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  • Here you’ll find all of my posts about Africa travel. At the moment, there are just a few, but more will follow, I’m sure! These aren’t big general “ultimate list” or “everything you need to know” posts. Instead, each one focuses on just one or a few sights or experiences from my specific point of view.

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The stained glass window above the entrance to Livingstonia church

Livingstonia: a glimpse of Malawi’s colonial past

Perched high on an escarpment overlooking Lake Malawi, Livingstonia was established by missionaries from the Free Church of Scotland back in 1894. The story goes that they tried several times to establish missions down on the shore of the lake, but kept losing missionaries to malaria until they moved up the escarpment to higher, less…

our elephant, in Nyika National Park in Malawi (photo courtesy of Anne Hellersmith)

Malawi’s Nyika National Park

Nyika Plateau, a little-known park in the north of Malawi, is one of my favorite places in the world—and I’ve seen a lot of the world. In terms of landscape, Nyika is often compared with Scotland: gently rolling hills covered with grasses—green in the rainy season, brown in the dry season—as far as the eye…

Manacles were used to chain the ankles of two slaves together. Badagry, Nigeria

Badagry, Nigeria’s slave trade history

While I was in Lagos for work, I took an extra day to visit Badagry, Nigeria. This town on the east side of Lagos was the “Point of No Return” in the Nigerian slave trade for 400 years. It is now home to three museums about the Badagry slave trade and Badagry history. We were…

makeshift market stalls along the road in Lagos, Nigeria

Driving through Lagos, Nigeria

I did a lot of driving on my recent visit to Lagos, Nigeria. Or rather, I did a lot of being driven. Lagos isn’t your usual tourist destination and, indeed, I didn’t go there as a tourist. I had agreed to lead a workshop at an International Baccalaureate school for two days. If I was…