World Travel Watch: Typhoid in Fiji, Khmer Rouge Tourism in Cambodia and More
World Travel Watch: Larry Habegger rounds up global travel news
03.10.10 | 10:41 AM ET
World Travel Watch is a weekly report designed to help you make informed judgments about travel. Conditions can change overnight, so always make your own inquiries before you leave home. The U.S. State Department and embassies or consulates are good places to start.
Cambodia: Khmer Rouge Hideout to Become Tourist Attraction
The final stronghold of the Khmer Rouge will become a tourist site now that the government has approved developing Anlong Veng in northern Cambodia. The tourism ministry has picked out some three dozen sites in the isolated region, including the fenced-off area where Pol Pot was kept under house arrest during his final months and the spot where he was unceremoniously cremated beneath a junk pile. Prime Minister Hun Sen also asked officials to produce a guidebook to the region that explains his policy to defeat the Khmer Rouge. No date has yet been set for completion of the site that is now visited by roughly 500 foreign tourists a month.
Fiji: Typhoid Outbreak Causes Health Ministry to Advise Against Kava Ceremonies
An outbreak of typhoid fever is occurring throughout the islands and Fiji’s health ministry advised visitors to villages and settlements to be especially careful with local water supplies, preferably bringing their own water unless they can be sure the local water has been boiled. At least 113 cases have been diagnosed with the severity of the disease dependent on how long the patient goes without treatment. Typhoid vaccinations are not 100 percent effective and the best prevention is to be careful with personal hygiene and food safety. The health ministry has even advised tourists not to take part in traditional kava drinking ceremonies unless the tour operator can be certain that the ministry’s health guidelines are being followed.
Finland and Sweden: Baltic Sea Ice Grabs Vessels, Disrupts Ferry Service
Some 50 vessels were trapped by ice in the Baltic Sea between Finland and Sweden March 4, including passenger ferries carrying more than 1,000 people. All vessels were rescued by ice breakers, but maritime authorities advised shipping companies to avoid the icy patches north of the Stockholm Archipelago. Freezing winds blew ice caps near the coastline, impeding the ferry passage and creating the worst ice cover since 1996. These conditions could continue to disrupt travel in the region.
Tanzania: Zanzibar Power Blackout Ends After Three Months
After three months without electrical power, the archipelago of Zanzibar finally got its supply restored so hotels, restaurants, factories and other businesses are able to operate again without running generators. The lights went off Dec. 10 when the undersea cable that brings power from the mainland failed. Local authorities are hoping that this repair will last, because such power failures have happened before, including a four-week blackout in 2008.
Thailand: $10,000 Free Travel Insurance Offered to Keep Tourists Coming
Facing new demonstrations over long-simmering political tensions, Thailand continues to offer tourists free insurance coverage up to $10,000 for anyone harmed in protests or delayed because of political unrest. Compensation for delays is $100 per day and for injuries, $1,000 per day of hospitalization and free medical care. The insurance coverage will remain in place until the end of the year, and all visa fees have been waived until March 2011. These measures were enacted in late 2008 after protesters seized Bangkok’s two airports and hobbled Thailand’s tourism industry.