Are you looking for a vacation that will be the experience of a lifetime? Africa is the answer. Here you will find awe inspiring landscapes and views, amazing animals, ancient cultures and fascinating people. There are over fifty countries on this great and diverse continent, and while many are perhaps too politically unstable to be safe, there are several worth considering. And to whet your appetite, here’s a look at a handful of the more popular countries for travelers.
Zimbabwe has some of the most beautiful landscapes on the continent and superb hiking trails through it all. You will hike through such diverse landscapes as steep sandstone peaks, meadow wildflowers and savanna valleys. There are pools and rivers safe enough to swim in, steep gorges, and some of the most beautiful flowers, including orchids, lobelia and hibiscus. Lake Kariba, a large, man-made lake, is Zimbabwe’s water playground where you can spend time fishing, sailing and water skiing. Swimming is not advisable, however, due to the many crocodiles in the lake. Elephants, rhinos and other game are often seen on the banks. Victoria Falls, one of the world’s most spectacular and amazing sights, is also located in Zimbabwe. Bungee jump off Zambezi Bridge, white water raft through some wild rapids, or take a leisurely cruise upstream to enjoy this natural wonder and all the wildlife around it. Or visit some of Matopos National Park’s caves with paintings by ancient bushmen.
Botswana, a land locked country just north of South Africa, consists of mostly desert and hilly bush and grasslands, but has some of Africa’s most beautiful scenery, including the Okavango Delta, a wetland paradise full of many bird and plant species. Moremi Game Reserve is considered one of the most beautiful wildlife reserves in all of Africa, due to the great diversity of plant and animal life. Lagoons, floodplains and forests support all sorts of game, including the Red Lechwe Antelope. If you really want to get up close and personal with the animals, visit Mokolodi National Reserve, where you can track elephants and giraffes, walk with elephants, participate in game drives and horse trekking, and even be licked by a cheetah!
South Africa is a beautiful country surrounded by oceans on three sides with several protected wildlife parks and game reserves. For instance, Kruger National Park is an enormous park and home to 147 types of animals, 500 species of birds, and 33 different amphibians, as well as 300 different types of trees. You are sure to see big game such as lions, elephants, rhinos, giraffes, hippos, leopards, cheetah and zebras. South Africa also has great hiking areas, especially on the plateau where you can walk through evergreen forests and along river trails, see wonderful panoramic views and strange rock formations, as well as numerous small game and birds. If you prefer water activities, the oceans, rivers and lakes offer opportunities for sailing, surfing, whale watching and fishing, including big game sports fishing off the Cape of Good Hope. Scuba diving is also popular in South Africa and you can even do shark dives and wreck dives, searching for sunken ships.
Kenya is one of Africa’s oldest and most geographically diverse countries. The Great Africa Rift Valley runs through Kenya from north to south, with many lakes, extinct volcanoes and small game reserves, and the views are some of the most beautiful in the world. The Central Highlands contain some of the best mountains in Africa for hiking and climbing, including Mt Kenya, the second highest on the continent. Along the Kenyan coastline runs a beautiful coral reef and the area is filled with marine life, lagoons and creeks, mangrove forests with several species of birds, and overhanging cliffs. Try a hot air balloon safari and really see the sights.
There are also many large cities in Kenya, including Nairobi, the largest city on the continent between Johannesburg, South Africa and Cairo, Egypt. Mombasa is Kenyas’s oldest town, dating back to 500 BC, with many interesting historical sites to visit and Malindi is an old coastal town that offers not only great historical sites, but also fun water activities such as diving, kite surfing, snorkeling and deep sea fishing. Kenya also boasts several game reserves and national parks where you will find every type of animal and bird Africa has to offer, especially in the most popular park, Masai Mara. Kenya is also a good place for shopping for local craft items, including soap stone carvings, jewelry wood and ebony carvings.
At the very North of Africa is probably its most famous country, Egypt. Cruise down the beautiful Nile River, visit the Great Pyramids and Valley of the Kings, take a camel ride or just relax and enjoy the ancient cities of Cairo or Alexandria.
Feel free to explore this site where you can learn more about each of these destinations. One thing is for certain. regardless of which country you visit you’re guaranteed an experience like no other.