CHINESE NEW YEAR NIGHT PARADE | mountain gorilla feeding


Thirteen festive floats as well as 22 international and local performing troupes will take part in this year’s Chinese New Year Night Parade. The Hong Kong Tourism Board (HKTB) has installed more decorations along the route in a bid to transform the streets of Tsim Sha Tsui into a big playground, allowing local residents and tourists the opportunity to experience the festive New Year atmosphere.

Organized by the Hong Kong Tourism Board, the Cathay Pacific International Chinese New Year Night Parade will be held on the first day of the Chinese New Year (February 8) in Tsim Sha Tsui. This will be the 21st staging and the theme will be “Playground of the World – Party of the Year.”

To allow more international visitors to experience the bustling and exciting atmosphere of the Chinese New Year, the HKTB will share the festivities with major international news and wire agencies. Additionally, the HKTB has for the first time invited a presenter from the BBC to board the HKTB parade float to experience and report on the parade first hand. The HKTB will also be co-operating with various trade partners to target short- and long-haul markets including Mainland China, Taiwan, South Korea and Canada to promote Hong Kong Chinese New Year themed tours and attract more visitors to spend their time in Hong Kong over the New Year.

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“A unique feature of Agribusiness Congress East 2016 conference is the roundtable discussions between the representatives of the public and private sector, presenting each industry with its own challenges and requirements in an interactive Business to Business (B2B) intimate dialogue,” Melisa Bender, the  Agribusiness East Africa Marketing Manager said last week.

The Congress scheduled for January 27-28 offers a platform for investors, the donor community, input suppliers, government, farmers of all scales and all professionals involved in the agricultural value chain, looking for sustainable cost effective solutions, trade partners and opportunities that will set East Africa into an agricultural hub.

Bender said participants will discuss strategic plans relating to regional growth, market accessibilities in the East African agricultural corridors and share best practices to overcome the critical impacts of climate change within the region.

She said the Agricultural Council of Tanzania (ACT) is hosting the third annual Agribusiness Congress East Africa under the theme, ‘Driving regional growth and accessibility in East Africa’.

She said discussions will focus on enabling frameworks for land reform, accessing finance and identifying investment partners, modernising smallholder farming, Climate actions and post-harvest loss, processing and storing transport logistics, market access and trading.

Both an indoor and outdoor exhibitions are featured where visitors will meet industry experts to discuss specific business needs and view the latest products and services available to the global agri-market.

During the Congress, the German export Association for Food and Agriproducts (GEFA) will once again return as a coordinating partner and bring onboard the representation of Grimme, Mastermind, Pottinger and Vedastat as featured exhibitors.

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ETHIOPIAN AIRLINES RETURN TO NEW YORK | Gorilla trekking in volcano Rwanda


Ethiopian Airlines yesterday confirmed their intended return to New York, from where they withdrew in 2004 in favor of flights to Washington DC at the time. The flights will commence by the end of June this year but unlike 12 years ago use JFK instead of Newark.

The initially three times a week flights from Addis Ababa – leaving there every Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday – will route via Lome and will be operated in conjunction with ET’s partner airline in Togo, ASKY.

The one stop service will use a Boeing B787, offering 24 seats in business class and 246 seats in economy class and also offer cargo space in both directions.

New York will be Ethiopian’s third destination in the US after Washington DC and the more recently launched flights to Los Angeles, which route via Dublin in Ireland.

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CONSERVATION GROUP LASHED OUT | Gorilla trekking in volcano Rwanda


One of Kenya’s most respected conservation groups, the Northern Rangelands Trust, has apparently come into the cross hairs of loose cannon county officials from Turkana, who have reportedly told them to pack their bags and get out of the county for allegedly not being registered.

It is understood from other sources that Turkana elders were involved last year in the discussions to set up conservancies and that staff were already recruited by NRT towards making the new conservation areas operational. This follows two oil companies and the Northern Rangelands Trust signing a Memorandum of Understanding in late October last year as was also reported here.

Some of the new conservation areas are located in the West Pokot County and no objections have been received from there, singling out Turkana county and suggesting considerable ill will by officials if not an outright ulterior motive for their actions.

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Food and beverage are a crucial part of the traveler experience, and travelers are always seeking the next greatest food and beverage businesses, destinations and experiences.

One hundred percent of visitors to a destination must eat and drink. They can return home with memories of a chain hamburger and coffee, or they can return with memories of fantastic local food and drink experiences. They just need help identifying and even recognizing those experiences.

The 2016 FoodTrekking Awards is the world’s first global competition for recognition of excellence in food and beverage experiences for travelers.


Categories in this year’s competition include:
1. Best food or beverage destination
2. Best winery experience
3. Best beer experience
4. Best food or beverage tour operator
5. Best foodservice experience for travelers

There will be one grand prize, a second, and third prize for each category (15 winners total this year). In addition to a physical prize, winners will receive tremendous global recognition for an entire year, and will be announced in the World Food Travel Association’s newsletter (24,000 readers), its Founder’s Blog, and on social media groups (13,000 followers), as well as in a dedicated press release to our curated in-house media list.

