This post was most recently updated on December 14th, 2017
Africa, renowned for its jaw-dropping safaris, is arguably the most endowed continent when it comes to exciting tourist destinations on earth. Tourists from both within and without are spoilt for choice as they select among competing Africa destinations. However, without undervaluing other destinations we present what are considered to be the best places to visit in Africa.
Embark on a 14-day adventure highlighting the best in Southern Africa, connecting to African grass routes, incorporating the panoramic sights of Mpumalanga and the Big 5 of Kruger and much more! Make the best of your stay while in South Africa!
Cost: From $1,920.84
Embark on a journey across the African continent on this 35-day overland tour. Traverse the giant sand dunes of Namibia, discover the moonlit extraordinaire that is Etosha National Park. Get the best of Botswana’s Okavango Delta. Stand in awe of the majestic Victoria Falls before making your way to the breathtaking Lake Malawi. Complete the experience with the tropical beaches of Zanzibar. Bursting with attractions this tour is sure to show you the beauty of Africa!
Cost: From $3,136.48
Places to visit in Africa
Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya
The Mara, as it is fondly referred to is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Kenya and Africa indeed. Located on the floor of the great Rift Valley this reserve is home to one of the wonders of the world namely the spectacular wildebeest migration. This single phenomenon which involves over 1.5 million wildebeests, zebras, and a few other grazers has contributed greatly in putting Maasai Mara on the global tourist destinations map.
That’s not all. Over 95 species of assorted mammals, reptiles, amphibians and over 400 species of birds call this reeve “home”. To spice it up, there is no other place in Africa with more abundant wildlife than Maasai Mara. It is no wonder then that here the big five (Elephant, Lion, leopard, buffalo and the endangered rhino). Truly a must-go place in Africa.
See also: Kenya Attractions
Find a tour: Kenya Tours and Activities
Victoria Falls, Zambia
This is hailed as one of the seven natural wonders of this world. And this is for more than one or two good reasons. The falls offer breath-taking views. Anyone who has been here will agree that the sights are too majestic and spectacular to describe. Think of waterfalls that spread a whole 1.7 kilometres and pass a volume of water that ranges between 200,000 to 700,000 cubic meters per single minute down a vertical drop of a hundred meters and you start seeing why these falls are so mesmerizing.
As if that is not enough visitors don’t have to wait to get Victoria falls to experience its majestic nature. The vaporish spray of this fall can be seen very clearly from…. yes, a distance of 30km. No wonder the locals have christened it the smoke that thunders. Once there, take a walk all the way across the knife bridge. Here you get a spectacular view of the famous eastern cataract all the way to the main gorge. Another interesting feature of the Victoria Falls is the resplendent moonbow. This is an amazing appearance of the full moon behind the spray of the waterfall. You have to be there to appreciate this intriguing sight.
See also: Zambia Attractions
Suggested Tours: Zambia Tours and Activities
The Pyramids of Giza, Egypt
These are the most feted and famed structures in Egypt and Africa as well. They date back to the ancient Egyptian civilization and have such a significant place in world history that they have become one of the top tourist attractions in Africa. In the actual sense, these are ancient tombs of pharaohs or Egyptian kings and as according to popular local traditions, the pyramids are guarded by Sphinx.
These superstructures have wowed spectators for many generations. Bearing in mind that these structures have been standing tall for millenniums, one cannot help but wonder how the builders in those ancient days succeeded to putt up them up with outstanding mathematical precision. Paying a visit here takes you to several pyramids including the Great Pyramid, Pyramid of Chephren, Pyramid of Mycerinus and of course the Sphynx. The last one is not a pyramid but its story and history are intricately inter-webbed with that of the Pyramids of Giza.
See also: Egypt Attractions
Suggested Tours: Egypt Tours and Activities
Mgahinga Gorilla National Park, Uganda
Situated in South West Uganda, this national park is one of the few places you might be lucky enough to come face to face with a gorilla. Other this rather rare apes, Mgahinga Gorilla National Park is home to about 76 species of mammals including elephants, golden monkeys buffaloes, and bushbucks.
If you are a bird watcher, this National Park won’t disappoint. There are about 1115 bird species to sample these include the crowned hornbill, grey-crowned crane and others Ruwenzori turaco, yellow-billed kite. For hikers and mountain climbers, the park has a lot to offer; three of the eight Virunga volcanoes namely Mount Gahinga, Mount Muhabura and Mount Sabyinyo stand here and offer excellent locations for stretching your legs.
See also: Uganda Attractions
Suggested Tour: Uganda Tours and Activities
Table Mountain, Cape Town, South Africa
Known for its rich biodiversity this mountain is one of the most appealing reasons why visitors spend time here. Table Mountain is home to the richest, yet tinniest plant kingdom. If you have a passion for plants, this your ultimate destination.
