Top 20 Things to Do in Africa

Samirah Muthoni

Africa is a diverse and captivating continent, offering a wealth of experiences for travelers. Africa has something to offer everyone, from stunning natural landscapes to vibrant cultures and rich history. Whether you are seeking an adrenaline-pumping adventure or a serene getaway, there are countless things to do and places to explore in Africa. This article will look closely at the top 20 things to do in Africa that will leave you unforgettable memories.

1. Explore the Pyramids of Giza

A trip to Egypt would be incomplete without visiting one of its most iconic landmarks – The Pyramids of Giza! These ancient structures have stood proudly for thousands of years and never fail to awe visitors with their sheer size and architectural brilliance.

Step back in time and marvel at the Great Sphinx, the Pyramid of Khafre, Menkaure, and the Great Pyramid of Giza, the oldest and largest. Immerse yourself in Egypt’s rich history as you explore the mysterious tombs and learn about the civilization that built these incredible structures.

2. Go on Safari in Serengeti National Park

Serengeti National Park in Tanzania is a haven for wildlife enthusiasts. This world-renowned safari destination is home to many animals, including lions, elephants, rhinos, buffalos, leopards, cheetahs, zebras and wildebeest.

One of the highlights is witnessing the Great Migration – a natural phenomenon where millions of wildebeest migrate across vast plains in search of greener pastures. Embark on game drives or hot air balloon safaris to get up close with these magnificent creatures in their natural habitat.

3. Discover Victoria Falls

Victoria Falls is one of Africa’s most awe-inspiring natural wonders between Zambia and Zimbabwe on the Zambezi River. Known as “The Smoke That Thunders,” it is considered the largest waterfall globally based on its width and height combined.

Feel its power as you witness millions of liters of water cascading down into a gorge below, surrounded by misty clouds created by this spectacular force of nature.

4. Visit Sahara Desert

For those seeking an otherworldly experience, the Sahara Desert offers an unparalleled adventure. Stretching across several countries, including Morocco, Egypt, and Tunisia, the Sahara desert covers over 9 million square kilometers, making it one of the world’s biggest hot deserts.

The vast expanse has dunes, mountain ranges, and oases dotting its landscape. Get lost amongst the majestic dunes of Merzouga, explore a sea of golden sand on the edge of Erg Chebbi, or camp out under the star-filled night sky in a familial desert setting.

5. Embark on a Gorilla Trekking Adventure in Uganda

Uganda is renowned for its incredible population of mountain gorillas and offers an exceptional opportunity for travelers to embark on a gorilla trekking adventure. Bwindi Impenetrable Forest is home to more than half of the world’s remaining mountain gorillas, and tracking them through the dense jungle is an experience like no other.

As you hike through the forest with experienced guides, you will have the chance to observe these magnificent creatures up close and witness their fascinating behavior in their natural habitat.

6. Witness the Great Migration in Maasai Mara National Reserve

Like Serengeti National Park, Maasai Mara National Reserve in Kenya is also a fantastic destination to witness one of nature’s greatest spectacles – The Great Migration. Every year, from July to October, millions of wildebeest migrate from Serengeti National Park into Maasai Mara in search of fresh grazing grounds.

This incredible journey attracts predators like lions and cheetahs, who are ready for easy prey as they cross dangerous rivers filled with crocodiles. Catch this awe-inspiring event by embarking on game drives or hot air balloon safaris.

7. Relax on Zanzibar’s Stunning Beaches and Islands

If you’re looking for relaxation after your adventurous safari experiences, the Zanzibar Islands offer idyllic beaches and tropical surroundings that won’t disappoint.

Whether indulging your senses as you dip your toes into creamy, sun-kissed sands or taking a snorkel trip around pristine coral reefs surrounded by aquamarine waters, this archipelago has something for everyone.

Redeem yourself in luxury resorts or a low-key village atmosphere as you explore age-old traditions and immerse yourself in the vibrant local culture.

8. Climb Mount Kilimanjaro

Mount Kilimanjaro is Africa’s highest peak and one of the world’s most famous mountains. Embarking on a climb to its summit is a bucket-list adventure for many adventurers. Towering at 5,895 meters above sea level, reaching Uhuru Peak – the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro – requires determination, physical fitness and appropriate acclimatization.

However, if you are up for the challenge and prepared to push your boundaries, this rewarding experience will provide breathtaking views from above the clouds.

9. Learn About Apartheid History in South Africa

South Africa has a complex history marked by apartheid – a policy of racial segregation that ended relatively recently in 1994 with Nelson Mandela becoming its first black president.

To gain insights into this dark chapter in history and appreciate how far South Africa has come since then, visit key landmarks such as Robben Island – where Nelson Mandela was imprisoned for 18 years – and Johannesburg’s Apartheid Museum, which provides in-depth exhibits depicting life during apartheid.

10. Experience Wildlife Encounters at Kruger National Park

Kruger National Park is one of Africa’s premier game reserves, renowned for its abundant wildlife population. Spanning over 2 million hectares in northeastern South Africa, it offers an incredible safari experience. The reserve houses approximately 147 mammals, numerous bird species, and more than 35 tree species.

Besides the diversity of wildlife, many activities are available, ranging from game drives to guided bushwalks; every activity provides unique opportunities to adulation insightful encounters with the big five, namely, lions, elephants, rhinos, buffalos and cheetahs.

