Africa is a huge continent and offers countless destinations worth exploring. While traveling through Africa can you enter the Masai Mara people Kenya Meet. You can look out over the plains of the Serengeti or relax on a tropical island. Africa is diverse and beautiful, and there is no end to what you can see, do and discover there. When planning your next African trip, make sure to include at least one destination from this one bucketlist. with must-sees in Africa!
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The archipelago off the coast of Tanzania is semi-autonomous and it is truly a unique destination in Africa. Zanzibar has an interesting mix of architecture, with Arab, Middle Eastern, Moorish and Indian styles in the cities. There are many world class beaches to choose from.
Zanzibar also has a very vibrant and well-preserved history. Spend some time in the capital Stone Town, home to several fantastic museums and the 17th century fortress.
Also read: Zanzibar, Tanzania | Beautiful beaches and a special history
2. Djenne – Mali
Probably the most historic city in all Mali is Djenne. The city served as an important element of the trans-Saharan gold trade. Djenne is still a regional hub thanks to its impressive weekly market that gathers residents from all the surrounding areas.
By far the most amazing monument in the city is the Grand Mosque. The largest mud brick building in the world. The Islamic mosque dates back to the 13th century, although it was not officially completed until 1907.
3. Ait Benhaddou – Morocco
On the edge of the High Atlas Mountains in Morocco lies the incredible city of Ait Benhaddou. Ait Benhaddou is also known as Mud Brick City. The city used to be a refuge for travelers traveling between the Sahara and the city of Marrakesh.
During a visit to Ait Benhaddou you can see the mud buildings. The old granary on the hill of the town is fun to explore and the mausoleum of Ben-Haddou is also a must to visit.
4. Isalo National Park – Madagascar
Just off the coast of Mozambique in the waters of the Indian Ocean, lies the island Madagascar† There is much to see and do in Madagascar. The highlight is undoubtedly the Isalo National Park. Within the park you have access to a wide variety of landscapes. Be prepared to spot huge canyons, beautiful palm tree oases and unique sandstone formations.
The best way to see Isalo National Park is with a guided tour. Many people choose to camp overnight to enhance the once-in-a-lifetime experience. The starry sky here is magical due to the absence of light pollution.
5. Lake Malawi – Malawi, Tanzania & Mozambique
One of the largest bodies of water in Africa is Lake Malawi. The name already suggests, it lies for a large part within the boundaries of Malawi† The lake also extends to the lands Tanzania en Mozambique† If you want to get a good look at Lake Malawi, visit Lake Malawi National Park, located on the south side of the lake itself.
There are miles of hiking trails in the park. There are also numerous vantage points where you can admire the lake and take spectacular photos, especially at sunset.
6. Etosha National Park – Namibia
The second largest game reserve in Namibia is the Etosha National Park. It is made around the Etosha salt pan where many animals congregate. This makes the national park a spectacular place to see wildlife.
Be sure to bring binoculars as you can spot zebras, springbok, lions, giraffes, elephants and more. There are three rest camps designated for visitor accommodation so you can see these amazing animals 24/7.
7. Lalibela – Ethiopia
The city of Lalibela in Ethiopia is known as a pilgrimage town. Lalibela has 11 monolithic rock-hewn churches. Each and every one of them is fascinating to explore. Most of the inhabitants are Egyptian Orthodox Christians and most of the churches were built in the 12th and 13th centuries.
If you only have time for a tour of one church in Lalibela, choose Bet Giyorgis. This church is shaped like a cross and is spectacularly carved entirely out of the rock.
8. Virunga National Park – DR Congo
Near the eastern border of the Democratic Republic of the Congo Virunga National Park is just minutes from Uganda. Virunga was founded in 1925 by the Belgian King Albert. It was Africa's very first national park. While poaching was a serious problem in the park in the past, it is now a growing tourist destination.
The Virunga National Park is most famous for its mountain gorillas. You can also see the Tongo Chimpanzees or even trek to the top of Nyiragongo Volcano. Those who get up early or go out at night can even see the world's largest lava lake glow.
