved version of an Ankara bag, given to me by Ms Yemisi Ransome-Kuti.

I got tailors to make outfits for me with Adire which people liked. Orders were made and SAE started making ready to wear garments.

Picture of the Yemisi Bag, as held by Prof. Judith Byfields
 How did you come about the name and what does it mean?

I liked Aladire, but there was already a business with that name, so I added “Sisi” to the “Aladire”.

 What is your niche and how did you know it was a market to get into?

To be truthful, I did not know that there was a niche in the market. I liked the idea of selling Adire and got started.

In the 1980s, I do not believe most people did market research before starting a business.

 Where do you get the inspiration for your products?

Initially, I made outfits or garments that I liked, but after some time, people asked for what they wanted.

At times, I adapt styles that I see on people or in magazines.

Can you remember one of the first products you made?  

Like I said Earlier, the first product was the tote bag named after Ms Yemisi Ransome-Kuti. Although it has been modified over the years, it is still a popular product of SAE.

 What are some of the challenges you face in your business?

I did not do any research before I started my business, because I did not know I was suppose to do so, therefore, issues like funding and structure were not considered at the beginning.

Now, I am working with some consultants on creating a structure for the business.

Tailors, especially good ones are not easy to get. Work ethics is also an issue with tailors.

Do you have any regrets venturing into this line of business?

No, I do not have any regret venturing into this business. Although I wish I knew some of the things I know now when I started.

What is your most popular product?

It is difficult to say. At times, I get orders for kaftans, wrap round skirts, tops or bags. However, I believe I have sold more tote bags than any other product.

To what extent do you draw upon your Nigerian (African) heritage for your work?

Adire is a product of a traditional industry, but we are adapting it to suit contemporary life style.

What are some of your short term and long term goals, both in your business and life in general?

My short term goal for SAE, is to make it very successful, financially, while making Adire fabric, the preferred fabric of choice.

The long term goal, is to have a massive factory with about 10 thousand workers, producing garments, bags, accessories and many other products with Adire fabrics.

What would people be surprised to learn about you?

Most people are usually surprised when I tell them that I am an Architect.

What profession would you be in if you weren’t in this Industry?

I think I will like to be a painter.

If you could give one piece of advice to anyone who wants to start their own business in your industry, what would it be?

Anyone who wants to start a business, any business, must be steadfast, have a positive mindset and be ready for setbacks.

Connect with Ms Buunmi Davies on Instagram @sisialadire. Otherwise, you can reach her on +2348023343453

Follow us on Instagram @bell_africana for more amazing creative indigenous brands, and to fine out more about the beauty of Africa.

Why Buhari Finally Signed the AfCFTA Agreement and What This Means for Nigerians

AfCFTA/African Continental Free Trade Agreement is a trade agreement with the sole aim of creating a single market, free movement and an African single-currency union.

The idea of free trade is to reduce trade barriers and increase the trading of goods and services between member states thus protecting local markets and industries. So far, 54 states have signed the AfCFTA agreement, and it has Ratification by 22 countries thus, making the AfCFTA agreement effective.

Nigeria was one of the last countries to sign the AfCFTA agreement as Nigerian President, Muhammadu Buhari avoided signing the agreement both on March 21st, 2018 and July 21st, 2018 because he felt Nigeria could not do anything that would undermine local manufacturers and, they also needed to consult with local, indigineous businesses so as to ensure private sector buy-in to the agreement in order to  prevent anti-competitive practices.

AfCFTA
Photo credit: Saharareporters.com

Luckily for Nigerians, on July 2nd, 2019 Muhammadu Buhari announced the signing of the agreement and, on July 7th, 2019, the agreement was signed; making Nigeria one of AfCFTA countries with free trade benefits. Why then did he sign the agreement after the prolonged refusal to do so?

He said in a statement: “Nigeria wishes to emphasize that free trade must also be fair trade. As African leaders, our attention should now focus on implementing the AfCFTA in a way that develops our economies and creates jobs for our young, dynamic and hardworking population.

