Ghana is listed!

BY: Kofi Akpabli
Ghana is a tourism destination
Ghana is a tourism destination

A comprehensive marketing budget for a destination such as Ghana is so big that it discourages our authorities from taking bold steps.

It is thus a windfall when unexpectedly an endorsement comes from very credible sources.

Global Cable News Network (CNN) has listed Egypt and Ghana among the list of the choice tourism places to visit in 2021.

An assembly of mostly blockbuster destinations that they think are going to be high on tourists’ travel wish lists.

I must warn though that some of these destinations may remain off limits for some time to come and that embarking on a trip right away may not be advisable.

These are the solid-gold vacation hits that everyone needs right now.

But before we get to Ghana, and what they said about us, lets learn about all these other places.

Let's start with this mysterious place. With the cancellation of the 2020-2021 Antarctic cruise season, there is a lot of pent-up desire to make these big travel dreams come true.

Antarctica is one of the most remote destinations on the planet; it is not an easy (or affordable) endeavour under the best circumstances.
Perhaps the difficulty is part of the allure — the seventh continent remains on the top of many travellers’ wish lists.

The striking white desert, with its dramatic, snowy peaks and vibrant turquoise waters, as well its exotic wildlife, including Emperor penguins and Weddell seals, is truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Do you wanna go?

Skiing, surfing, hiking, polar-bear spotting and Northern-lights sighting.

Eclectic cuisine, world-class shopping, a diverse and rich culture.

This is Canada. Nature lovers take solace in mountains, glaciers, waterfalls and Atlantic or Pacific coastlines while sophisticated palates nosh at Michelin-starred restaurants and hole-in-the-wall mainstays alike.

Nightlife seekers will find vibrant club scenes in Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver, though smaller cities Edmonton and Calgary know how to play too.

The laid-back visitor has a bevy of chill choices, among them Tofino, Canada’s original hippie destination; Kelowna, a picturesque lakeside wine country; and St John’s, one of the country’s friendliest places.

While vacation planning for 2021 can seem like a wild roll of the dice, a trip to Dubai is a safer bet than most.

The glitziest of the United Arab Emirates is currently welcoming almost all global travellers and, with the emirate embracing thorough safety checks and protocols, you can enjoy relative peace of mind while you’re there too.

The long-awaited Expo 2020 Dubai has been rescheduled for October 2021 through March 2022.

Also expected next year is the opening of the grandly named Museum of the Future, the calligraphy-adorned facade of which is already an impressive new landmark in a city known for its buildings with a wow factor.

Egypt’s supply of ancient wonders is seemingly limitless, and 2021 may be just the year to show them all off to a world starved for cultural discovery.

Many of Egypt’s most celebrated artifacts are finally expected to get a gleaming new home this year at the Grand Egyptian Museum (GEM) close to the site of the Pyramids of Giza.

While the opening date has not been set, the long-delayed museum is sure to be a huge draw.

A headliner: King Tutankhamun’s treasures will all be exhibited together for the first time.

A number of sarcophagi from Saqqara — newly discovered in 2020 — will be transferred to the GEM, as will wooden coffins found in Luxor in 2019.

The bistros, boulangeries, patisseries and fromageries (I forgot the croissant!) are reason enough to hotfoot it to France when the world starts moving in earnest.

And the rest of the things that drew nearly 90 million visitors to France in 2019 will start coming to life again too: world-class art exhibitions, elegant chateaux, towering cathedrals, medieval villages, glamorous stretches of coast and endless tangles of wine-producing vines.

For a regal, live-it-up kind of stay, Le Grand Contrôle — a historic hotel in the heart of the Château de Versailles with an Alain Ducasse restaurant and indoor swimming pool — is set to open to guests in 2021. — Marnie Hunter

If we do make it back to normality in 2021, Greece will have more reason than most to celebrate.

This country is marking its 200th birthday.

The official anniversary of when an 1821 revolution sparked a war of independence against the Ottoman Empire is in February to March, but parties and events to mark the bicentennial are expected — COVID-19 permitting — throughout the year.

The charming port of Nafplio, in the Peloponnese region southwest of Athens, is as good a place as any to join in the celebrations - it was modern Greece’s first capital.

While a slow return to normal might make previously over-visited places such as Santorini worth a look in 2021, there’s no loss in playing it safe with a quieter option, like the island of Milos in the Cyclades — a plane or ferry hop from Athens.

This volcanic playground has a beach for every day of the month, with more than a few to spare.

While Grenada’s nickname comes from its famous nutmeg industry, the “Isle of Spice” is packed with flavour in every way possible.

Measuring just 18 kilometres wide and 34 kilometres long, the eastern Caribbean island is made up of sandy beaches, lush rainforests and spectacular waterfalls, but it is Grenada’s rich character that sets it apart from more well-known tropical destinations.

Grenada’s capital St George is known for its horseshoe-shaped harbour and colourful houses.

The island has around 45 beaches, but Grand Anse is its most popular for good reason. Spanning three kilometres.

This stunning stretch of white sand frequented by both visitors and locals offers tranquil waters, fantastic views and a wonderfully serene atmosphere.

Hawaii is underrated. This in spite of its unceasing popularity among travellers.

To be sure, it is a gorgeous place, with breathtaking sunrises and sunsets, and every beach seemingly prettier than the next, its beauty goes much deeper than its preternatural appearance.

Extraordinary beaches — some even boast black and green sand!

On the island, a must-see is Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, where a spectacular new eruption of Kilauea has recently drawn visitors.

No matter which island you choose, which beachfront accommodation or which adventure, the key is slowing down and inviting the Aloha vibes to take over.

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