Besides the fact that this will be an unforgettable experience of a lifetime, and that we are offering you a super all-inclusive deal.... Besides that fact that this is the chance to explore a country that is not really prepared for typical tourism and does not have the kind of infrastructure that would make independent travel very easily done... Besides the fact that travelling with us will allow you the opportunity to live in close with the locals, and experience the country from an insider's view-point, really feeling and tasting the culture intimately, rather than simply observing from the distant "tourist" perspective...
Besides all this, the fact is that a substantial portion of all revenue generated by all of our workshops, classes, performances, and sales, go directly to supporting people in need, as well as creating employment opportunities for many very grateful people!
One of the key objectives of our Guinea Trip & Course is to create work opportunities for Guineans, which is exactly what happens - there will be a variety of people who will assist in your stay - be it through cooking, washing, home-stays, as guides, instructors, etc, - or be it those who are perhaps fortuned by their sales of arts, crafts, food supplies, transportation services, or you name it, by us or you, during our stay! Besides being a fun opportunity for the locals involved, it also is a source of income and work opportunities, for which everyone is grateful!
Our workshops aim to support and create opportunities for individuals, families, and small businesses, aiding the local economy and those who need it the most, rather than simply supporting large businesses, corporations, and the already well-off upper class as typical hotel-to-restaurant tours so often do.
For the duration of your stay with us while participating in our Guinea Trip and Intensive Course, we will provide you with simple and very basic but comfortable accommodations on a private property with a large fenced yard near the village of Dubreka (about an hour north of Conakry). Exact location may be changed based on the number of participants and local conditions & availability.
You will be staying in a homestay situation with ourselves and our closest friends and family, alongside the other Guinea Trip participants. You may also find yourself staying in hotels, camping, or staying in rentals during our outings & excursions, or in the case that we should decide to organize a split-location workshop and will not be staying in one single place for the full workshop duration.
You will be living alongside the locals, like the locals, and thus rooms are "African style" - rustic and minimally furnished - and are supplied with basic beds and bedding (mattress, sheet, & pillow), as well as mosquito nets & fans. Toilet facilities are often shared, and there is no hot water. Washing machines and dryers are non-existent (we hand-wash) - however, there are plenty of people who will be more than happy to wash your clothes for a tip - creating employment is one of the key objectives of our Guinea trips! Kitchen facilities are shared and will be minimal - water may be from buckets, stoves are actually coal-barbecues - but don't forget, all meals and preparation are included in your course fees! ; ) Purified drinking water will also be provided.
Please be prepared to share spaces, to connect with locals, to adapt to new situations, conditions, and perhaps comfort levels, in order to truly enjoy and experience Guinea from an intimate perspective.
AN EXAMPLE OF A DAILY SCHEDULE
Wondering what a day in Guinea during our Guinea Trip & Course is like? Here is an exemplary itinerary for a weekday - please bear in mind that it is an example only, and times may change from day to day, depending on varying circumstances... On weekends we go on excursions and outings.
9 am : breakfast
10am - 12 noon : dance class (drummers may play along to practice drumming skills, or take advantage of the free time to explore, relax, or do as they please!)
12 noon - 1 pm : refresh and relax
1 pm - 2 pm lunchtime (in Africa this is always the biggest meal of the day!)
3pm - 5pm : drum class (dancers may choose to participate, practice their dance, or take advantage of the free time)
5pm - 7pm : free time for everyone - you may chose to explore on your own, or with our trusted friends during this time?
7pm - 8pm : dinner
8pm & on : Guinea comes alive in the night, and its' a great time to explore the streets, witness ceremonies, attend doundounbas, watch concerts & performances, have a tranquil campfire, or perhaps even go dancing in a nightclub!
Included in the Guinea Trip & Intensive Course cost, you will visit the coastal capital city of Conakry, located on a long peninsula, along with many of its' attractions, such as (but not limited to) the Madina Market (an enormous & bustling marketplace - one of the largest in Western Africa), various artisan shops, the National Museum of Guinea, the busy & colorful fisherman's port, and there will be opportunities to watch rehearsals and performances by local ballets (extremely talented drum and dance troupes) and other concerts by world-class artists, as well as participate in traditional ceremonies and street parties (doundounbas, sabars, guinee fares, djoles, etc), all of which will be real highlights of your stay and your cultural experience.
We will also enjoy fun weekend trips and excursions, which may include some or all of the following examples, depending on the duration of your stay: go on nature/rain-forest walks, visit breath-taking waterfalls, explore scenic mountain landscapes, visit traditional villages, go on boating excursions, relax on tropical islands and idyllic sand beaches, and more!
Other specially requested excursions and guided outings can be arranged at an additional cost.