A whole lot of posts nowadays talks about how authenticity is a myth, but in our experience it is all about accepting things the way that they actually are. What you have in your mind about what to expect at a destination might be worlds apart from how they actually are, but if you go there open-minded, and embracing the reality of the local lifestyle you can definitely experience the authenticness of a destination. Once you are open-minded you will discover that the only disappointment you will have is from your own inability to get over your expectations.
Some people that visits African cultures have this vision that time stood still and that this culture stood still with it, but in reality you will see, for example, a Massai with a cellphone, and that might seem inauthentic to some of the travellers. African cultures are not a cultural museum and they don’t want to be a photo opportunity for a tourist. Instead, they would love to welcome you into their homes and show you how they live, even if the way they do things nowadays also did develop with time.
The most expectations we have has been created by novels or films that was set in a certain region or portrayed a specific culture. Crowds of tourists have started coming and expected (and even demanding) the same experiences that was portrayed in the fiction. As a result, there are now tourist attractions where they “role play” the culture as it was where you can eat what they used to eat, see the traditional dances and the way they used to live.
So coming to the end of our post, we would like to point out that authenticity is what you make of it. Leave your expectations at home and embrace the journey!