9. Fish River Canyon – Namibia
The incredible Fish River Canyon in SouthNamibia is one of the world's largest canyons. It's a spectacular, breathtaking scene to behold. As one of Africa's natural wonders, Fish River Canyon is one of the country's most popular attractions.
You can hike along the Fish River Canyon Trail if you're up for an adventure. You can also take a nice panoramic flight to admire the multicolored rock canyon.
10. Merzouga – Morocco
Although Merzouga is a small village, it is a popular destination for travelers in Morocco† Located in the Sahara Desert, Merzouga is surrounded by huge sand dunes known as the Erg Chebbi. Much of the local population is Berber, a group that is traditionally nomadic.
Book a camel safari through the dunes to see the traditional Berber lifestyle. In addition to seeing the nomadic desert lifestyle, you can bird watch in the spring. In the spring a wide variety of birds migrate through the area.
11. Black River Gorges NP – Mauritius
Another of the incredible islands in the Indian Ocean, located just off the east coast of Africa, is Mauritius† Mauritius is known for its beaches and tropical weather. It is also home to the beautiful Black River Gorges National Park.
The park is relatively new, having been established in 1994 to protect the island's natural beauty. During your visit you can walk along beautiful trails. There is a wide variety of native wildlife to see. There are also several beautiful waterfalls to discover.
12. Mount Kilimanjaro – Tanzania
In the far north of Tanzania, near the Kenyan border, is the famous Kilimanjaro. Its summit is the highest in Africa and the highest freestanding mountain in the world. For many travelers, Mount Kilimanjaro is a bucketlist. item to check off.
The very fit among us can climb to the top of Kilimanjaro. There are also other ways to explore the area. There are several shorter, easier hikes around the base of the mountain. Around the mountain are some beautiful waterfalls and many great landscapes to admire.
13. Praslin – Seychelles
Praslin is the second largest of the tropical islands of the Seychelles† The island is dotted with luxury resorts. The two main attractions on the island are Anse Lazio and the Vallée de Mai Nature Reserve. Anse Lazio is a beautiful beach with clear waters and great snorkeling opportunities.
The Vallée de Mai Nature Reserve is a well-preserved palm grove. It serves as home to numerous reptiles and birds, including the very rare Seychelles Black Parrot.
14. Okavango Delta – Botswana
Also Botswana has beautiful nature reserves. Where the Okavango River meets the Kalahari River basin, you'll find the Okavango Delta. The delta is breathtaking to see. Due to the water source, it is almost always surrounded by wildlife. The Okavango Delta is a popular place for safaris and you can also enjoy some fantastic scenery.
A fantastic and unforgettable way to explore the Okavango Delta is by plane. This is the perfect yet precious way to see the Okavango River and wildlife.
15. Bwindi National Park – Uganda
If you are interested in seeing rare wildlife then you must visit Bwindi National Park Uganda definitely on your list of must-sees in Africa. You do need a permit from the Uganda Wildlife Authority for this. With a permit you can go to both Buhoma and Nkoringo and kayak on beautiful lakes.
However, the main attraction is gorilla tracking. The Bwindi Impenetrable Forest is one of the best places in the world to see mountain gorillas in their natural habitat.
16. Kruger National Park – South Africa
The most famous of the many parks in South Africa is the Kruger National Park. The park is named after former South African President Paul Kruger. The park has three main goals: conservation, education, and tourism. It is possible to purchase a permit to explore the park yourself. Still, most visitors prefer to join a guided tour or safari.
One of the top attractions of the Kruger National Park is the Crocodile River lookout. The Iron Age village known as Masorini. Here you will usually find an abundance of the Big Five: lions, buffalo, rhinoceros, African elephants and leopards.
17. Marrakesh – Morocco
After Rabat and Casablanca, Marrakech is the largest city in Morocco† They are the country's most popular destinations as it is such an exciting city with an ancient history and amazing architecture. The historic quarter of Marrakech is called the Medina.
The main square is the bustling Djemaa El-Fna. The square is known for its snake charmers and acrobats, which you can watch as you stroll through shops and snack on local culinary delights. You can also visit souks or open-air markets, then relax in a local hammam or spa.
18. Luxor – Egypt
The ancient city of Luxor in Egypt is bisected by the Nile River. On the east bank you will find the famous Luxor Temple and unique museums such as the Luxor Museum and the Mummy Museum.
