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  • Writer's pictureAlyssa Patuel

Why Africa?

Do you really need a reason to travel? It's more like an excuse, right? I've always wanted to explore the world in a way that involves truly experiencing it, getting to know places, people, and absorbing everything this world has to offer.

Growing up in South Africa, I was fortunate enough to travel around the country. I was born in Johannesburg (Joburg), and as young children, our parents took us on incredible overland trips to places like the Transkei, Mozambique, the Kalahari, Namibia, Sodwana, just to name a few... At some point during my adolescence, we moved to Knysna, I attended boarding school in George, and we spent my summer holidays in Ballito visiting my grandparents, so it's fair to say I got around.

I left South Africa in 2013 for Vancouver, Canada. I didn't know it then, but I was looking to start a life in a country where I'd feel safe and could be independent. I built my career, fell in love with the outdoors, made incredible friends, and found my soulmate.

I love South Africa and have always felt at home in Africa, but I recognized the challenges of starting a life here. It's fair to say I grew up sheltered and very aware of my privilege. While 1 in 5 people in South Africa live in extreme poverty, 30% of the country are unemployed. It's extremely difficult for people to break the cycle of poverty. But South Africa/Africa is so much more than a poor country, contrary to what the media portrays.

It is rich! Rich in culture, people, and landscapes. It's so hard to explain to people why this magical place is home. I can't wait to share this with my Irish partner, Sean. We've bought a Defender and will be going on adventures across Africa, experiencing as much as we can until we run out of money.

Feel free to follow along, ask questions, and share advice!

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