With its formidable landscapes and abundant wildlife, it is no surprise that Southern Africa is one of the most popular travel destinations in the world.
Home of the great Victoria Falls, the Serengeti Plains, Mount Kilimanjaro, the Kruger National Park, Gorilla Safaris, the Okavango Delta, and the world’s highest sand dunes of Sossusvlei, Southern Africa is a paradise for those who love nature, wildlife and the great outdoors, and in order to protect its treasures from the latest health threat – Ebola, some countries in Southern African are closing down their borders.
Before you get alarmed, these countries are only closing their boarders to travellers coming from Ebola infected areas, namely Guinea, Sierra Leone, Nigeria and Liberia, so unless you intend to pass through these countries before heading to Southern Africa (which is not recommended) – you will not face any problems at the border at all.
Botswana, Zambia, and Kenya have already imposed restrictions on their borders, and anyone who has travelled through the high-risk countries of West Africa will be denied entry and may be subject to quarantine. Other Southern African countries such as Uganda and Tanzania are screening passengers travelling from Ebola infected countries, but purely as a preventative measure.
With so much propaganda flying around and scaremongering going on, many international travellers are unsure if they should be travelling to Southern Africa or not, but the fact is, Ebola has been around for years, you can only catch Ebola from the bodily fluids of an infected person, it is not airborne, nor is it transmitted through food and water contamination, and unless you intend to visit the infected countries of West Africa, the chances of you catching it are extremely slim.
Dr Stephan Monroe of the US Centres for Disease Control said that, “the likelihood of the outbreak spreading outside West Africa was very low”, and the World Health Organisation (WHO) has not recommended any travel or trade restrictions for Southern Africa.
The countries of Southern Africa need your tourism now more than ever, and with all these preventative measures in place, you could be safer in Southern Africa that you are anywhere else in the world!