24 May 2024

Cape Town: Flying Dutchman Funicular is currently non-operational! [update]

update (24 May 2024): Power has been restored and the Flying Dutchman Funicular is back up and running!

The Motsamayi Tourism Group, which manages the facilities at Cape Point in the Cape of Good Hope section of Table Mountain National Park in Cape Town, has announced that they are currently experiencing a power failure at Cape Point due to cable theft. This means that the Flying Dutchman Funicular is currently non-operational. We'll keep you posted!

The Flying Dutchman Funicular, also known as Cape Point Furnicular, runs between the Cape Point parking area and the viewing point below the lighthouse. The track is 585m long, and rises 87m from the lower station (at 127m  m a.s.l) to the upper station (at 214m m a.s.l). The Flying Dutchman Funicular was the first commercial funicular of its kind in Africa.

Addo Elephant National Park: Temporary closure of Zuurberg hiking trails!

South African National Parks (SANParks) has announced that the two hiking trails in the Zuurberg section of Addo Elephant National Park, the Cycad Trail and the Doringnek Trail, have been temporarily closed due to wet and muddy conditions after overnight rain.
The Zuurberg Mountains are located in the northern part of Addo Elephant National Park. The area is characterized by rugged mountain terrain, deep valleys, and expansive plateaus. It forms part of the Cape Fold Belt, which is known for its unique geological formations. Wildlife in this section includes various mammals such as baboons, bushbuck, kudu, and mountain reedbuck. Predators like leopards are also present but are more elusive. The Zuurberg section is notable for its rich plant diversity. It includes ancient cycads, proteas, and a range of endemic and rare plant species. The fynbos vegetation, in particular, is a key feature of the landscape.
The Cycad Trail is a 2 kilometers hiking trail, while the Doringnek Trail is a circular route approximately 8 kilometers long.

eSwatini: Total ban on all single-use plastic carrier bags!

The Kingdom of eSwatini is set to introduce a total ban on all single-use plastic carrier bags. According to a press statement by the Ministry of Tourism and Environmental Affairs issued on 22 May 2024, the ban becomes effective 01 December 2024 from the issuance of a Government gazette. Under the terms of the ban, all retailers, supermarkets, manufacturers and vendors in eSwatini will be prohibited from selling or providing for free single-use plastic shopping bags to customers. This encompasses bags made from traditional plastic materials, including polyethylene and polypropylene, regardless of thickness. Customers are encouraged to make use of reusable alternatives such as cloth bags, paper bags or durable tote bags.

In exercise of the powers conferred under Section 89 of the Environmental Management Act, 2002, the Minister of Tourism and Environment[al] Affairs through Legal Notice No. 155 of 21 May 2021, published the Control of Plastic Bags Regulations to regulate the production, importation and use of plastic bags; promote the reuse, recycling, and safe handling of plastic bags; and ultimately ban production, importation and use of plastic bags in Eswatini.
Pursuant to Regulation 14 of the Control of Plastic Bags Regulations, 2021 and a landmark decision aimed at combating environmental degradation and promoting sustainable practices, His Majesty’s government today announces a total ban on all single-use plastic carrier bags. [...]

Namibia introduces entry visa requirements for countries it has no reciprocal visa arrangements with!

According to news reports from Namibia, the Governemt of the southern African country is set to introduce entry visa requirements for countries that have no reciprocal visa arrangements with Namibia. The proposal, which was submitted by the Namibian Minister of Home Affairs, Immigration, Safety and Security, has already been approved by the Cabinet. This was announced by the Deputy Minister of Information and Communication Technology, Modestus Amutse, during the presentation of the cabinet decisions on 23 May 2024. We'll keep you posted!

23 May 2024

Zambia: Mfuwe International Airport (MFU) gets an upgrade!

The Zambia Airports Corporation Limited (ZACL) has announced that Mfuwe International Airport (MFU), which serves the tourism industry based on the nearby South Luangwa National Park and other wildlife areas in the Luangwa Valley, will undergo a period of rehabilitation, commencing on 13 June 2024. The scope of work will comprise rehabilitation of the runway, taxiway and apron pavements, upgrade of the airfield ground lighting (AGL) system to replace the current one which is obsolete, re-construction of the inner perimeter fence, and extension of the terminal building. The upgrade of the airport is expected to take 90 days.
The Zambia Airports Corporation Limited (ZACL) initially planed to close Mfuwe International Airport (MFU) during the rehabilitation period, but the Government of Zambia has directed the ZACL to ensure that the airport remains open as works are being undertaken to improve the infrastructure. According to the Zambian Minister of Transport and Logistics, Frank Tayali, the Government is of the view that the closure of the Mfuwe international Airport (MFU) will cause serious disruptions especially during this peak period in the tourism industry.

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Zambia: Zambia Airways to launch flights to Mfuwe! >>

South Africa introduces a new remote working visa!

The Government of South Africa has introduced a new remote working visa. The amendments to the country's immigration regulations were gazetted on 20 May 2024. The new visa, which is introduced as a species of visitors visa, allows foreigners to work remotely for a foreign employer while residing in South Africa. However, applicants for the new remote working visa must have an annual income of at least R1 million [approx. GBP43 000 | €50 000 | USD 54 000]. If the new visa is issued for a period not exceeding six months, the foreigner may apply to be exempted by the South African Revenue Services (SARS) from registering as a taxpayer. If the remote working visa is issued for a period longer than six months within a 36-month period, the foreigner must register with SARS.

Malawi: Malawi Airlines increases flights between Lilongwe <> Nairobi!

The flag carrier of Malawi, Malawi Airlines, has announced the introduction of a fourth weekly service to Kenya. The airline will add a flight on Sundays to its current schedule between Kamuzu International Airport (LLW) in Lilongwe and Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (NBO) in Kenya's capital Nairobi. The additonal service will commence on 02 June 2024. Malawi Airlines currently operates three weekly return flights between Lilongwe and Nairobi on Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays.

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