Handy Traveler Information About The Kingdom Of Swaziland

Swaziland is a geographically small country of just above one million inhabitants. It is located in the southern hemisphere in what is known in geopolitical terms as southern Africa. The Kingdom of Swaziland, as it is officially known, is one of the last four remaining monarchies in Africa. Its only neighbors are south Africa and Mozambique. It is a country of relative political stability. In recent years, Swaziland has increasingly faced economic challenges which have often resulted in political tensions.

In terms of tourism, the country is a relatively popular tourist destination. International travelers from as far as Switzerland, United States, Australia and the UK visit the country every year. This small nation has been immortalized by the famous annual reed dance, a cultural activity involving thousands of young women. This event has over the years attracted a lot of travelers to Swaziland.

Perhaps the first things to be aware of is how does one gate to Swaziland. International travelers to Swaziland often travel by air. Currently, there are no direct commercial flights to this Kingdom nation. It is usually the case that tourists travel first to Johannesburg, South Africa by air and then connect for the last leg to Swaziland. There is only one airport in the country called Matsapha International Airport. This is a small airport which only caters for very small jets. Plans are afoot but seem delayed to complete a new airport to handle bigger aircraft such as the Boeing 747.

Most countries particularly those with a history of sending many tourists such as the ones mentioned above do not require a visa to enter Swaziland. This applies for stays not exceeding 30 days. This is often long enough for many tourists to explore this small Kingdom with no difficulties. Once in Swaziland, many tourists find accommodation in the Ezwilini Valley. This is found near the capital Mbabane and is somewhat located at the center of the country. The Ezwilini Valley is also special because of its often unique weather, great views of mountains and the lush valley itself and affordable accommodation.

Once in the Valley, there are many activities to do. Some of the things to do include visiting the cultural village, the candle making factory, the glass making factory and historical shrines. Some attractions involve travel distance away from the Valley. All in all, with determination it is easy to explore the entire country in a few days. This is in light of the fact that the maximum breath of the country is some 200kms.

Apart from traveling to the country by air, it is also possible to come in by road. This happens frequently with tour buses that originate in Johannesburg. A visit to Swaziland can even be a short two day or three day visit. It takes about 3 hours to travel from Johannesburg to Mbabane by road.In many cases driving to Swaziland can prove advantageous as it will be much easier to explore the country. However, it is still not a difficult task to rent a car or to find taxes to move around once one gets on the ground. The hotels and lodges are also more than willing to help with internal travel arrangements.

What to Expect From Professional Travel Guides

Human beings are nomadic by nature. Unexplored parts of nature, natural beauty, wonders of the world have always attracted people. But the urban lifestyle is pretty demanding. Everybody is busy but still people cannot ignore the calls of the unknown and set out for different destinations around the world.

However, the world is not the same as it used to be many years ago. There are several challenges that you have to face, language problem is one of the biggest problems that most travelers face. Apart from this, rules for foreign travelers, currencies, etc. make it more difficult to explore travel destinations in other countries.

Even when you visit travel destinations in your own country, you might have to struggle to find a suitable hotel or resort around the spot. However, professional travel guides can be of immense help.

In the past, many people used to take up this as a profession. Local people who have knowledge about the locality often work as guides and help tourists to explore the place comfortably. This profession is still very popular. Travelers who visit historical places prefer to hire guides who know about the place and can take them to all the local spots and share local stories and history with them. There are places which are century old. The history of local culture, people, lifestyle, festivals etc. are kind of tribal knowledge that is only available with the local people. Travelers who are interested to know about century old civilizations always prefer to interact with travel guides. A knowledgeable guide not only helps travelers to explore the place but helps them to find hotels, book tickets, find good restaurants, etc. There are people who love to explore everything on their own, but that is a different trait altogether. Common people prefer to hire a guide to make their vacation comfortable.

This is the era of digital age. Everything is getting digitized. At present, when someone says travel guides, he means online guides that offer every bit of information for a travel destination. Different forms of online tourist guide are given below:

1] Travel portals: There are many travel portals that feature world wide destinations. If you are planning to visit a place, you can search for a travel portal that has all the information about your destination. From cab booking, transportation to hotel booking, these online tourist guides can provide you all the information that you might need. You can search and find such portals. Some travel portals offer information about specific regions only whereas some cover all the destinations round the globe.

2] e-Brochures: If you are planning your trip through a travel agency, they can offer you online brochures that contain extensive resources and information about the destination you intend to visit. It is not that all travel agencies would give such brochure out, but some will. You can consult these brochures to find restaurants, local attractions, transportation facilities, etc. These books are great to consult when you plan a trip to somewhere.

Using Travel Guides to Your Benefit

When it comes to travelling; basically there are two kinds of people. The first kind plans their entire vacation right from the time they leave their house to the time they return whereas the others just go to the place, book themselves into a hotel and then decide what to do.

But, if you’re planning on visiting a new city there are plenty of travel guides that would be able to help you plan your vacation; however, there are plenty of people waiting to mint cash from you and therefore make sure that you only buy official travel guides as they’d have everything you need to know.

Use the travel guide to plan

One of the best ways of using the travel guide is by flipping through the pages of the brochure, check out the places you would love to visit and write them down on a separate piece of paper or on your phone.

Once that’s done you could then begin your journey by visiting the places in order based on their proximity to each other. As far as possible hire a professional travel guide so that they would help you reach all those places in the least amount of time – else you’d be travelling in circles.

Also, while you’re travelling from a place to the next, you could use your smartphone or laptop to check out what you could do in the area, usually you’d find a lot of interesting articles on each place you visit.

Find out about dangers using the guide

There are also times when you need to be careful about visiting a few places and your travel guide would point those out as well. You may find a mountain range really beautiful and plan a hiking trip, but the time of the year that you’re visiting could be avalanche season – so, make sure that you read the guide thoroughly before you plan.

Use them to learn about the place

Your travel guide is probably a comprehensive book and it would contain a lot of information on each and every place mentioned. Using the book you would be able to check out the history of the place as well as it’s cultures and traditions.

If you’re lucky, a bit of the ancient culture could still be alive in some parts of the city and if you’re interested you could ask your travel guide to take you to that part of town.

A travel guide isn’t a book, it’s basically just a kind of glossary that gives you information that you would find when you scratch the surface. If you’re looking forward to having a true adventure, you would need to conduct your very own research on the particular heritage site, garden or just about any place you visit within a city.

They prevent you from being cheated

When you use a travel guide, it would also include the fares that you would need to pay your tour guide as well as taxi driver to drive you from one place to the next. Usually when you’re travelling to foreign countries, you would notice that the locals try to loot you as they consider tourists to be rich.

Hence, just by following the tour guide and using government services as outlined in the guide, you would be able to enjoy your visit, whilst at the same time save cash.