Top 5 Destinations

Thailand

Thailand is one of the most popular travel destinations in the world - Twenty years ago it was considered 'daring' to travel to Thailand. Times have certainly changed. From the majestic five-star hotels in Bangkok to simple beach huts in Koh Samui or Koh Samet, accommodation choices are many. From the stunning plains and hills of the Golden Triangle to the wave-lapped white sand beaches of Phuket, Samui and Krabi, the kingdom radiates beauty. Thailand has so much to offer that one visit is never enough – you'll want to come back and discover more time after time.

Popular Airlines

Cathay Pacific, Singapore Airlines, Emirates Airlines, Etihad Airlines, Qatar Airlines

Weather & Seasons

Thailand is relatively hot all year round, although officially it has three main seasons. In Summer (March – June), temperatures can soar above 40 degrees, particularly in the northeast and Bangkok. Thai New Year, or Songkran, falls in April, the hottest month. To relieve themselves from the heat, Thais throw water at each other during the three-day Songkran festival.

The rainy season (July – October) brings lots of downpours and heavy rainfall, usually in the late afternoons or early mornings. Temperatures are moderately high, but it can feel very uncomfortable due to high humidity level.

The most welcomed season is the cool season (November – February), which brings a relatively dry and pleasant climate. Temperatures rarely rise above 35 degrees during the day.

What to Bring

Though you will find most items in Thailand, it might be a good idea to bring certain personal items from home. Remember also to bring any medicine you are taking. Light cotton clothing is recommended in Thailand's tropical climate, as well as a pair of comfortable walking shoes. Your list should include:

  • Mosquito repellent
  • Sunscreen
  • Sun glasses
  • Foldable umbrella
  • Pain killers
  • Antiseptic lotion or spray
  • Anti-diarrhoea medication
  • Traveller's first aid kit
  • Drug prescriptions
  • Photocopies of official documents
Visa Requirements
  • Tourists from many countries (including the US, UK, Germany, France and Singapore) do not require a visa when entering Thailand and can stay for a duration of 30-days. In many of these countries (including the US, UK, Australia, Germany, France and Singapore) you can apply for a 60-day tourist visa before you leave. If you hold a Brazilian, Peruvian or South Korean passport, you are exempted from visa requirements and are permitted to enter and stay in Thailand for a period of not exceeding 90 days.
  • Citizens of some other countries are required to apply for a 15-day visa at immigration checkpoints on arrival, while others must apply for one before they leave. It all depends on the particular visa arrangement Thailand has with your home country. The best way to find out is to check with either the Thai Immigration Bureau or the Thai Embassy or Consulate in your home country.
  • Coming to Thailand for business is a whole different story. Check out the Legalities section of our Business Essentials Guide for information about the visas necessary for those looking to work or gain employment here.
International Airports

Suvarnabhumi International Airport in Bangkok is the main air gateway into Thailand. It serves more than 50 international airlines, representing every major carrier in the world. Apart from Suvarnabhumit Airport, regional airports, such as Chiang Mai International Airport, Phuket International Airport and privately owned Samui International Airport, serve a small number of direct international arrivals and departures each day.

Useful Telephone Numbers

While traveling in Thailand is fairly easy, these phone numbers might come in handy. Write them down and keep them in your wallet, for peace of mind.

  • Tourist Police 1155 (English, French and German spoken)
  • Tourist Service Center 1672
  • Telephone Directory Assistance 1133
  • Thailand Yellow Pages 1188
  • Highway Police 1193
  • Tourism Authority of Thailand 1672
  • Immigration Bureau +66 (0)2 287 3101 to 10
  • Suvarnabhumi International Airport +66 (0)2 132 1888
  • Thai Airways 1566
  • Bangkok Taxi Call Center 1681, 1661, +66 (0)2 424 2222

For emergency numbers, scroll down to Emergencies section.

