15 Most Beautiful Places in Africa To Visit
If there is one thing that strikes at the mention of Africa it is its incredible wilderness. Exquisite wildlife, birds, flora and fauna, whose habitats have been converted into some of the most celebrated national parks of the world, follow up. On the cultural front, there is a potpourri of heritage, lifestyles and customs; Africa is such a stunner! Home to one of the largest deserts, a contrast of colorful and rustic locales, untouched islands and more, there is nothing that this continent does not have to boast of when it comes to natural beauty. And if you always complained how this was such an undeveloped mainland, you will be thankful after reading this list of the most beautiful places in Africa!
1. Mount Kilimanjaro – to experience nature’s grandeur
An eternal patent on the list of top 10 tourist attractions in Africa, Mount Kilimanjaro beckons not only mountaineering enthusiasts but even admirers of natural beauty. The highest mountain in the continent and the highest dormant volcano outside South America, this gem justifies the incredibility of nature. Another fabulous feature of this park is the Mt Kilimanjaro National Park which is one of the most visited parks in the nation. The park is visited not just for its stunning wildlife but even the views of this colossal mountain.
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2. Kruger National Park – 2 million hectares of incredibility
Hands down, one of the most beautiful places in Africa, the Kruger National Park is home to some of the best exquisite wildlife in the world. Adventurous, gorgeous, stunning are just some adjectives to describe this park. You’ve got to have a firsthand experience to understand this. This once in a lifetime rendezvous is certain to account for a cherishing encounter with delightful birds, flora and fauna, reptiles, animals, among some other thrilling consequences. Sprawling across a mind-blowing 2 million hectares, the park proclaims that this is where you get to see the real Africa!
Check Out: Things to do in Kruger National Park
3. Robben Island – of insightful UNESCO World Heritage Sites
On your forage of places in Africa list, you must have come across this eyeful of an island several times, and rightly so. Nestled in the territory of the Cape Town, the Robben Island derives its name from the Dutch word for "Seal". Donning an oval shape this island was used as a prison, back in the 17th and 18th century. Some administrative buildings, including the prison, one that was used as a hospital to serve unacceptable groups of societies and even the avenues that served as a crucial military base have obtained the island a place in the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
4. Serengeti - live Discovery Channel action
There are many more reasons contributing to Serengeti’s being as one of the most beautiful places in Africa other than awestriking natural beauty. Perched amidst the countries, Tanzania and Kenya, this ecosystem is what reckons to the great migration Tanzania. It hosts "the largest terrestrial mammal migration in the world". On your exploration, here you are bound to encounter some seventy-odd large mammals and some magnificently beautiful five hundred species of birds. Making a natural habitat for all these precious lives are the endless grasslands stretching into infinity. Look forward to some live Discovery Channel action!
5. Victoria Falls, Zambia and Zimbabwe - one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World
One of the seven natural wonders of the world, the Victoria Falls add to the charm of not one but two African countries of Zambia and Zimbabwe. The name is very divergent of what a conventional African name would sound like. This is so because the falls get its name from a white man who spotted them. He happens to be the first white man to do so! The falls were rightly monikered as Mosi-oa-Tunya or ‘The Smoke that Thunders’ by the local Kololo tribe. Staying true to this moniker the falls don’t cease to entice with their grandeur.
6. Sahara Desert – largest desert adventures await
Back in school, while learning the names of places in Africa; deserts to be precise, the Sahara Desert was engraved in our memories for being one of the largest deserts in the world. Sahara means greatest in Arabic, and there is no doubt about how rightly this name fits the desert. Almost mapping out at the size of the USA, this desert is further divided into six regions for geographical convenience. The best places to experience some adventures of this mammoth natural spectacle are Morocco, Egypt and Tunisia. Magical campfire, poignant camel rides, and thrilling 4WD stimulation await!
7. Bo-Kaap, Cape Town – a hopscotch of colors
If you are a colorful person, you are ought to love Bo-Kaap. But even if you are not, the colors here are certain to add some hues to your life. It was previously known as the Malay Quarter owing to its being as a preceding settlement of the Malay population that still exists in Cape Town. That being said, the multi-ethnicity adds to the allure of the place. The highlight of this region is a fabulous museum displaying everything from the oldest house in the area to works of skilled tailors and other craftsmen.
