With its expansive landscapes, vibrant cultures, and robust animal life, Africa boasts a little bit of everything for its travelers. In truth, you should expect nothing less from the world’s second-largest continent. It is an adventure lover’s playground, a newlywed’s paradise, a child’s fondest memories; Africa is the experience of a lifetime waiting to happen.
So if you’re planning a trip in this wondrous continent, then you’re in luck thanks to this breakdown of how to conquer the great African holiday experience one iconic activity at a time.
1. Go on Safari
Teeming with abundant diverse wildlife freely roaming in their natural habitats, Africa is the undisputed home of the safari. There are so many countries to choose from and you can choose simply based on what kind of animals you’d like to see. From thrilling game drives through a landscape full of lions, elephants, buffalos, leopards, and rhinos (the big five) to spotting hundreds of distinct bird species and even amazing underwater adventures while swimming with sharks, this will without a doubt be a trip of a lifetime.
2. Witness the Great Migration
A safari experience alone warrants a top spot on any traveler’s bucket list, but to be able to witness what is known as the “World Cup of Wildlife” is truly a special moment. This yearly event sees a breathtaking spectacle of millions of wildebeests, zebras, and gazelles as they embark on a literal journey to greener pastures from the endless rolling plains of Tanzania’s Serengeti to the wondrous landscapes of Kenya’s Masai Mara reserve. Since the Great Migration only occurs in these two countries, you’re probably wondering what to go for — Kenya vs. Tanzania? While they are both fantastic destinations, your choice will ultimately come down to the time of year of your visit and your travel preferences.
3. Set time aside to stay in Ethiopia
Ethiopia is a completely different world, one with so many mind-blowing sights and a certain mystic ambiance that leaves you incredibly awed and humbled. It is the birthplace of coffee so you can already expect the coffee here to be simply one-of-a-kind. Ethiopians even have a ceremony for how they prepare and consume their coffee. As a country with nine UNESCO World Heritage sites, Ethiopia definitely is home to one of the lowest places on earth, giant obelisks reminiscent of an ancient and glorious empire, thundering waterfalls, rock-hewn churches, and what is believed to be the biblical “Ark of the Covenant” among many others. You can easily schedule day trips from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia’s sprawling capital city, and look forward to an unforgettable time.
4. Get a Glimpse of the Desert Life
If you’re looking to visit countries in northern Africa, then you definitely have to add “seeing that desert life” on your list. Morocco and Egypt are amazing destinations, but if you’re looking to go down the less-traveled path, then consider going to Mauritania. This country has so many offerings that its often hard to pick an all-inclusive itinerary. Nevertheless, you can check out this “Mauritania things to do” list to get you started.
5. Experience Zanzibar!
Surrounded by both the Atlantic and Indian Oceans, Africa boasts some of the world’s most stunning coastlines and thrilling beach destinations. And while there are many contenders, Zanzibar easily takes the crown. It’s not just the fine white sand beaches and the clear turquoise ocean waters, but that it is such a unique destination that it feels like a completely different beach experience. In addition to the usual diving, snorkeling, kitesurfing, fishing, swimming, and boat cruises, Zanzibar also boasts a rich cultural history as seen in its mix Arabian, African, and Indian heritage, rare and fascinating wildlife, spice plantations and a vibrant nightlife unlike any other. If you have to chance to visit only one beach destination in Africa, let Zanzibar be among your top considerations.
6. Visit the famous Victoria Falls
Straddling the countries of Zambia and Zimbabwe, Victoria Falls is the ultimate destination of you’re looking for that adrenaline rush. With a well-deserved spot among the Seven Natural Wonders of the World, visitors are in for an exhilarating outdoor adventure of a lifetime as they explore various scenic terrains, take a dip in the Devil’s Pool, kayak along the mighty Zambezi River or swing across a 95-meter gorge. It’s the stuff of dreams for the outdoor adventure lover.
While visiting any or all of these destinations, you will also come across some of the most friendly and hospitable people on the planet, offering everything from a welcoming smile to a warm meal inside their homes.
From modern cities to vast deserts, tropical rainforests, incredible wildlife parks, and cloud-piercing mountains, the things to do while on Holiday in Africa are endless and endlessly fun too — definitely something for your wishlist this new year.