By 1900, much of the African continent was already appealing to seven different European countries and their nationals. While the interest then was majorly for the purposes of control, and exploiting resources, the same magical and natural beauty that met them, keeps inviting millions of tourists to the continent every year.
This magic, the vast natural landscapes, breathtakingly beautiful flora and fauna and the warm nature of the inhabitants of the continent, easily makes it one of the great safari destinations in the world.
Here is a close look some top tours in Africa that you should experience at least once in a lifetime.
1. Namibia and Botswana Tour
Namibia is otherworldly beautiful while Botswana presents the best of game viewing in private reserves, all of which are thrilling scenes to experience. The combination of these two into a single safari easily sums up a tantalizing tour of Southern Africa.
Some of the great sights in Namibia are the Kalahari Desert with its approximately 5000 endemic plant species, the enchanting 160-kilometre long and 27-kilometre wide River Canyon and the beach resort of Swakopmund with its expansive sandy beaches.
While Botswana stands out with its calm reserves that teem with wildlife, the Chobe River, which is a great location for an African river cruise, is just as thrilling. Other locations in Botswana that together, constitute this great safari route include the astonishing Kubu Island, Makgadikgadi Pans, which are the largest salt pans in the world and the Kgalagadi Trans-Frontier National Park with all its almost 4 million hectares of natural beauty.
2. The Mara Serengeti tour
The Maasai Mara National Reserve in South Western Kenya offers 151,000 hectares of breathtakingly beautiful vistas and abundant wildlife in endless plains. The great migration that involves some two million wildebeest, zebras, lions every year, happens here! It is a spectacle like no other. Captivating to the observer, but presenting the raw struggles wild animals endure to survive.
The Serengeti National Park in Tanzania is the other half of the coin that is the Mara Serengeti Ecosystem. This expansive savannah in North Western Tanzania is about 1.5 million hectares of majorly African grassland savannah. Like the Mara, the chances of spotting the big five is more real here than in any other location in Africa.
3. Gorilla Trekking Tour in Uganda
Bwindi Impenetrable Forest Park in South Western Uganda is home to the remaining mountain gorillas in the world. The 33,000-hectare park, a strip of steep mountains enveloped in a bushy and steamy jungle, is one of the most ancient habitats in Africa, probably surviving even the last Ice Age.
It has a very broad altitude span that ranges from about 1100 meters to 2600 meters. This unique feature, coupled with its antiquity, has resulted in an unbelievably wide diversity of plant and animal species.
It is home to some 120 mammal species and 350 bird species. The showstopper however, remains the 350 mountain gorillas that inhabit this stretch. The trek within the forest to track these stunning apes is the highlight of any visit to Uganda.
4. Cape Town to Tanzania by train
For a long time, the train was the glamorous means of travel, and then things changed. In Africa however, you can still explore the best of South Africa, Zambia, Zimbabwe and Tanzania, entirely by train. This 22-day tour takes you through the best of Southern Africa with the possible sighting of the Big 5, great landscapes and wondrous sites as well as a beach getaway in the exotic tropic island of Zanzibar.
Some of the highlights of this once-in-a-lifetime tour are the vibrant South African city of Cape Town and the captivating Table Mountain nearby, a leisure tour of the fascinating Victoria Falls as well as scuba diving and snorkelling in the Indian Ocean.
The culmination of the tour and especially the relaxing bit on the powder-soft sands of the Zanzibar beaches make it an outstanding experience.
Africa is full of epic promise. The safari experiences are as delightful as they are diverse and, there is a lot to see and do. While wild animals now remain confined in parks, reserves and conservancies, decent sighting is still a walk in the park, literally. Moreover, the warm and welcoming nature of the local people will set even the most edgy person at ease. And, there is a lot to learn from the local cultures.
Common, go ahead and experience any or all of these top tours in Africa.