Africa & Near East Fall Semester
The Youth International Africa & Near East program is a 12 week experiential learning travel semester in Kenya, Egypt, and Jordan, beginning with a 3-day orientation in Colorado. The fall 2020 program has been cancelled due to COVID-19. We expect to resume this program in fall 2021.
Fall 2021 Daily Itinerary (September 14 to December 6)
Colorado, USA: September 14 to 17
Sept. 14 to 17: Rocky Mountains: Team members meet in Colorado, and stay together in Estes Park for a three-day orientation. In this spectacular Rocky Mountain setting, they take part in a series of orientation workshops covering topics including team building, health and safety, cultural sensitivity, and more, in preparation for their time abroad. On Sept. 17, the team flies from Denver, Colorado, to Nairobi, Kenya, arriving in Kenya on Sept. 18.
Kenya: September 18 to October 29
Sept. 18 to 20: Nairobi: The team has time to begin exploring the bustling and exotic capital city of Kenya.
Sept. 20 to 26: Nairobi suburban Home Stay: During this week, team members learn first-hand about life in Nairobi while living with a Kenyan family in a suburb of the country’s capital. They become involved in family and community activities, and also help out by working on a volunteer service project in the community. On Sept. 26, travel by bus to Mount Kenya.
Sept. 26 to Oct. 2: Mount Kenya Trek: For one week the team treks through thick rain forest up to high alpine terrain on the slopes of Mount Kenya, the second highest mountain in Africa.
Oct. 2 to 12: Village Home Stay: A week and a half living with host families in a small rural village in the hills of southwestern Kenya. The team learns about the life of village tribal families by living it themselves. During this time, they become involved in family and community activities, and also help out by working on a volunteer service project in the community. There will also be group outings to explore and learn about the surrounding area.
Oct. 13 to 16: Safari in Masai Mara and Nakuru National Parks: For four days (three days in Masai Mara and one day in Nakuru), the team goes on safari to search for and observe wild animals: elephants, giraffe, lions, and much more.
Oct. 16 to 17: Nairobi: Overnight back in the capital city after the safari. On Oct. 17 travel by train from Nairobi to Mombasa.
Oct. 17 to 19: Mombasa: Time to explore this lively city on the Indian Ocean coast. Travel by bus up the coast to village on Oct. 19.
Oct. 19 to 25: Coastal village home stay: In this coastal village, home to the Swahili tribe, the group lives with local families and learns in a hands-on way about the customs and lifestyle of the Swahili people. The team also helps out by volunteering on a community project. On Oct. 25 travel by bus to Tiwi Beach.
Oct. 25 to 28: Tiwi Beach: The group spends three nights living in cottages right next to the beach on the coast of the Indian Ocean. Time is spent relaxing and enjoying beach and ocean activities. Emphasis will also be put on individual and group reflection on the African experience. On Oct. 28, travel by bus back to Mombasa, then by train from Mombasa back to Nairobi.
Oct. 28 to 29: Nairobi: Overnight back in the capital city. Kenya wrap-up, and preparation for Egypt and Jordan. On Oct. 29, fly from Nairobi, Kenya to Amman, Jordan.
Jordan: October 29 to November 12
Oct. 29 to Nov.1: Amman: Exploration of ancient ruins and the bustling streets of this colorful capital city.
Nov. 1 to 7: Home stay: During this week, the team lives with Jordanian host families near the city of Amman. They become involved in family and community activities, and also help out by working on a volunteer service project.
Nov. 7: The Dead Sea: The team spends part of the day floating on the famous Dead Sea, and exploring ancient sites in the area. They then continue traveling by bus to Wadi Musa, and stay overnight in this village next to Petra.
Nov. 8: Petra: A full day to explore the famous ruins of the Nabataean Kingdom of Petra. Overnight back in Wadi Musa. On the morning of Nov. 9, the team travels by bus from Wadi Musa to Wadi Rum.
Nov. 9 to 11: Desert Camel Safari: For three days and two nights, the team sets off on a camel safari into the desert near Wadi Rum. They learn about the desert life of the Bedouin by traveling with them, following their customs, and camping out overnight in the desert.
Nov. 11 to 12: Amman: Travel by bus from Wadi Rum back to Amman on Nov. 11. Wrap-up of the Jordan experience, and time for final exploration of Amman. Overnight back in Amman. On Nov. 12 fly from Amman, Jordan to Cairo, Egypt.
Egypt: November 12 to December 6
Nov. 12 to 16: Cairo: Team members have group and independent time to explore one of the world’s most historically rich and fascinating cities. Sites include, but are not be limited to, the Great Pyramids of Giza, the Egyptian National Museum, Islamic Cairo, and the Camel Market.
Nov. 16 to 22: Home stay: During this week, team members learn first-hand about life in a small town near Cairo, while living with an Egyptian host family. They become involved in family and community activities, and also help out by working on a volunteer service project in the community. On Nov. 22 travel by bus back to Cairo, followed by an overnight train from Cairo to Aswan.
Nov. 23 to 26: Aswan: Time as a group, and independently, to explore the ancient city of Aswan. There is also a day trip to visit the temple of Abu Simbel near the border of Sudan. Preparation time for upcoming Felucca trip.
Nov. 26 to 28: Felucca trip on the Nile River: For three days the team sails down the Nile River, from Aswan to Luxor, in this ancient-style Nubian sailboat. The team sleeps out overnight on the sailboat, under the stars.
Nov. 28 to Dec. 1: Luxor: Time to explore this fascinating city built on the ruins of ancient Thebes, and often described as the world’s greatest open-air museum. The team has the opportunity to explore the famed Valley of the Kings, Luxor temple, and Karnak temple, and more. On Dec. 1, travel by bus from Luxor to Hurghada.
Dec. 1 to 5: Hurghada: The team has time to enjoy beautiful beaches and snorkeling in the Red Sea, exploring one of the world’s most diverse and abundant areas of underwater life. There is also time set aside for individual and group reflection on the entire semester, as well as preparations for returning home. On Dec. 5 fly from Hurghada to Cairo.
Dec. 5 to 6: Cairo: Overnight back in Cairo. The team has some time for final exploration of Cairo and end of semester celebrations. On Dec. 6, the team flies from Cairo together back to the USA and then onward individually to each team member’s final home destination.