“I wish to assure you that Nigeria shall sustain its strong leadership role in Africa, in the implementation of the AfCFTA. We shall also continue to engage, constructively with all African countries to build the Africa that we want.”

AfCFTA, just like Bellafricana is a platform that enables indigenous manufacturers of Made In Africa goods to market and sell their products/services to their consumers whilst building local wealth (click here to find out how you can join the Bellafricana platform).

One of AfCFTA’s goal is to transform trade in Africa but, what does this mean for Nigerians? What are the advantages or benefits of AfCFTA to Nigerians now that the agreement has been signed?

AfCFTA increases access to higher-quality products; allowing consumers to buy better-quality, locally made products at a lower price thus, driving economic growth and increasing trade (click here to know how you can increase your sales and grow your business).

It requires local businesses/manufacturers to adapt to the shifting demands of the marketplace. These adjustment is what fuels long-term growth as manufacturers begin to produce based on what is actually demanded thus, driving competitiveness and growth.

It reduces the importation of international goods as well as import-input costs, thus reducing the cost of production in Nigeria whilst promoting the growth of Made in Nigerian products.

It also enables workers and resources to be used productively thus, promoting a dynamic economy whilst creating new job opportunities, higher wages and investments.

NEPC restores AGOA visa stamp to exporters

The Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC) has re-introduced the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) Visa Stamp to exporters to ensure that they participate and benefit more from the Act before it expires in 2025.

AGOA is an act of parliament passed by the United States Congress in 2000. Also referred to as Trade and Development Act, it was meant to assist the economies of sub-Saharan Africa and improve economic relations between the U.S and the region.

AGOA is currently in act until 2025. After completion of the initial 15-year period it was extended by one more decennium, including newly added products. The products newly covered by the legislation include items such as:

  • Agricultural products
  • Apparel and footwear
  • Motor vehicle components
  • Chemicals
  • Wine
  • Steel

So why is this act interesting for you as exporter? AGOA provides Nigerian exporters with numerous attractive advantages in doing international business:

  • Duty-free access for eligible products to USA
  • Significant competitive tariff advantages over non-AGOA countries
  • Encouragement of regional integration and production sharing among beneficiary countries
  • Security of the act ensured until 2025

To be duty-free eligible under AGOA, US customs requires a certificate of origin and an AGOA stamp on a commercial invoice. These documents are needed in addition to the always required documentation for imports. You cannot apply for AGOA certification in the US. It must be done by yourself in Nigeria.

If you want to benefit from AGOA, contact the regional NEPC-office in Lagos via, email [email protected]  or [email protected].

Speaking at the NEPC workshop on AGOA Visa Stamp utilisation in Lagos, the agency’s Executive Director, Mr. Olusegun  Awolowo, said AGOA was also meant to forge stronger commercial ties between Nigeria as well as other qualified African countries and the United States.

Represented by the Deputy Director, National Office on Trade, Mr. Saave Nanakaan, Awolowo said AGOA was meant to help integrate Nigeria and other African counties into the global economy.

 

He said the extension of the scheme to 2025 was because many African economies such as Rwanda and Uganda performed better than Nigeria under the scheme.

Visa Stamp, which was introduced on January 18, 2016, took effect from February 8 of the same year. It was another step to further simplify U.S market access of textiles and garments from AGOA-eligible countries.

Under the process, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative has directed U.S. Customs and Border Protection to permit importers to submit electronic images of appropriate export visas when claiming preferential treatment for textile and apparel products under the Act.

Textile and apparel goods from an AGOA beneficiary country will only receive preferential duty treatment once a visa arrangement is established. Visas are issued by the government of beneficiary sub-Saharan African countries.

Trade With Africa Summit 2019 Takes Chicago

I was going through my Instagram feed one weekend, when I saw a post that said and I quote ”The world is getting everything it wants from Africa. Is Africa getting everything it wants from the world?” this caught my attention and got me thinking a whole lot, trying to figure out the best way for African businesses to really thrive and enjoy the full potential of all that we offer to the world. I decided to find out who put up that post, at least to understand the reason behind it, that’s when I found out abut the Trade With Africa Summit coming up on the 1st and 2nd of August 2019 in Chicago. This event is powered by Nazaru, a cargo and freight company founded by Toyin Umesiri.

