For many people, the thought of visiting Africa is still rather daunting which I think is SO very sad. Yes, many African countries have struggled with war and conflict over the years but that shouldn't put you off visiting this magical continent. It is a huge continent with something for everyone.
The northern part of the continent boasts bustling night markets and delicious food, unending historical sights and fantastic scuba diving and snorkelling.
Sub-Sahara Africa though is where the real magic happens in my opinion. The continent turns from dry, arid, sandy landscapes to a lush, green, tropical climate. It still offers plenty of delicious food, history and plenty of culture. There are also some of the most beautiful beaches in the world and plenty of diving opportunities. But the stand out attraction of Africa is the wildlife, and rightly so. From lions to penguins, there really is something for any animal lover!
There are a few countries that really stand out for those interested in wildlife photography. Here are my top 5 countries you SHOULD visit and soon!
Number 5) South Africa - Unfortunately, people have formed many opinions about this beautiful country but the truth is South Africa is one of the most affordable and best value safari destinations. If you do your research you can stay at a lodge that is involved in real conservation efforts. The benefit of staying in a conservancy means that you will not see loads of other people and you will get a much more exclusive feeling to your safari. It's still worth visiting Kruger National Park particularly the southern part so you can see lion, elephant and hopefully even rhino! Whilst up there spend a day doing the panorama route, it's well worth it!
If you have time, head down to the Capes in the South of the country so you can see penguins. Also if you are into wine, take a few days to enjoy the wine region in the South West.
Number 4) Tanzania - Famous for the Serengeti, Tanzania is the place to visit if you like travelling. Split into two safari circuits, the southern circuit can be much quieter if you want to get away from the crowds. But the northern circuit is home to the spectacular Wildebeest Migration. As well as the Serengeti consider visiting Lake Manyara and Tarangire for the change in topography. After your action-packed safari, why not hop over to the paradise island of Zanzibar where you can chill out and/or go swimming with wild dolphins.
Number 3) Zimbabwe - If you want to see wild dogs, get yourself to Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe's largest game reserve. Home to over 40,000 elephants, Hwange is also a sanctuary for lion, giraffe, zebra and much more! Mana Pools is also high on my list of must-visit places as the natural beauty of the place is unprecedented. It is also one of the only places on the planet you can regularly see elephants standing up on their back legs! And don't miss out on the opportunity to visit the thundering Victoria Falls whilst in Zimbabwe!
Number 2) Uganda - Home to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest where you can see Gorillas and Kibale Forest where you can see Chimps, Uganda is a truly special place. However, that is not all it has to offer! You can visit Murchison Falls or Queen Elizabeth Park to see Lions, Elephants, Leopards and other "safari" animals. You can also take a swamp ride in Mabamba to see the elusive Shoebill. Uganda has it all!
Number 1) Kenya - If you want the real African Safari experience you just can not beat the origin of safari, Kenya. This country is truly beautiful and so are the people! You can experience such different landscapes all within the same country. Amboseli - the land of giants is very dry and dusty and is home to some of the biggest elephants in the world. Samburu is also very dusty and HOT but also has lush green areas. Nairobi National Park is unique in the fact that it is surrounded by the bustling and growing urban city. Lake Nakuru is a true gem, green and beautiful! And of course, we must not forget the Masai Mara with its vast open savannahs that seem to never end!
Kenya also has MANY other wildlife hotspots you can visit like Tsavo East and Tsavo West, Mount Kenya and Aberdare.
And you can round up your African experience by chilling out on one of Mombasa's stunning beaches like Diani.
I've only listed my top 5 but there is also:
Botswana - Chobe National Park and the Okavango Delta
Zambia -South Luangwa National Park, Zambezi National Park and their side of Victoria Falls
Nambia - Etosha National Park and Damaraland
There are also many. many, MANY, other places to visit in Africa. Africa IS WORTH VISITING AND SOON! So take the leap of faith and make your next holiday and African one!
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