Home » Tourism: From Culture To Technology, Tastes Of Africa Vibes Redefines Travel Content Creation By inspiring A New Generation of Adventurers

Tourism: From Culture To Technology, Tastes Of Africa Vibes Redefines Travel Content Creation By inspiring A New Generation of Adventurers

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African Travel Content Creators

The highly anticipated African Travel Content Creators Conference took place at the Ebonyplace, Victoria Island area of Lagos State.

This extraordinary event brought together travel content creators, bloggers, social media influencers, and industry experts from across the continent.

With the theme: “The Impact of Travel Content Creation in the Africa Tourism Industry,” the conference aimed to celebrate and explore the significant role of travel content creation in the growth and development of Africa’s vibrant tourism industry. Throughout the day, influential voices came together to discuss the transformative power of their work and the immense contributions they make to the promotion and perception of Africa’s diverse destinations.

This unprecedented gathering marked a significant milestone, offering a unique platform for African travel content creators to connect, collaborate, and learn from one another even though it felt more like a tourism family reunion.

The event commenced with an engaging lecture by Mr. Pelu Awofeso, a renowned travel writer. He captivated the audience with his insights on the value of African culture and natural attractions. Awofeso exemplified this by sharing his exploration of the Voodoo culture of the Republic of Benin, dispelling misconceptions and highlighting the beauty of their beliefs and practices. He concluded his speech by urging us to utilize the power of social media to promote our culture and travel businesses.

Next is Amb. Ikechi Uko, a pioneering figure in the field of tourism and organizer of Akwaaba African Travel Market, took the stage and delved into the power of storytelling as a formidable tool for marketing African destinations. In his captivating speech,  he summarized his insights into a five-layer story session, each with its own significance.

African Travel Content Creators

In the first story, Uko highlighted the remarkable impact of Mohamed ‘Mo’ Amin, a Kenyan photojournalist who utilized his camera to promote Kenya as a great Safari destination. Amin’s work also encompassed documenting the Ethiopian famine from 1983 to 1985. His Photograph brought $2billion dollars to Africa from the US Government. It brought about the huge Live Aid Concert. It gave us the Song ‘We are the World’s.

So powerful were his images that VP of America George Bush gave him the Pen used to sign the Bill. He was also Knighted by the Queen. But his Pictures Branded and Blighted the global image of Ethiopia as a country of poor and Starving people. A new generation of photographers led by an Ethiopian female photographer is trying to change the narratives using the same powerful tool ,a Camera.

This story underscored the potential of visual storytelling in creating awareness and inspiring change.

The second story revolved around the detrimental consequences of a singular comment made by Pat Robertson, a televangelist on CBN, who attributed Haiti’s earthquake and perpetual poverty to a supposed pact with the devil that helped Haiti defeat France.

Haiti is the first African Nation to gain independence thought by Conquest. Based in the Caribbeans they were blockaded and sanctioned by both US and France for over a hundred years which is responsible for the Poverty.

Uko emphasized that how this misguided opinion by the Televangelist led to a lack of sympathy for the Haitian people during their unfortunate tragedy. This narrative served as a cautionary tale, highlighting the responsibility of content creators to be mindful of the impact their words can have on perceptions and empathy. He also cited the Negative Branding of African Nations by media Outlets Such as BBC in the So called ‘Developmental Journalism’ where they discuss issues like Killing of Hunchbacks in Malawi, Killing of Albinos in Tanzania, Corruption in Nigeria, Female Genital Mutilation in Niger, Rape in South Africa.

The only thing other Africans remember about other Africans is the morning discussion on BBC world Service. Development Journalism as practiced by these media Stations are negative Branding for Tourism.

Uko then shifted the focus to the power of a single photograph, showcasing the captivating impact it can have on promoting a destination. He recounted the story of a picture he took at the mesmerizing Obudu Mountain Resort, capturing the entirety of its breathtaking winding road “the Intestines road’ in the year 2000. This intestine picture became the reigning picture of Obudu’ until the Chalets were built. Prior to then all Obudu pictures were of the ‘rolling hills of Obudu’.

This tale exemplified how a well-crafted image has the potential to captivate audiences and generate curiosity, effectively promoting a destination.

The next story delved into the infamous Ghana and Nigeria Jollof war, a light-hearted rivalry centered around culinary preferences. He recounted how he approached the Ghana Tourism Authority in 2016 to initiate the make-believe Rivalry as a way to draw attention to the Cuisine of West Africa and GTA agreed to play along.

Uko acknowledged the popular belief that Nigeria excels at cooking the party Jollof dish, emphasizing that this playful competition should not be taken too seriously. However, he acknowledged that despite the friendly banter, the concept of the Jollof war gained traction, went Viral and was widely accepted globally. This story shed light on the role of perception and how narratives, even in lighthearted contexts, can shape public opinion.

The final story centered around Akwa Ibom State and how the state improved it’s Tourism ranking in Nigeria using Story tellers in December 2020 and NATOP in 2021 a project between Naija7wonders and the Akwa Ibom State ministry of Tourism.

