New destinations on show at Matka this week

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Trade fair promises exoticism even for seasoned travellers

This week, the Matka Nordic Travel Fair taking place in Helsinki will be presenting a number of new travel destinations from around the world for the first time.

These include, for example, Ras al-Khaimah in the United Arab Emirates as well as Rwanda and Ghana, which are among a total of more than 80 countries and nearly 900 exhibitors.

Located 85 kilometres from the city of Dubai, the “holiday paradise” of Ras al-Khaimah, colloquially known as RAK, offers “warm weather and glorious hotels for those enjoying beach holidays”, the trade fair says.

The Ras al-Khaimah stand will present, for instance, the various Hilton hotels in the emirate.

Described as quieter than Dubai, RAK is a destination suited to families with children, while active travellers can try hiking, rock climbing in the mountains or a desert safari.

Another intriguing place to visit there is the ghost village of Jazirat al-Hamra. Believed by locals to be haunted, the village was once home to three tribes who were rehoused in Abu Dhabi in the late 1960s after a dispute with RAK’s ruler.

African beauty
One of the most welcoming countries in Africa, Ghana has become known as an urbanising, emerging African country where visitors can experience “both local urban culture and stunning places of natural beauty”, as Matka puts it.

The country’s tourist friendliness is also boosted by English being its official language. At the fair, Ghana’s tourism office will present beach life, shopping in the capital Accra, wildlife safaris in savannahs and rainforests and the numerous European-influenced castles and colonial buildings.

The emerging destination of Rwanda, the country of a thousand hills, is best known for its endangered mountain gorillas but will also present the Volcanoes National Park, some of Africa’s finest beaches on Lake Kivu, local dance culture in the capital Kigali and the possibilities to combine a visit with Tanzania or Uganda, both of which are also at Matka.

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