South African Tourism's Brand Ambassador Jonty Rhodes Launches "My Travel Escapades in South Africa" travel guide

MUMBAI: South African Tourism Brand Ambassador in India, popular cricketer Jonty Rhodes, today launched "My Travel Escapades in South Africa", a travel guide he has written in association with Lonely Planet Magazine India, to showcase the fascinating experiences in his home country.

After the successful launch of Rhodes' "My South African Diary" last year, South African Tourism looked at a completely new facet of attracting travellers to South Africa by announcing an unprecedented 'Take Me to South Africa' contest. The four lucky winners of the contest embarked on a once-in-a-lifetime trip to South Africa with Rhodes, who played the role of host and tour guide during this trip.

From the country's magnificent wildlife, iconic beaches, adrenaline pumping adventure activities, to its world-class cities, shopping, nightlife, food & wine, the chosen winners were at the forefront of some amazing, unforgettable travel experiences. Inspired by this awesome holiday in his home country, Rhodes penned the new travel guide, "My Travel Escapades in South Africa", aimed at showcasing the varied, fun-filled, adventurous and experiential holiday offerings of South Africa to the Indian travellers.

Talking about his travel guide, the charismatic Rhodes, who has proved to be a popular Brand Ambassador in the Indian market for South African Tourism, said, "There's no other country in the world like my home country South Africa that combines varied natural beauty, amazing fun-filled experiences and cultural diversity so brilliantly. From the time I heard about the contest to the moment when the contest winners arrived in Johannesburg, I was ecstatic to explore the exciting itinerary put together by South African Tourism and to take the opportunity of showcasing my fascinating country to them. With this comprehensive travel diary, I have shared some of the group's most memorable experiences through the two week trip. It was my pleasure to be their host and hopefully this travel guide will inspire and encourage more Indians to travel to and experience South Africa."

"It was an exciting step for us to get Jonty on board as the brand ambassador to promote South Africa in India. The travel guide is part of our first unique initiative undertaken with him to showcase the varied experiences offered by South Africa. Jonty's love for travel, his passion for his country and enthusiasm to promote South Africa among Indian travelers opened up the perfect platform for this unprecedented initiative. We would like to take this opportunity to thank him and all our South African partners for making this initiative a great success," said Ms. Hanneli Slabber, India Country Manager for South African Tourism.

The "My Travel Escapades in South Africa" guide encapsulates Jonty and his group's exciting journey through Johannesburg, Cape Town and surrounds, Garden Route, various game reserves, scenic winelands and the gorgeous city of Durban. The guide offers a 44-page narration of their extraordinary travel experiences across the magnificent country.

"Last year, we joined hands with South Africa Tourism to bring you a unique look at this country, and we are delighted to once again let loose Jonty Rhodes, kickass cricketer, all-round nice guy and alarmingly enthusiastic traveler, in his homeland. He went further this time, in the spirit of a true Lonely Planet traveler, and played host and guide to the winners of 'The take me to South Africa contest' , we don't know whether they played cricket on the way, but clearly they had a very, very good time" said Mr. Vardhan Kondvikar, Editor, Lonely Planet Magazine India.

To further promote the guide, South African Tourism has partnered with NDTV Good Times as the electronic channel partner and Lonely Planet magazine India as the distribution partner. NDTV has captured the exciting South African journey of the four lucky winners with Jonty Rhodes in a three episode series titled "South Africa with Jonty Rhodes" scheduled to be telecast from 12th August, every Monday at 9:30pm. Lonely Planet will assist South African Tourism to reach out to the urban youthful reader profile of the magazine by distributing the travel guide with their September issue of the magazine.

According to the latest arrival figures, South Africa received 106,774 Indians tourists between January to December 2012. This is an increase of 18.2% to the corresponding period last year.

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