The Trade with Africa Business Summit creates trade linkages by bringing together business leaders and their supporting service providers from Africa and U.S. to engage in dialogue that will catalyze economic growth for both region.

Over the past 20 years, European, Asian and other large economies have established an increasingly heavy presence on the continent of Africa in all major sectors, including Agriculture, Technology and Infrastructure building. They succeeded in this by not only establishing strong partnerships with the African Government but also with the Africa’s business community.

In 2000 President Clinton established the Africa Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) to help close U.S. trade gaps with Africa. Although some level of success has been accomplished, trade experts, conclude that there is more room to grow. On the U.S. side there are several trade constraints, including lack of awareness, relevant business data, capacity misconceptions and an information gap. On the African side there is also a lack of information related to U.S. standards, available business partnerships and opportunities for African businesses.

You should definitely plan to attend this year’s edition of the Trade With Africa Summit, if you fall under any of the categories below, or are looking for an opportunity to connect  and network with;

  •  Investors
  • Global Business Leaders
  • Trade experts (export & import)
  • U.S. Government Agencies
  • Policy Makers (U.S. & African)
  • Buyers
  • Technologists & Innovators
  • Service providers with Trade Solutions (i.e. Packaging, Shipping, Transportation, Logistics, Banking e.t.c)
  • Exhibitors with products and or services
  • African Diaspora Community
  • Non-profits and friends of Africa

The benefits of this engagement are multi-fold; For the U.S. based business community it serves to showcase the vast opportunities in Africa while highlighting new regions for exports and imports under favorable trade policies,. It also provides the unique opportunity to discuss with high-level officials current concerns or impediments to doing business. For African Exporters, business leaders and Governments leaders, it will offer an opportunity to promote their country, help expand their offerings under Africa Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) to create jobs, and increase investment. For African businesses, it will also provide access to the largest importers, help prepare them to pitch their goods, and open a pipeline that can then be continued through sustainable business partnerships.

I believe that the growth potential for African businesses is huge, and it is time for us to take charge and bridge this gap. Click here for more details of the event.

Tourism The Beauty Of Africa – 3 Things To Do In Cairo

Cairo, Egypt’s sprawling capital, is set on the Nile River. At its heart is Tahrir Square and the vast Egyptian Museum, a trove of antiquities including royal mummies and gilded King Tutankhamun artifacts. Nearby, Giza is the site of the iconic pyramids and Great Sphinx, dating to the 26th century BC. In Gezira Island’s leafy Zamalek district, 187m Cairo Tower affords panoramic city views. Apart from these really cool ”serious” stuff, there are so many fun hings to do in the beautiful capital of Egypt, and I have highlighted 3 things you should definitely do when you get to Cairo.

1. Take a hike

From late March to early June, temperatures in Cairo are springtime perfection, wavering around a median 30°C. The trees are in bloom, students are finishing exams and Cairenes are all smiles and more relaxed. Take in the carefree vibe with a walk through downtown’s cluttered maze, along the breezy Corniche or around Zamalek’s leafy streets. Beware of April’s sporadic sand storms and thunderstorms; if the sky turns a dusty colour, it’s time to duck indoors.

2. Drop in on an arts festival

D-CAF, Cairo’s three-week Downtown Contemporary Art Festival, runs to late April, and it’s spread over multiple sites downtown. The festival fuses performing arts with film, photography and urban vision workshops run by top artists and educators from around the world. Expect cross-genre mashing, such as ‘interactive dance calligraphy performance’. Check out the concert photography workshop, which promises to teach the skill of the ‘killer shot’, or a new media arts workshop, such as the 3D projection mapping audio visual performance training. If you prefer to sit back and take in a film, save a night in mid-May for an art house film at Zawya, which hosts the Cairo Cinema Days festival, showcasing around 40 contemporary award-winning feature and documentary films from across the Arab region. The festival also screens some historic heavy hitter films and has panels and Q&A sessions with filmmakers.