Tipping

Tip porters and hotel staff if you've been given good personal service - the amount varies with the kind of hotel. In restaurants around a 10 % - 15% tip is usually the norm, but you don't need to tip in small roadside eating places. Taxi fares should be rounded up to the nearest 5 or 10 Baht, especially meter-taxis who don't earn a lot, are pretty knowledgeable and incredibly patient in the Bangkok traffic.

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South Africa

From the vineyards of the Cape to baobab-dotted Limpopo, via the Karoo and Drakensberg mountains, travel in South Africa is varied and rewarding. You could travel around South Africa in a few weeks, but it’s more satisfying to focus on a specific region.

Each of the nine provinces has compelling reasons to visit, whether that’s wildlife, beaches, culture or urban life. However, depending on the time of year and your interests, you’d be wise to concentrate on either the west or the east.

Weather & Seasons

The best time to visit South Africa depends on where you want to go and your interests. The west is best visited in the warmer months (November to April), while the eastern flank of the country is ideal in the cooler months (May to October).

Peak season is from December to January and at Easter, when prices soar and accommodation is booked up months in advance, especially along the coast and around national parks. If you’re travelling to South Africa for its iconic creatures, spring is best for whale-spotting while autumn onwards is perfect for wildlife-watching.
June to August is rainy season in Cape Town and the Western Cape, though prices are low and these are great months to visit South Africa’s arid areas, like the Karoo.

Popular Airlines

British Airways, Virgin Airways, South African Airways, Emirates Airlines, Etihad Airlines, Qatar Airlines

Visa Requirements

Citizens of the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Argentina, Brazil and most European countries do not need a visa for trips to South Africa of up to 90 days. The exceptions being citizens from Bulgaria, Croatia, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia, who need to obtain one at a South African diplomatic mission in their home country. Everyone who visits South Africa needs a valid passport and proof of a return ticket (or onward travel documents) and a bank statement showing sufficient funds to cover their stay. Though rare, immigration officers do on occasion ask to see these documents. If you are planning to travel to South Africa alone with a child, you must obtain a notarized document certifying both parents’ permission. All children travelling to South Africa will be expected to show an unabridged (full) birth certificate.

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Zanzibar

Zanzibar Island, is the main island in the Tanzanian archipelago of Zanzibar. Stone Town, part of Zanzibar City, is an old trade center, with mosques and winding lanes. The 1883 House of Wonders is a former sultan’s palace with a clock tower. The Old Fort now houses a cultural center and a stone amphitheater. Underground aqueducts fed hot water to the late-19th-century Hamamni Persian Baths.

Visa Requirements

You can get in Tanzania a visa on arrival, which means, that you don’t need to apply for it in advance. Although you can if you want. Once you arrive at the airport, just head to the immigration office with 50$ and 2 id pictures. 

Language

The main language in Zanzibar is Swahili, however, English is their second language so most of the people can speak English there.

Currency

The currency in Tanzania is the Tanzanian Shilling. There is only ATM in Stone Town so we would recommend you to withdraw enough money for all your stay in Zanzibar island, otherwise, you might run out of money and most of the places won’t take cash

Medical Advisory

Also, there is Malaria in Zanzibar and some other diseases you need to check ahead. In terms of vaccinations, you must have the yellow fever vaccine to get into the country and have with you your vaccination log.

You should seek medical advice on vaccinations and any other advice a professional can provide you with. As it is a dengue area, we recommend you to have mosquito repellent with a high concentration of DEET. It is important that you have good travel insurance when traveling to these countries to have all the travel essentials covered.

What to pack

Zanzibar is a very hot and humid place. The average temperature is around 29 degrees, and it gets only a little bit colder at night. Try to pack light and breathable clothes. We love to take less but good, this is kind of shirts we take to warm places and they last forever. 

As it is a Malaria zone, take with you a mosquito repellent with at least 50% DEET and make sure you apply it mostly at dawn and sunset, as those are the most dangerous hours.

