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Guy Lankester

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 Guy Lankesterabout_guy_1

Hi i'm Guy, founder and director of From Here 2 Timbuktu. Welcome!

Travelling to and from Africa is in my blood. My mother's grandparents ventured out from Scotland in 1902 searching for a new life in Southern Africa. My grandfather was born in Bulawayo, my mother in Salisbury, Rhodesia. In 1960 my father went out from England at the age of 18 to seek his life and by the end of the decade I was born and we were migrating back to England where I grew up.

Wise man about_guy_3 Cameroon about_guy_8

As a child I loved returning to the continent of my birth to see my mother’s family. I remember  the freedom of the sunshine, wide open landscapes, and the warm embrace of the earth.

I loved the wildlife, endless days swimming in my cousins’ pool, the sound of the evening chorus, and most of all seeing how happy my mother was to be home. 

I first started travelling independently in Africa when I was eighteen. I was in Zimbabwe for a year off before university when I came across a truck driver who was driving to Nairobi. Ignoring warnings that "the rest of Africa is not like Zimbabwe" I hitched that lift in the truck and discovered another Africa, black Africa, the Africa of the open road - showers under waterfalls, steak cooked all day on the truck's gearbox, sleeping out in the bush under the thick blanket of the African night sky, a warm and welcoming community wherever we needed it.

This Africa intrigued me even more - it seemed to beat to my time. Since then I have hitch-hiked, bussed, trekked, trucked, horsed, cameled and boated the continent from west coast to east, over deserts and deep into forests, up mountains and down rivers. Always, the exhilarating open scenery, the magnificent wildlife, even the brilliance of the night sky are merely a stunning back drop to the most vibrant and fascinating aspect of Africa - its diverse, vibrant and resilient people and their cultures and histories.

When I travel I seek ‘the road less travelled’, and  accept the universal hospitality of the African community. Everywhere cheerful respect, strong cultures, colourful street-life, a welcoming call and a warm greeting - going to Africa, for all of us, is going home to our humanity.

The idea of From Here 2 Timbuktu came out of of a period of travel to the Sahara and West Africa between 2004 and 2007 when I was seeking a new drection to my own life. The idea was to give something back to the amazing communities that had welcomed me in and give travellers a taste of the Africa I know, an Africa that escapes the negative imagery I clash into daily at home in the west for a positive life affirming continent that had inspired me to return again and again to discover the continent of our origins.

From Here 2 Timbuktu will take you into the metaphorical African village as an honoured travelling guest rather than a passing tourist, we will get you in on the party rather than have it put on for you and send you into barely trodden territory.

From Here 2 Timbuktu aims to give you a perspective changing experience of West Africa and to ensure that your trip has a positive impact on the amazing communities visited.