3. Scout out contemporary Egypt in Old Cairo

Old Cairo is home to a trove of historic wonders, from the 7th-century Hanging Church of Coptic Cairo to the millennium-old Mosque of Amr Ibn Al As. But within the Fustat area of Old Cairo stands Darb 1718, an outdoor contemporary art and culture centre that in springtime weather, is the perfect place to spend an afternoon. The centre hosts live music concerts, fashion, art exhibitions, open-mic nights and education workshops. This spring you can get your hands dirty with a pottery workshop and or learn about light refraction and shutter speed at a photography class. April’s hieroglyphics workshop is sure to be a hit.

What other things do you love to do, or are you looking to do in Cairo? Feel free to leave a comment.

SA textile union welcomes H&M deal with SA designer

The Southern African Clothing and Textile Workers’ Union (SACTWU) has welcomed the announcement today by Swedish global retailer H&M that it will be collaborating with South African designer, Palesa Mokubung, and her label, Mantsho.

On Tuesday, H&M announced its first African collaboration with Mokubung’s label, which was established in 2004 and has since graced numerous runways in Greece, India, the United States, Jamaica, Nigeria, Botswana and Senegal.

Until now, none of the products sold in H&M’s 23 local stores have been made in South Africa.

SACTWU said in a statement that it was a long-standing supporter of Mokubung’s work, citing how the Mantsho label was featured as far back as at its 2008 Fashion Festival held in the cutting room of the Levi Strauss SA factory in Cape Town.

Andre Kriel, SACTWU general secretary, said the union and its clothing, textile, footwear and leather (CTFL) members were looking forward to seeing South African product in H&M’s stores.

“As foreign retailers, like H&M, Zara and Cotton On, have grown their South African footprint, they have increasingly taken market share away from domestic retailers. This has caused a ripple effect in which local factories supplying those domestic retailers are losing orders, and job losses and factory closures are the result,” Kriel said.

“SACTWU congratulates H&M on moving forward with this local sourcing project. The union views this collaboration with Mokubung as the first part of a much deeper collaboration. From SACTWU’s side, to assist H&M with its designer collaboration, the union has helped to ensure that compliant producers manufacture the Mantsho products.”

Mantsho will be available in all South African stores, exclusive flagship stores in the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Spain, Portugal, Netherlands, Belgium, Mexico, Chile and Israel, as well as all H&M online markets from August 15.

Kriel said H&M’s local sourcing project represents the power of constructive social dialogue and the promise such dialogue holds to re-shape some of the harmful components of global trade.

“We look forward to a positive outcome and growing relationship with H&M in which their local sourcing footprint is deepened substantially, where their contribution to employment creation in local CTFL factories is expanded significantly, and where their global reach can be used to showcase South African design and quality, manufactured under decent work conditions,” Kriel said.

This is great news, as this goes to prove that there is hope for more African brands in Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana etc to penetrate the global market through great deals such as this.

This article was originally published on iol.co.za

5 Reasons Why I Want To Visit Mauritius

Lately I have been thinking about travelling the world, and making memories that I will gist my kids about later on when they’re born, and almost everyone around me seemed to be talking about Mauritius, so I decided to do some research, and now I really want to go there!!!! Don’t judge me yet though, here are 5 reasons why I really want to visit Mauritius.

  1. I always aced Geography in high school, and I really did love the subject. But I never got to see many of the things I was taught in my textbooks. E.g Volcanos. Interestingly, Mauritius is a volcanic island that first rose above the waves eight million years ago. Who wouldn’t want to see that? Especially if you claim to love Geography
  2.  In 2017, Mauritius was named one of only four countries in the world which had no involvement in ongoing international or domestic conflict and no tensions with neighboring countries. The others were Botswana, Chile and Uruguay.
    (Source: p.13, Global Peace Index 2017) 
  3. Known to Arab and Malay sailors as early as the 10th century , Mauritius was first explored by the Portuguese in the 16th century and subsequently settled by the Dutch, the French and the British in the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries respectively. It finally gained independence in 1968.
    (Source: CIA World Factbook) Four different colonial masters, and they still managed to stay grounded till date? Please I need to go there and ask some questions.

