Africa Travel Week

ATW Podcast

Martin Hiller, Creative + Content: Travel, Tourism & Creative Industries RX Africa

Filled with wanderlust, I am always planning my next adventure. I love learning new things and experiencing first-hand what a place has to offer.

Through my travels and work, I get to engage with people on a variety of topics which fuels my inner student. I am the secret weapon for any 30 Seconds team. My decorating style is maximalism and is filled with memories from my travels and pictures of my two Boston Terriers – Pia & Dexter.  

What kind of traveller are you? 

I like to have every second of my trip planned, but my husband is the complete opposite. When we first started travelling together there were some hiccups. Ten years later and we plan half the holiday and the rest is planned when we are there. I have to admit that some of the best experiences we have had were not planned beforehand.  

Tell us about one of your most memorable trips/travel moments. Where and why?  

Sunrise over Ankgor Wat. There was something magical seeing the sunrise over a temple that is thousands of years old. It was reminder that no matter what you are facing, the sun will always rise.  

What is your all-time favourite destination?

They call it amazing Thailand for a reason! From buzzy Bangkok to tranquil tropical islands and lush jungles, Thailand is a destination of endearing contrasts. I was fortunate enough to spend two weeks in this amazing country and experienced its fragrant cuisine, rich cultural heritage and verdant natural landscapes. 

Based on the five senses and thinking about travelling what do you…  

  • Like to see: 
    My decorating style is maximalism. I always try and go to local markets and antique stores. 
  • Like to taste: 
    Local fare. I love tasting food that a place is known for.  
  • Like to feel: 
    The sunrise on my face. There is something magical watching a sunrise in a place you have never been to.
  • Like to hear: 
    Where possible I try and to go to a musical, opera or orchestra performance when travelling.   

What are the main challenges you still encounter as an LGBTQ+ traveller in Africa?  

South Africa is a leader in LGBTQ+ travel in Africa. I have travelled a lot through South Africa and have never had a negative response. My travels into Africa have been for work. Friends that have travelled for leisure have also had positive experiences. This however is not always the case. In many African countries, homosexuality is still illegal. LGBTQ+ travellers need to educate themselves about the laws of the countries they visit.  

If you could wave a magic wand, what is the one thing you would change to enhance LGBTQ+ travel to Africa?  

Understanding. A lot of attitudes towards the LGBTQ+ community are based on perception. Governments need to create an environment whereby its LGBTQ+ community is protected and conversations can take place. Conferences such as EQUAL Africa are so important as they provide a platform for these conversations to take place. 

Suggestions on resources for other travel and tourism stakeholders. Any websites, publications, podcasts, thought leaders you can recommend or newsletters we should sign up to?  

Without a doubt, www.atwconnect.com

Lastly, what was your favourite thing about Africa Travel Week (WTM Africa) in 2022 and why should everyone attend in 2023? 

Being able to connect with the travel and tourism community face-to-face. It was wonderful to see Buyers engage with travel product. Being able to provide this platform for your industry is truly rewarding. RX is in the business of building business and ATW is a testament to this. As we continue to provide resources through our online platform, www.atwconnect.com, we are busy with the 2023 show which will provide even more opportunities to connect and do business. We plan to colour the world with Africa Travel Week. 

Africa Travel Week

Africa Travel Week (ATW) focuses on inbound and outbound markets for general leisure tourism, luxury travel, LGBTQ+ travel and the MICE/business travel sector as well as travel technology. Shows include: ILTM Africa, WTM Africa, EQUAL Africa, ibtm AFRICA, Travel Forward, Sports & Events Tourism Exchange and African Tourism Investment Summit.