8. Avenue of the Baobabs, Madagascar – 800-year-old trees and magical sunsets
As if a shot straight out of the much-animated movie Madagascar, Avenue of the Baobabs features marvelous baobabs trees that lend to the beauty of this destination. Uneven dirt roads beautifully contrasting the adjoining vegetation under the azure sky are the main characteristics that draw people here. The fact that these trees are 800 years old elevate the allure the avenue as well as rendering to its moniker as ‘renala’ that literally translates to “mother of the forest”. Once the evening draws, you are bound to witness one magical sunset of your life!
9. Lake Abbe, Djibouti and Ethiopia – where you summon to nature
Lake Abbe or the Lake Abhe Bad is a breathtaking saltwater lake that divides the countries of Djibouti and Ethiopia. It is a part of the chain comprising six other lakes of Africa. A geographical 0pheneomena of three pieces of Earth’s crust here, each pulling away from a central point, though not all at the same speed; is a major crowd-puller of this lake. There are hot springs too in this region featuring absolutely no traces of urbanization. No Gps, no signs, no marks, just trusting the nature and your heart!
10. Lake Malawi – the lake of stars
This is one place where breathtaking panoramas everywhere you see are a common thing! The lake with its pristine waters, virgin banks, and a blanket of mountains all around is certainly a heartthrob! So much so that, Lake Malawi was also referred to as ‘Lake of Stars’ by David Livingstone. This was when he spotted a bunch of fisherman in the lake with lamps on their boats that gave an illusion of stars. And then of course, given its location in Africa there is wildlife, crocodiles, delicate variety of fish found in and around the lake!
11. Sidi Bou Said – for some Greek goodness in Africa
Ever fancied a trip to the popular Greek islands of Santorini or Mykonos? Worry not, Africa bequeaths you the same flavor at the Sidi Bou Said town of Tunisia. Characteristic white walls, blue domes, and beautiful views of the sea are what you can look forward to here. The town derives its name from a religious figure who lived here, Abou Said ibn Khalef ibn Yahia al-Tamimi al-Baji! Another feature of this town are the myriad artists here, that have the town being tagged as an artist’s town.
12. Bandiagara, Mali – expect the unexpected
There are many poor places in Africa, that remain untouched from development and urbanization, deprived of all the modern facilities. The Bandiagara is one such place. So much so that the name of the town itself extends to what refers to a large eating bowl in which the community is served meat. Indeed, a very rustic place that has a designated spot on this list of most beautiful places in Africa. The earthen architecture, set on steep cliffs like The Cliff of Bandiagara, of the Dogon villages is what makes this place beautiful despite all its dearth.
13. Seychelles – honeymooners’ paradise
A honeymooners’ go to choice being one of the safest places to visit in Africa, Seychelles is a little piece of paradise on earth. Its soft sandy beaches, crystalline waters and the sun that plays peek-a-boo, are just enough reasons to get here already. Ecotourism is another major lure of Seychelles owing to a plethora of tropic birds, turtles, and birds. Fabulous watersports including snorkeling, scuba diving and the likes are a pleasure to indulge in, given the comforting warm temperatures of the waters here. Throw in some luxury resorts and you are in for one leisurely vacation of your life!
Check Out: Best Resorts in Seychelles
14. Saadian Tombs, Morocco - amazing architecture and historical significance
Counted as one of the most beautiful places in Africa to live, Morocco does not cease to bestow sensory delights with its mélange of cultures - Arabic, Berberian and African. Intricate detailing, eclectic blue and white designs, rustic décor and a surfeit of flavorsome spices are few things that first come to my mind, when I think Morocco. But speaking of beautiful places in Morocco, the Saadian Tombs are an absolute winner in every way. Situated in Marrakesh, these tombs date back to the 15th-16th century. This mausoleum with its wonderful architecture and historical significance is certain to leave you awestruck!
15. Zanzibar, Tanzania – a gateway to unworldly pleasures
Popular as Tanzania’s spice island, Zanzibar is located on Africa’s eastern coast. Having similar characteristics of white sandy beaches and clear waters like Seychelles, this island holds evident influences from its history of being a Portuguese colony. As you begin to explore Zanzibar and take the off beaten path, you are likely to encounter several tiny, hidden islands too. Some quaint accommodation properties dominate the hotels and resorts scene here. Plenty of beaches offering watersports keep the entertainment factor high. Some off-road adventures, flea markets, and great food make this place an allrounder!
This was my take on the most beautiful places in Africa. Do you think I missed out on any? Let us know in the comments section below!