The Nigerian Association of Tour Operators (NATOP) Annual General Meeting (AGM) played a crucial role in rectifying stolen narratives for the State. Uko recounted the state’s struggle to maintain its distinct identity in the face of being overshadowed by a neighboring state. He emphasized how the true stories of Akwa Ibom State were unveiled during the NATOP AGM, reclaiming its rightful place and enabling the state to flourish in the tourism industry. This narrative underscored the importance of accurate storytelling in combating misconceptions and ensuring destinations receive the recognition they deserve.

Concluding his speech, Uko left the audience with three vital principles for success. He urged content creators to cease engaging in unproductive activities, encouraging them to “stop doing stupid things” and instead focus on actions that propel them forward. He emphasized the need to be intentional and purposeful in their endeavors, advising them to “start doing smart things.”

Lastly, Uko stressed the significance of planning for the future, acknowledging that change is inevitable and urging individuals to adapt accordingly. These three dos and don’ts provided practical guidance for content creators in their pursuit of success in the ever-evolving landscape of travel content creation.

He wrapped his speech by revealing how to replace negative narratives.” What people say about you is powerful but what you say about yourself is awesome, say good things about yourself and your destination”

Following Uko’s inspiring talk, Mr. Michael Runkel, the world’s second-most traveled person and an award-winning travel photographer, showcased his breathtaking collection of photographs taken across all the regions of the African Continent. The audience was enraptured by his stunning imagery, featured in prestigious publications such as the New York Times, National Geographic Traveller, Condé Nast Traveler, Lonely Planet, Rough Guides, Penguin Books, and more.

The stage was then taken by Valerie Masumbuko, a remarkable human rights activist, former deputy expert at the International Criminal Court, lecturer, researcher, and gender and development specialist. Masumbuko delved into the thought-provoking topic of “Language and Travel in Africa.”

She passionately discussed how the absence of a unifying language in Africa hinders travelers’ experiences. Masumbuko attributed this to the impact of colonization, which eroded our pride and identity in our local languages. She ardently advocated for the learning of one or more African languages as a means to foster unity and progress on the continent. Masumbuko left the audience with a resonating quote, “If you don’t speak their language, they will treat you like a stranger.

Continuing the lineup of exceptional speakers, Clara Chinwe Okoro took the stage. Okoro, the founder and COO of My Beautiful Africa, executive producer at Brandworld Media, chairman of the Brand Journalists Association of Nigeria (BJAN), television host, and media innovator, delivered an enlightening talk on the intersection of tourism and technology.

Titled “Tourism and Tech: The Impact of Technology on the Growth of Tourism in Africa,” Okoro emphasized the significance of utilizing virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) as powerful tools for networking, connecting, and forming partnerships within the tourism industry. She painted a vivid picture of how these innovative technologies can be harnessed to promote tourism in Africa, capturing the imagination of the audience with the endless possibilities they offer.

As the event drew to a close, Mr. Jibola Oluseye, the President/CEO of TOA Vibes, LTD – Africa Region, addressed the audience with a resounding statement. “The masquerade has finally been unveiled,” he declared passionately. “Let us go forth and spread the good news, and pride ourselves in the beauty of Africa.” These words resonated deeply, encapsulating the essence of the event and the purpose of the Taste of Africa Vibes community.

The attendees left the event inspired and energized, armed with newfound knowledge and a burning desire to share the wonders of Africa with the world. The importance of each speaker’s contribution became evident throughout the event. From appreciating and promoting African culture, leveraging the power of storytelling, showcasing stunning visuals, recognizing the significance of language, and harnessing technology for tourism growth, every paragraph conveyed a unique perspective on the importance of Africa’s rich heritage and its immense potential in the global travel industry.

The event marked a turning point, not only for the Taste of Africa Vibes community but for African travel enthusiasts worldwide. It was a catalyst for collaboration, innovation, and a renewed appreciation for the diverse and awe-inspiring destinations that Africa has to offer. The ripples of this event were bound to be felt far and wide, as the attendees, armed with their newfound knowledge and inspiration, embarked on a mission to showcase Africa’s beauty, culture, and untold stories.

And so, the members of the Taste of Africa Vibes community scattered across the continent, armed with their cameras, pens, and social media accounts, ready to amplify the voices of Africa. They embarked on adventures, seeking hidden gems, unearthing captivating stories, and sharing them with the world. Through their collective efforts, they aimed to shift perceptions, debunk stereotypes, and ignite a passion for African travel within the hearts of all who encountered their words and images.

The Taste of Africa Vibes community grew stronger, expanding its reach and impact day by day. It became a platform where African travel enthusiasts found solace, inspiration, and a supportive network of like-minded individuals. Together, they continued to celebrate Africa’s vibrancy, diversity, and rich tapestry of cultures, fostering a sense of unity and pride that transcended borders.

And as the world marveled at the taste of Africa, a symphony of colors, flavors, and rhythms, the continent welcomed explorers, wanderers, and dreamers, inviting them to experience its magic firsthand. Taste of Africa Vibes had accomplished its mission — to create a community that not only showcased the beauty of Africa but also celebrated its people, history, and untamed spirit. Through their collective efforts, they had unearthed the true essence of Africa, one that would forever leave an indelible mark on the hearts and minds of those who dared to venture into its embrace.

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