With over 1,470 plant species in this 57-square-kilometer area, you can’t afford to miss out on this destination. Most interesting is that most of these plant species are endemic to the area and include endangered species such as Peninsula Sandstone Fynbos, Peninsular Shale Renosterveld, and many others. Animal lovers have splendid times
Animal lovers have splendid times observing Rock hyraxes, snakes, mongooses, a rare amphibian called Table Mountain Ghost Frog as they roam free in this nature-lovers’ paradise. From the top of the Mountain, you get a panoramic view of other neighboring attractions including Devil’s Peak, Robben Island, the Atlantic Ocean, the sweeping countryside and the Lion’s Head.
Suggested Tours: Cape Town Tours and Activities
A visit to this unique destination is a strong indictment to the fact that travel is not just about nature and what it has to offer. One can still have fab times enjoying the achievements of the human family; call it celebrating human culture and diversity if you like. On that note, and what it has to offer qualifies to be one of the top tourist attraction in Africa. Moving on, this city, also known as the “Red City” of Marrakesh is one of the magical places you should not fail to visit.
Brimming with gardens, markets, mosques, and palaces, this city offers an exciting experience to visitors as they sample what the Northern Arica Muslim world has to offer. Looking for inner peace, go to the serene Majorelle, an enchanting garden created by the French painter Jacques Majorelle in a period of forty years. You will see why this garden is one of the most visited locations in this city.
Alternatively, you can take time to imbue the beauty of the historic mosques scattered in several parts of the city; but take care, respect the faiths of other people. If you are a non-Muslim you will not be allowed inside any of the mosques.
See also: Morocco Attractions
Suggested Tours: Morocco Tours and Activities
Sossusvlei Dunes, Namibia
A visit to this place takes you to one of the oldest cold deserts on earth. Interestingly, this area provides one of the most spectacular scenes in Namibia and beyond. It is for this reason that during a visit to this place it is advisable to carry a good camera and join the rest of the travelers in capturing the fascinating sights of this dessert; the Sossusvlei Dunes. These are massive dunes have a very long and fascinating history stretching back millions of years ago.
Talk to your guide to understand and track this history and how these red-colored sand mountains became “tourists” moving from one place to another. While here also pay a visit to the nearby Sossus Vlei, an area encircled by some of the highest dunes in the world. In here in the midst of the dunes you find, a pan that once nourished the area with water.
Other than the dunes, there are other equally appealing attractions that one should visit. Digress a bit and visit the Sesriem Canyon, Dead Vlei, and Hidden vlei. You will never regret the experience you get in one of the few cold deserts on earth.
See also: Namibia Attractions
Suggested Tours: Namibia Tours and Activities
Mountain gorillas, Rwanda
This is one of the rare treks you will ever make and have part of your entry fee go to conservation of an endangered species. So, this trek takes you to one of the few places on earth where you can see the endangered mountain gorillas also known as Gorilla Berengei Berengei. Gorilla trekking is the major reason why very many tourists visit Rwanda and also Uganda where these apes are found.
Suggested Tours: Rwanda Tours and Activities
Mount Kilimanjaro, Tanzania
Located along the border of Kenya and Tanzania Mt. Kilimanjaro is the highest mountain in Africa and prides in being one of the seven summits or mountains in the world. Trekkers cherish this mountain; it is one of the top tourist attractions in Africa. Every year thousands of visitors from all over the world come to gaze with awe and admiration at this snow-capped equatorial mountain.
Many of these visitors go right ahead and try to conquer the highest mountain in Africa. You don’t have to be a professional or ardent trekker for you to enjoy scaling the heights of Africa’s tallest mountain. You too can assemble your climbing gear and get a taste of what Kilimanjaro has in store for climbers. In addition, the fact that this mountain is situated inside Mount Kilimanjaro National Park means there is more to do beyond enjoying the hike up the mountain. One can also take a game drive and see what else the park has to offer.
See also: Tanzania Attractions
Suggested Tours: Tanzania Tours and Activities
Makgadikgadi Pans, Botswana
Ever been to a salt pan? Most likely no. So why not compensate for that by visiting one of the largest salt pans on earth. Think of it; a salt pan with an extensive area of 3,900 sq. km. That is how big Makgadikgadi Pans in Botswana. Situated right in the middle the savanna in north-eastern Botswana, Makgadikgadi Pan is a sight to behold. Stretch your imagination and visualize a glaring, whitish and endless plain during the dry season.
Hardly a single being, animal or otherwise is to be seen; only marveling holidaymakers like you. That is how serene and intriguing Makgadikgadi Pans, are during the dry spell. But once the rains come the story takes a dramatic turn. The pan becomes abuzz with life; it becomes the most important wetland in Botswana.
At this time migrating animals such as the wildebeest and zebras with their predators in tow become a common sight in this location. It’s the time that migratory birds dot the area. It is not uncommon to find flamingos having their share of the seasonal glad tidings. Possibly the best way to enjoy not sides of the Makgadikgadi Pans life is to make at least two visits; one during the dry season and another during the rainy season.
See also: Botswana Attractions
Suggested Tours: Botswana Tours and Activities
With this brief but insightful summaries of the best places to visit in Africa, you have no reason why you should not plan for a lifetime tour of Africa. The experience you will get will leave you yearning for more.