For the visitor to the great and wondrous continent of Africa, there exists a great variety of natural and man-made landmarks that highlight the beauty and wonder of the birthplace of civilisation. Though this list is by far from the be-all end-all of a traveller’s potential experience on this continent, it seeks to highlight some of the places that have made and will make Africa a place of wonder and adventure, now and in the future.
As part of the Ngorongoro conservation area, it is a UNESCO world heritage site located in the crater highlands of Tanzania. Though not widely known, it is considered to be the largest unbroken caldera in the world and it bears the honour of being considered Africa’s Garden of Eden. With its crater being estimated at 19Km across and two thousand metres above the caldera floor, it is home for approximately thirty thousand animals.
Located in Botswana, it is a large inland delta that has formed as a result of the Okavango River reaching a tectonic trough. It is the largest inland delta in the world, created from flooding that occurs primarily in the months of July and August. It is a world heritage site that is estimated to be home to close to 200,000 animals.
Serengeti National Park
As a national park, it is located in the Mara and Simiyu regions of Tanzania. It is most well-known for the annual Serengeti migration that involves the mass movement of an estimated 1.5 million wildebeests, 250,000 Zebras and associated predators through Tanzania and Kenya. It is considered to be one of the most spectacular events in the world.
Though originating in Ethiopia and Uganda, the Nile River is most commonly associated with Egypt. As one of the longest rivers in the world, it stretches over 6,650 kilometres through ten countries. It sustained early Egyptian civilization, allowing it to become a wonder of the ancient world.
Located on the border of Zambia and Zimbabwe, it flows from the Zambezi River. This tourist attraction is distinguished by the fact that it has more Zimbabwean and Zambian visitors than foreign ones. The waterfall is formed as a result of the Zambezi River encountering the Victoria Falls gorge.
The Ruins of Carthage
Located in Tunisia, the city of Carthage was the heart of a vast Phoenician trading empire that controlled many parts of the Mediterranean. At one time their merchant fleet and military were by far the most superior the ancient world had ever seen. Known through the actions of the great Carthaginian army general, Hannibal Barca, they fought three wars with Rome that ultimately resulted in their annihilation.
Consisting of three volcanic cones known as Kibo, Mawenzi and Shira, it is located in Tanzania. With the exception of Mount Everest, it is one of the most widely known mountains in the world, with its highest peak standing at nearly six thousand metres. It is home to enormous biodiversity and there are seven official trekking routes for those who wish to climb it.
Analamazaotra Special Reserve
Part of the Andasibe-Mantadia National Park in Madagascar, it is considered one of the most under explored wonders of Africa. Due to the fact that tourism has not yet fully developed in the island nation, it is known as having some of the world’s most biologically diverse areas. Located several hours away from the capital, the reserve is predicted to be one of the world’s best destinations in coming years for wildlife and ecotourism.
The Temples of Abu Simbel
Located in the south of Egypt, they consist of the Great Temple of Ramesses II and the small temple of Nefertari. Carved almost three thousand years ago, they were created by Pharaoh Rameses II, who wanted to show the grandeur of his rule, combined with the desire to put fear into the hearts of his enemies.
Pyramids of Giza/Giza Necropolis
Consisting of six pyramids, they are one of the oldest wonders in the world and are the last remaining wonder of the Seven Wonders of the ancient world. Located on the Giza plateau on the outskirts of Cairo, Egypt, it consists of several structures. These include the three great pyramids, the sphinx as well as cemeteries, a workers’village and a place for the manufacture of building materials.