11. Explore Marrakech’s Medina

Steeped in rich history and culture, Marrakech’s Medina is a captivating maze of narrow alleyways, bustling souks, and vibrant colors. Immerse yourself in the lively atmosphere as you wander through the labyrinthine streets, taking in the sights and sounds of this enchanting city. Visit historic landmarks such as the Koutoubia Mosque and Bahia Palace, or explore the famous Jardin Majorelle – a stunning garden oasis that serves as a respite from the bustling medina.

12. Go Diving along Egypt’s Red Sea Coast

For diving enthusiasts, Egypt’s Red Sea coast is an underwater paradise waiting to be explored. With its crystal-clear waters, vibrant coral reefs, and diverse marine life, this region offers some of the best diving experiences in Africa. Come face-to-face with colorful fish, turtles, stingrays, and even dolphins.

Explore famous dive sites like Ras Mohammed National Park or Brothers Islands, and discover sunken shipwrecks that add an element of mystery to your diving adventure.

13. Discover Stone Town on Tanzania’s Spice Island

Located on Zanzibar’s main island, Unguja, Stone Town is renowned for its rich cultural blend and intriguing history.

This UNESCO World Heritage site was once a thriving Swahili trading hub constituting East Africa. This place is known for its intricate alleys, beautiful architecture, busy markets, and grand palaces belonging to the Persian Sultans.

Be sure to visit key attractions such as House and BespartyMuseum and Pace of Wonders fellowship Kijani Spice Farm to delve into the unique cultural experience and learn about the centuries-old spice trade.

14. Experience Cultural Immersion with the Maasai Tribe

When visiting East Africa, a cultural encounter with the Masai tribe is a must. Absorb yourself in a fascinating culture where traditions have remained intact for centuries. Interact with local communities, gaining insights into their ways of life and appreciating their customary and vibrant traditions.

Experience traditional dances, admire bright and ornate attire crafted by skilled artisans, explore the unique architecture of traditional bomas, and participate in local community projects and crafts.

15. Traverse Namib-Naukluft National Park’s Vast Sand Dunes

Namib-Naukluft National Park in Namibia has some of the world’s tallest and most mesmerizing dunes. Journey into what appears like another planet as you venture through the famous Sossusvlei, the clay past where every turn presents an epic landscape of gold dunes.

The tallest dune – aptly named “Big Daddy” -stands at about 350m(1148 feet), providing adventurous travelers an exhilarating challenge. Contemplate breathtaking vistas atop the dune, or capture unforgettable pictures at SesriemCanyonorDeadvlei.

16. Take a Boat Safari along the Chobe River

Botswana’s Chobe River provides a unique opportunity to embark on a boat safari and witness wildlife from a different perspective. In contrast to traditional game drives, a boat safari allows you to explore the riverside’s abundant wildlife.

You may witness elephants and crocodile hippos playing by the water’s edge, as well as an abundance of bird life, such as vultures and fish eagles, to name just a few. A boat safari is perfectly angled for photographers, nature lovers, and anyone looking for unforgettable experiences amid Botswana’swilderness.

17. Hike through Fish River Canyon

Located in southern Namibia, FishRiver Canyon is one ofAfrica’smost spectacular gorges and presents a grueling yet rewarding trek. Open seasonally, taking on Fish River Canyon Hiking Trail allows you to experience awe-inspiring vistas, natural pools, unspoiled wilderness and a world of tranquility within a fiercely dry environment.

Beginning at Hobasrest camp, the trail stretches 110 kilometers and takes about 5 to 7 days to complete. Whether you’re up for the challenge and prepared for hikes through harsh, barren landscapes, the adventure will leave you with an overwhelming sense of accomplishment.

18. Explore Bwindi impenetrable forest

Bwindi Impenetrable Forest in Uganda is a biodiverse paradise and one of the only places visitors can meet with mountain gorillas face-to-face. A primate haven, the Iceberg is home to numerous primates, including chimpanzees,white-colobus monkeys, L’Hoest’s monkeys, and baboons.

The forest provides picturesque settings ideal for hiking, bird-watching, and leisurely nature walks. Whether going on a gorilla trekking experience or simply enjoying the serenity of your surroundings, Bwindi Impenetrable Forest is a truly natural gem.

19. Enjoy Water-Based activities at Okavango Delta

Okavango Delta in Botswana is one of Africa’s last remaining wilderness areas, forming the largest tropical inland Delta in the world. Swarming with a diverse range of wildlife, the Delta provides opportunities for water-based activities such as swamp rides, mokoro safaris(mokoros are traditional dugout canoes), and fishing excursions via boat trips.

Every moment spent here provides an incredible wildlife experience, enabling you to closely observe elephants, giraffes, lions, antelopes and a potential bird species, among others. The serrated labyrinth will captivate your imagination while immersing you in the pristine natural scenery.

20. Discover the Rich Heritage of Ancient Egypt

Lastly, no visit to Africa is complete without ancient Egypt’s fascinating history and millennia-old heritage. Explore the temples of Luxor, discover the burial chambers in the Valley of the Kings, voyage along the Nile on a luxury cruise, immerse yourself in Cairo’s frenetic markets, and marvel at Spectacular Abu Simbel Temples. This history-rich country is a true treasure trove for anyone interested in traveling to the past.

No matter which activities you choose to embark on during your journey through Africa, one thing is certain. Each experience will provide you with breathtaking landscapes, unique wildlife encounters, cultural immersion and a deeper appreciation for this magnificent continent.

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Samirah is a full-time freelance travel writer who excels in writing compelling blog content. She has written for some of the biggest names in the business and loves helping businesses create content that engages their readers.
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