How to move around

There are two different ways to move around in Zanzibar, one is by taxi, and the other option is by Dalla Dalla. We chose a taxi most of the time since is much faster and convenient

  • Taxi: Most of the taxis don’t have a taximeter so you will have to negotiate the price with the driver (try to. For safety reasons, ensure the taxi you are taking has the license and that the license belongs to the driver. We heard some cases in which tourists have taken pirate taxis and ended up scammed or worst.

  • Dalla Dalla: Is public transport and how the locals move around by. They are like small buses that get really packed at peak hours and they don’t have aircon. They are much cheaper than taxis but probably less comfortable and does not have much room even for a backpack

You can also fly from Dar es Salam to Zanzibar.

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Mauritius

Lying 800km east of Madagascar, Mauritius is part of the Mascarene Islands, a volcanic chain extending as far as the Seychelles. Fringed by 160km of sandy beaches and an azure sea, with a backdrop of rugged peaks and shimmering sugar cane, this pear-shaped tropical island is a dream holiday destination. An islander once told Mark Twain that “Mauritius was made first and then heaven; and heaven was copied after Mauritius”.

What to wear

When visiting Mauritius it is advisable to take your best beach and casual wear. In the winter months (June -September), carry some light woolen clothing for the cool evenings. Please show due respect when visiting religious places. Wear appropriate clothing (and remove leather shoes and belts) when entering a religious premises.

Emergency numbers
  • Police : 999 / 112
  • Ambulance : 999 / 114
  • Fire : 995 / 115
  • Information : 150
Flights from Europe

When visiting Mauritius it is advisable to take your best beach and casual wear. In the winter months (June -September), carry some light woolen clothing for the cool evenings. Please show due respect when visiting religious places. Wear appropriate clothing (and remove leather shoes and belts) when entering a religious premises.

Working Hours

Private Sector : Monday to Friday: 8.30 am - 4.15 pm, Saturday : 9am -noon (Some offices)
Public Sector : Monday to Friday: 9 am - 4 pm, Saturday : 9 am – 1pm

Currency

The Mauritian unit of currency is the rupee (Rs), which is divided into 100 cents (c). There are coins of 5, 10, 20, 25, 50 cents, and of 1, 5 and 10 Rupees (Rs). The bank note denominations are in 25, 50, 100, 200, 500, 1000 and 2000 rupees.

Shopping

Shopping hours in the main cities ranges from 9.30 am to 7.30 pm (Monday-Saturday). Some shops are open till noon on Sundays and public holidays. Many duty free shops and modern shopping centers (Caudan, Curepipe, Floréal Square, Happy World House, Orchard Centre) offer a wide choice of products.

Popular Airlines

Air Austral, KLM, South African Airways, Emirates Airlines, Etihad Airlines, Qatar Airlines, Turkish Airways, Kenya Airways, Lufthansa Airways

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Europe

Europe is a continent located entirely in the Northern Hemisphere and mostly in the Eastern Hemisphere. It comprises the westernmost part of Eurasia and is bordered by the Arctic Ocean to the north, the Atlantic Ocean to the west, the Mediterranean Sea to the south, and Asia to the east.

Climate

Europe lies mainly in the temperate climate zones, being subjected to prevailing westerlies. The climate is milder in comparison to other areas of the same latitude around the globe due to the influence of the Gulf Stream.

5 Best Ways to Travel Around Europe
  1. Take a Bus. A very cheap way to travel around Europe, including between cities, or across borders is using the bus.
  2. Catch a Train. Europe has great transport connections and this includes the railway.
  3. Charter a plane.
  4. Rent a car or camper, this remains one of the most popular ways to see Europe in-depth.
  5. Go on a tour or cruise and experience the wondrous waterways of old.
Popular Airlines

South African Airways, Emirates Airlines, Etihad Airlines, Qatar Airlines, Turkish Airways, Kenya Airways, Lufthansa Airways, British Airways

Medical Advisory

It is recommended that you pay close attention to post-Covid travel regulations when travelling through Europe. As each country has a differing climate and fauna, it is best to speak to your Travel Bella Travel Manager for more specific information.

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