  4. The is no official language in Mauritius, although English and French are the ‘national languages’. The vast majority of the population (85.6%) speak Creole, a French-based patois.
    (Source: CIA World Factbook) I am thinking about teaching a few people the Pidgin English I learnt while I visited Warri for 4 months. I’m positive that they will love to learn it.
  5. The life expectancy in Mauritius – 70 years for men and 75 years for women – is higher than the world average and is well above the average for African countries.
    (Source: Britannica) I just want to find out how they live that long. I want to live long too. I need to confirm if the world will actually be run by robots like all those sci-fi movies tell us.

Above all, Mauritius is a really beautiful island, and I love beaches, I am a fine girl, and I have a good camera on my phone. Don’t we just go together like bread and butter?

Have you been to Mauritius? I’d love to hear about your experience. Please leave a comment below.

Kenyan Company Green Nettle Textile won a major fashion award for making fabric from nettles

Organic fibers made from nettles has bagged a Kenyan company one of the world’s top sustainable fashion prizes.

Green Nettle Textile was this year awarded almost $170,000 as part of the $1.1 million Global Change Award, a fashion innovation challenge initiated by H&M Foundation in collaboration with management consulting firm Accenture and the KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Sweden. Described by some as the Nobel Prize for sustainable fashion, the award seeks to disrupt the fashion industry by choosing early stage ideas and incubating them towards the goal of an environmentally-conscious, circular fashion instead of a wasteful, linear model.

This year, the competition received 6,640 entries from 182 countries, with a tremendous increase in entrances from emerging markets. Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, and South Africa were among the top 10 nations that submitted entries for the award.

Green Nettle won the award along with four other firms that made expanding children’s clothes (United Kingdom), a biodegradable vegan leather (Peru), a digital system that helps make garments recyclable from sketch to scrap (Germany) besides a toxic-free membrane for outdoor wear (Switzerland). Besides financial support, the winners will also get access to a mentorship program that will take them to markets including Sweden, Hong Kong, and the United States.

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Using nettles in producing fabric was astute given that the plant grows in Kenya and is used for nutritional and medicinal purposes. After the Kenya Bureau of Standards certified the plant in 2009, farmers in Kenya started betting on its newfound commercial capabilities. Green Nettle Textile is now proving an extension of that dynamism, hoping to grow the stinging plant in barren areas to make an environmentally-friendly alternative to conventional fabric and create income for farmers.

As clothes become cheaper and more disposable, the fashion industry has explored how to create clothes for rapidly growing populations while protecting the planet. The overproduction and overconsumption of fast fashion have especially come under criticism—including how eco-friendly is clothing from the chief GCA award sponsor H&M. There have also been concerns about how much energy and water clothing production consumes, besides how much industrial waste factories release into oceans, rivers and natural habitats. Environmental groups like Greenpeace have, for instance, advocated for companies to change their customers’ mindsets and to design clothes for long life.

In Africa, where there’s a nascent manufacturing and fashion industry, local designers are not just challenging reductive ideas of what makes up “African” fashion but also where to source materials from. Last year, Rwanda raised tariffs on used clothing and footwear from the US as it positions itself to become a significant exporter of clothes. Yet funding has proved critical for these designers and manufacturers, an issue creative funds like HEVA want to change.

To further support companies like Green Nettle, H&M Foundation this year partnered with crowdfunding platform Indiegogo to not only get more people to back the winners but also raise awareness about sustainable fashion worldwide.

This article was originally published on qz.com

Tourism The Beauty Of Africa : Top 8 Wildlife Safari Parks In Africa

An African safari trip is an experience of a lifetime as you get to satisfy your wanderlust in the wild and marvel at nature at her absolute finest. Each destination is as diverse as the culture and people so visitors always have a wealth of options for their adventure.

