Maybe you have visions of wildebeests stampeding across a dusty plain. Maybe you’d prefer the gleaming spires and skyscrapers of a contemporary city. Whatever your reasons for considering a trip to Africa, here are just nine places that are worth the travel and the airfare.
1. Giza, Egypt
Some people might associate Egypt with big cities like Cairo and Alexandria, but Giza is where the magic happens. Home to everything from the Great Sphinx to the Great Pyramid of Giza, it’s a place where history is alive and well, and you can practically feel the influence of long-dead pharaohs over their ancient strongholds. You’ll definitely want to visit Giza if you’re looking for a once-in-a-lifetime vacation.
2. Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
You’ve never seen animals quite like this! Serengeti National Park is one of the most popular safari destinations in the world, so whether you’re hoping to see lions, cheetahs, rhinos or zebra, this is the place to do it. Just make sure that you follow all of the park’s rules and regulations! You don’t want your hat to get eaten by a passing hippo.
3. Nairobi, Kenya
Are you tired of sweating on safaris? Enjoy a more modern landscape with a visit to Nairobi. Boasting shops, restaurants, museums and art galleries as far as the eye can see, it more than lives up to its translated name of “Cool Water.” It’s a gentle stream of civility in the middle of some of Africa’s harshest landscapes.
4. Rabat, Morocco
Considered one of the four “imperial cities” of Morocco, Rabat is filled with landmarks that have both historic and cultural value. From crumbling mosques to the ancient ruins of long-abandoned defense towers, it’s a place where the past can still be seen everywhere. It’s not bad when it comes to amenities, either; it’s a city filled with all of the conveniences of modern living. Book a tour with a company like Come to the Sahara to experience it all.
5. Cape Town, South Africa
Cape Town is a “melting pot” of a city where cultures from all over Africa come together to share music, art, food and fashion. Enjoy tasty dishes from exotic restaurants; visit museums that immortalize weapons and artifacts from bygone eras; wander among the sprawling street markets for vacation souvenirs. Cape Town has it all!
6. Makgadikgadi Pans National Park, Botswana
Home to some of the most impressive salt flats in the world, the Makgadikgadi Pans have to be seen to be believed. Their dry, cracked landscapes used to be the location of the mighty Lake Makgadikgadi, but years of drought and erosion have transformed them to a place of rugged desert beauty. You’ll definitely want to bring your camera to these salt flats.
7. Selous Game Reserve, Tanzania
Another great place to go on a safari, the Selous Game Reserve will provide just as much “game” as its name implies. In fact, it’s renowned for being home to the “big five” of safari animals: elephant, lion, leopard, rhinoceros and buffalo. If you want to get up close and personal with some of nature’s wildest beasts, try this hot spot in Tanzania.
8. Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
Victoria Falls is so massive that it spans the border of two countries. The good news it that you don’t have to visit both! Just take a trip to a town called “Victoria Falls” in Zimbabwe. It will lead you directly to the thundering, awe-inspiring power of one of the world’s largest waterfalls.
9. Kampala, Uganda
Not everyone appreciates the African country of Uganda. However, their loss is your gain. While not as thriving as some of the other destinations on this list, Kampala still boasts things like museums, cathedrals and even tombs where you can take tours to learn more about its lost indigenous population. It’s not a bad place for a vacation at all, so don’t be afraid to try a city that might not be mentioned in your guidebook!
These are just a few of the most breathtaking locations in Africa. Whether you’d prefer a modern vacation in a big city or a rugged getaway across the desert, Africa has something for you!