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Digital Subscriptions > Travel Africa > April-June 2018 (82) > GOOD TIMES IN HARARE

GOOD TIMES IN HARARE

If you like art, food, shopping and nature, you’ll find the buzzing Zimbabwean capital to be a great starting point for your trip or a destination in its own right.

Business is low and slow but we now have high hopes for our future”, beams Leon Suragi, a stone and metal craftsman plying his trade at a popular curio market along Enterprise Road, one of Harare’s main arteries. Sporting a clean but frayed shirt emblazoned with ‘I am Zimbo’ and exuding an air of determined confidence, Suragi neatly encapsulates the prevalent atmosphere in Zimbabwe’s capital: one of cautious optimism.

“Things have definitely improved this year, people are spending more money because they are happier with the current situation.

This is the way it must be for the future to get better”, says Moses Sigauke, who sells his handmade teak frames, chopping boards and jewellery boxes at a farmers’ market frequented by diplomats and tourists. Although the ‘new dispensation’ seems to be making all the right strides in the direction of a positive future for Zimbabwe its citizens have seen it all before and so some are reluctant to be drawn into possibly more false hope. However, there is no doubting that Zimbabwe in a post-Mugabe era has the potential to reinstate itself as not only the breadbasket of Africa but one of its tourism hubs.

Regardless of the country’s political landscape, Harare has myriad experiences on offer that will appeal to the varied tastes of any visitor and is the perfect springboard to launch a foray into the more remote and wilder areas of the country. The adrenaline capital of Victoria Falls can be accessed from Harare by daily flights and from there a road transfer of a few hours will get you into the wilds of Hwange National Park. The lost Eden of Mana Pools is only a five-hour journey from Harare for the more adventurous self-drive travellers and can also be accessed through several air charter companies. You can hop to the south of the country and the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Matobo Hills via Zimbabwe’s second city, Bulawayo — the City of Kings — on regular flights from Harare.

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