The beautiful shores of Goree Island and markets filled with hundreds of craftsmen and artists are just some of the things awaiting sightseers going on a nine-day trip to West Africa with Brock Tours and Travel, LLC on May 8 - 16.
Travelers also enjoy custom African dishes such as peanut soup and fish and rice, or dance the night away to the drumbeat. Travelers will also get a one-of-a-kind look at historic sites in the slave trade.
“I took my first trip to West Africa 24 years ago and have been back on this particular trip six times since then because the people’s beauty and outlook on life is like no other,” said James Brock, who has 31 years of experience as a travel agent.
Brock is a certified agent with The International Air Transport Association (IATA), the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) and the American Society of Travel Agents (ASTA).
Brock said visiting Goree Island’s “Door of No Return” is an unforgettable experience.
“This is where most of enslaved Africans spent weeks on end chained down together. It was one of the most emotional experiences of my life,” Brock said.
The trip includes a boat tour to Juffureh, where the family of famed author Alex Haley’s home village is located. The itinerary also includes the 11th International Roots Festival, featuring travelers exhibitors from all over the continent of Africa. In addition, the excursion includes first class hotels and daily breakfast buffets. The package also provides seven additional meals, including meals at the festival, ground transportation between Dakar, Senegal and Gambia and a tour guide who will accompany the group on outings.
Deborah James, a counselor at DeKalb County's Martin Luther King High School, made the trip in 2009 with her Delta sorority sister, Lynita Johnson. She says the trip was an eye opener, provided at an unbeatable price.
“I just loved it. I really want to go back. The cost included so much. That was a selling point for me for sure. Towards the end of the trip the people of Mother Africa dress you in authentic batik attire and give you an African name. Mine was ‘Jammeh,’ which means peaceful person,” said James. “I was so impressed with Africa and the people that when I retire this year or next year, I’m seriously considering buying property there so the generations in my family can stay in touch with their roots and culture.”
Brock’s company is able to provide the inclusive trip at a reduced rate because he gets special group prices as an official promoter for the bi-annual Roots Festival. Traveling groups usually range from 20 – 50 people. Brock says travelers from Atlanta, Houston, Florida and New York, have joined the agency on the trip in the past.
At a rate of $2,850, double occupancy, travelers will take round-trip, international flights from Atlanta to New York’s JFK’s airport and then West Africa. There also will be a pre-departure orientation.
The single occupancy rate for the trip is $3,4000. Deposits of $750 may be made by Saturday, March 1, to confirm your spot or pay the entire fee by Saturday, March 15.
For more information, visit www.brocktours.com or call 404-244-1980.