Across the Nile in the West Bank, you can explore both the Valley of the Kings and the Valley of the Queens. The Valley of the Kings is one of the most iconic destinations in Africa. It served as the burial place of many Egyptian kings.
19. Ngorongoro Conservation Area – Tanzania
The nature reserve known as the Ngorongoro Conservation Area is one of the many attractions of Tanzania† The area is named after the Ngorongoro Crater, a volcanic caldera in the center of the reserve. The crater is a highlight, as is the steep canyon called Oldupai Gorge.
The protected area is one of the best places to visit in Africa for nature lovers. Some of the animals you may spot during your visit are the African buffalo, black rhinoceros, hippopotamus, blue wildebeest and even the occasional Tanzanian cheetah.
20. Cape Town – South Africa
The capital of South Africa is Cape Town. Cape Town is an extraordinary, historic and vibrant city named after its location on the Cape of Good Hope. To learn the history of Cape Town, you have to visit incredible sights. For example, the colorful houses in the Bo-Kaap and Robben Island districts, where political prisoners such as Nelson Mandela were once held.
One of the main natural attractions is Table Mountain. Table Mountain offers breathtaking views over the Cape of Good Hope and the sprawling city. You can climb Table Mountain or take a ride on the cable cars.
21. Masai Mara National Reserve – Kenya
Africa is inhabited by many different peoples, but few are as fascinating as the Masai. This group owns the Masai Mara National Reserve in southern Kenya† Every year thousands of tourists come to explore the landscape and wildlife.
In addition to seeing everything from rhinoceroses to lions, visit a local village to learn about Masai Mara culture, cuisine, customs, and clothing.
22. Giza Necropolis – Egypt
If you've always been in the pyramids Egypt Then make Giza your next travel destination. Giza is the gateway to Egypt's most iconic structures, and it is very close to the city of Cairo. While in Giza, you can step inside the Great Pyramid of Khufu. It is the last surviving structure of the Seven Ancient Wonders of the World.
You can also visit the Sphinx, several smaller pyramids and some incredible museums. The museums help explain the role of these pyramids and their significance in Egyptian history.
23. Victoria Falls – Zambia & Zimbabwe
Right on the border between Zambia en Zimbabwe lies Victoria Falls, an incredible waterfall on the Zambezi River. In Zimbabwe, both the falls and the surrounding town are known as Victoria Falls. Across the border into Zambia, the falls are called Mosi-oa-Tunya.
From December to March, the falls are more dramatic as it is also the rainy season. Besides admiring the view, you can also enjoy Victoria Falls by canoeing or rafting. Taking a romantic sunset cruise under the falls is also very popular.
24. Serengeti National Park – Tanzania
We close this great bucket list with the Serengeti. In NortheastTanzania The Serengeti National Park is one of the most incredible protected areas in Africa. The name Serengeti means endless plains, and that's exactly what you'll find in the park. Each year, more than a million wildebeest and more than 200.000 zebras roam the plains.
When you visit the Serengeti National Park, you can see wildlife such as cheetahs, lions, leopards, giraffes, buffalo, gazelles and many more. Hot air balloon rides and photo safaris are both incredible ways to get the most out of the Serengeti.
Hey Björn, 24 is indeed not enough for this beautiful continent but hey, you have to start somewhere right? I'm certainly open to expanding the list so feel free to provide pieces of text and photos and I'll make sure it's in order.
What a challenge to compile a list of only 24 must sees. I can name a few more that should not be skipped. Chobe National Park is perhaps the most beautiful and promising national park in Africa. With their largest population of African elephants.
South Luangwa National Park in Zambia is also a paradise and one of the best places to spot leopards in Africa.
Or how about the Makgadikgadi salt pans in Botswana, a salt pan that is as wide as Portugal at its widest. You can see the curvature of the earth here on a clear day!
Looks like there are still plenty of beautiful destinations in Africa that we haven't seen yet. Thanks for the list!
Thanks for your addition, Kristel!
Jaaa Lalibela, for those who want to read even more about this, check: https://reizenethiopie.nl/lalibela/