Some travelers come in for the amazing scenery, while others flock to get some outdoor action like hiking and hot air balloon rides. As such, it pays to have an idea of which locations offer what experiences you seek. If the highlight of your safari is to witness majestic wildlife in their natural habitat, however, then consider these top eight wildlife safari parks on the continent:

1. Kruger National park

This is one of the largest wildlife reserves in Africa and is located in the northeastern parts of South Africa in the province of Limpopo and Mpumalanga. The park occupies a 19,485 km square and is regarded as a world heritage site by UNESCO. The Kruger National Park is a beautiful wilderness that is home to the ‘Big Five’, as well as hundreds of mammals, including antelope, wild dog, jackal, giraffe, and Blue wildebeest.

2. Serengeti National Park

The Serengeti National Park is located in Tanzania, stretching all the way to the East Masai Mara regions in Kenya. It is a world famous safari park spanning over the 30,000km square with an unparalleled panorama of vast rolling plains. The Serengeti boasts a variety of wildlife including the famous ‘Big five’ – Lions, African leopard, African bush elephant, eastern black rhinoceros and African buffalo. There are over 500 species of birds and carnivores like cheetah, hyena, honey badger, and African wild dogs.

One unique feature and a must-see for every tourist is the annual migration of wildebeest. Over 2.5 million wildebeest, zebras, Thomson’s gazelle, and antelopes migrate here between June and November to find better grazing. This phenomenon has been categorized as a world wonder.

3. Hwange National Park

Formerly known as Wankie game reserve, Hwange National Park is the largest wildlife reserve in Zimbabwe today. The park spans an impressive 14,651 km square and was named after a local Nhanzwa chief. It became a national park in 1961 and is located in the northwestern part of Zimbabwe between Bulawayo and Victoria Falls. Hwange offers an amazing variety of wildlife, such as impalas, African buffaloes, lions, as well as one of the largest population of elephants on the planet, and more than 400 bird species.

4. Masai Mara National Reserve

Recently ranked as the number one Safari Park on the planet by World Travel Award(WTA), the Masai Mara Game Reserve is indeed a wonder to behold. It is located in the southwest of Kenya, running along the Tanzanian border and occupying a 1,510 km square area. The park is named in honor of the famous Masai tribe and is famous for its exceptional variety of wildlife including the ‘big five’ and the Great Wildebeest Migration.

5. Chobe National Park

This breathtaking wildlife park is located in the northern parts of Botswana. It is the first national park in the country and third largest park after Kalahari and Gemsbok national parks. Covering up to 12,000km square of land, Chobe National Park plays host to concentrations of diverse wildlife including lions, giraffes, antelopes, cheetahs, zebras, wildebeest and over 450 species of bird. The Park is divided into four areas: The Serondela area, the Savuti march, the Linyanti March, and Hinterland.

6. Kibale National Forest Park

Kibale forest national park is located in western Uganda and spans across 776 km square. It is regarded as having the highest concentration of primates in all of Africa because of its impressive array of chimpanzees, red colobus monkeys, and L’Hoest’s monkeys, as well as other endangered species. Visitors here will also be amazed by the lush rainforest and scenic landscapes.

7. Etosha National Park

Located in the northwest region of Namibia, Etosha National Park covers more than 20,000km square and is famous for its ease in spotting varieties of wildlife. Unlike other African safaris where you have to drive round to see the animals, the animals at Etosha national park usually come to you. Simply park your vehicle near one of the many water holes and enjoy viewing animals in their hundreds — lions, elephants, gemsbok, springbok and various bird species.

8. Luangwa National Park

Several wildlife enthusiasts have dubbed Luangwa National Park as one of the greatest wildlife sanctuaries in the world. This is because the concentration of animals around the Luangwa River and oxbow lagoons is among the most intense in Africa. The park is situated in the eastern part of Zambia and covers 9,050 km square area. The river is filled with hippos and crocodiles, while the land supports over 60 species of mammal, including Thornicroft giraffe, cape buffaloes, elephants, and leopards. It also supports a large population of bird species.

Article culled from africa.com

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