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BAHRAIN’S NATIONAL CARRIER | gorilla trekking company


As part of its fleet renewal strategy, Gulf Air has announced a firm order of 29 A320neo Family. The new order includes 17 A321neo and 12 A320neo of which 10 A320neo have been confirmed in 2012. The contract was signed today at the Bahrain International Airshow between Mr. Maher Salman Al Musallam, A/Chief Executive Officer, Gulf Air and Fabrice Brégier, Airbus President and Chief Executive Officer, in the presence of H.E. Kamal bin Ahmed Mohammed, Minister of Transportation and Telecommunications, Kingdom of Bahrain and Mr Matthias Fekl, Minister of State for Foreign Trade, the Promotion of Tourism and French Nationals Abroad.

Gulf Air currently operates 28 Airbus aircraft; and the new aircraft will fit seamlessly into the airline’s current fleet, thanks to Airbus’ overall fleet commonality, its low operating costs, optimum fuel efficiency and best-in-class passenger comfort of any single aisle aircraft.

Commenting on the agreement, Gulf Air A/Chief Executive Officer Mr. Maher Salman Al Musallam, said, “I am delighted that we will enhance and simplify our fleet structure building on Airbus aircraft. This restructured order meets Gulf Air’s future fleet requirement and our network expansion plans. As a result, I now look forward to furthering Gulf Air’s fleet modernization process while supporting our network and overall passenger experience enhancement strategies.”

The A320neo Family incorporates latest technologies including new generation engines and Sharklet wing tip devices, which together deliver more than 15 percent in fuel savings from day one and 20 percent by 2020 with further cabin innovations. With nearly 4,500 orders received from some 80 customers since its launch in 2010, the A320neo Family has captured a 60 percent share of the market.

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A year older but not a shred wiser and – who knows, perhaps still tipsy from the New Year’s champagne intake – the Kenya Airline Pilots Association, in short KALPA, has once again shown that they are utterly incapable of dealing with reality. News from Nairobi suggests that the rabid union leadership has now stooped to new lows when they demanded that the management of national airline, Kenya Airways, be dissolved within seven days, or, as usual, “else,” suggesting they are spoiling for another round of slow goes and strikes by making demands way beyond their brief.

What business of a pilots’ union it is to demand such things is of course beyond most to comprehend, as they in turn, should for instance the airline demand that the pilots union leadership step down, be met with howls of hyped-up outrage. It has often been said in the past that the union’s behavior and demands are in part responsible for the substantially higher operational cost incurred by Kenya Airways, compared for instance with rival, Ethiopian, which has no such issues with troublesome militants as found in the offices of KALPA.

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FIRST HOTEL OPENING IN CHAD | gorilla safari cost


Hilton Hotels & Resorts today officially announced its first hotel in Chad, Hilton N’Djamena which takes Hilton Worldwide’s overall presence to 100 countries and territories. The 194-room property, offering breathtaking panoramic views of Chari River, is located in the new and upmarket district of Sabangali in N’Djamena. The latest addition joins Hilton Worldwide’s growing portfolio of 37 hotels in Africa.

Rob Palleschi, global head, full service brands, Hilton Worldwide, said: “Hilton Hotels & Resorts has had a presence in Africa for more than 50 years and Hilton N’Djamena is a magnificent achievement that showcases how far the brand has come in its commitment to this market.”

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EGYPT: 5 KILLED, 3 INJURED IN SINAI ATTACK | gorilla trekking company


Suspected militants have attacked a checkpoint in Egypt’s volatile Sinai Peninsula, killing five policemen.

The Interior Ministry’s media office says the attack took place at midnight on Wednesday in the city of Al-Arish and that three policemen were also wounded.

No group has so far claimed responsibility for the attack.

Egypt has been hit with a wave of suicide bombings and militants’ attacks that only intensified after the military’s ouster of President Mohammed Morsi in 2013.

Daesh affiliate has claimed responsibility for most of the attacks.

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THAI TO SELL PROPERTIES | gorilla safari cost


Thai Airways International Public Company Limited (THAI) announced the intention to sell properties in Thailand and overseas which are unused or not fully utilized, based on property management principles for the Company’s benefit.

Mr. Charamporn Jotikasthira, THAI President, said that property management is part of the Company’s transformation plan in order to reduce repair and maintenance expenses. The intention is to optimize property management since it is not part of core aviation business. THAI’s Board of Directors approved the initiative on 19 October and 28 December 2015.

The Company’s properties that are up for sale are land, office buildings, and residences for staff in Thailand and overseas that are no longer necessary or are not fully utilized. There are nine properties in Thailand that have been unused for several years, which the Company has no plans to utilize them, including: Mae Hong Son, Phitsanulok, Udon Thani, Nan, Trang, Surat Thani, Phuket, and two properties in Hat Yai.

There are 10 overseas properties including staff residences in London, Jakarta, Copenhagen, and two properties in Singapore, sales offices in Sydney, Rome, Madrid, Hong Kong, and Penang. Even though THAI continues to serve these destinations, these buildings are no longer suitable for current business operations as they are either too large or not necessary and need repair that incur expense and administration.

The management of THAI’s properties will proceed transparently based on the Company’s policy, which will begin by hiring a property assessor and realtor. Those interested in purchasing these properties will be given the opportunity to deal directly with the Company, which will take consideration to value, suitability based on market value, and the property management viewpoint.

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