My series of Top 10 Africa posts came about when I asked some of my fellow travel bloggers to share their favourite aspects of Africa. They came back with over 50 unique African places, experiences, islands and cities!
What an incredible place Africa is!
To make this list a little bit more manageable I have broken it down into a few different posts featuring 10 incredible places in Africa – resulting in an ultimate Things to do in Africa post at the end!
Today I’m sharing ten of the Best Countries in Africa
Best African Countries
Nominated by Macca Sherifi from An Adventurous World
The Gambia may be the smallest country in Africa but it packs a really big punch. Not many people realise this but the Gambia has some gorgeous golden beaches with hardly any tourists on them. As soon as you step off the beach though you can explore cute fishing villages or wander through the jungle (I think this was my favourite bit!) Also, the food is incredible in the Gambia – Domada, a meat stew cooked with peanuts is to die for. I think it’s worth visiting just for that dish alone!
Nominated by Vanda Mendonça from The Yogi Wanderer
Mozambique is one of the most underrated African countries. But its gorgeous and unspoiled coastline, diverse wildlife, rich culture and traditions, delicious food, and welcoming people make it also one of the most beautiful. I recommend starting your visit to Mozambique in Maputo. Spend at least a couple of days exploring the Mozambican capital and learning about the history and present of the country. One of the highlights of my trip to Mozambique was taking a walking tour of Mafalala, one of the most iconic Maputo neighborhoods. Then head to some of the best beaches in Africa. From Ponta do Ouro, a favorite spot for scuba diving, to Tofo and Barra, or Vilanculos and the idyllic Bazaruto archipelago, there’s no shortage of stunning, pristine beaches to choose from in Mozambique. Or go on an African safari in the spectacular Gorongosa National Park, in the heart of Mozambique.
Nominated by Marysia Maciocha from My Travel Affairs Blog
Benin is a rather unusual destination for the majority of travellers, even those who know Africa very well. It might be underrated but it has everything one may seek. A rich cultural heritage of numerous ethnic groups such as Yoruba and Fon people. Magical legends, cities built entirely on water. A sad slavery history and strong voodoo traditions. The best attraction being the Pendjari National Park which is part of WAP (W-Arli-Pendjari). A very important region in West Africa that has been created to protect some of the last populations of big game.
Nominated by Thea from Zen Travellers
Known for its thriving lively cities, rolling jungle landscapes that gorillas call home, safari-filled steppes, and high alpine environments, Uganda has something for every flavour. The Pearl of Africa packs a lot of awe-inspiring adventures into a small, scenic package. I spent three weeks in Uganda and left feeling like I needed to stay three more. Game drives in Murchison Falls National Park, trekking with gorillas in the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, and surviving whitewater rapids on the Nile in a kayak where notable highlights, but one of my favourite experiences was summiting Mount Elgon in Eastern Uganda, close to the border with Kenya. The mountain rises to over 4321m and features one of the largest intact calderas in the world. The route up to Wagagai Peak winds through tropical and bamboo forests until reaching the afro-alpine where extremely unique plants grow in the rich volcanic soil. From the summit, you can see the rolling valleys below and peer into Kenya to the east. While hiking no Mount Elgon is no Kilimanjaro, it’s a beautiful and rewarding hike and a great way to cap off a trip to Uganda.
Nominated by Elisa from World in Paris
Ethiopia is one of the most interesting and fascinating countries in Africa. It is the only country in the continent which was never colonized by a European country so it is still very authentic, especially in its food and traditions. Ethiopia has a wide variety of landscapes, from deserts along the eastern borders to high plateaux and mountains in the north offering great hiking opportunities. But Ethiopia is especially interesting for its historical sites, with amazing historical ensembles like the Gondar medieval castle, the rock-hewn churches of Lalibela or the early Christian churches decorated with beautiful paintings. Don’t miss the source of the Blue Nile, close to the lake town of Dahir Bahr, and its spectacular waterfalls.
Nominated by Kate Storm from Our Escape Clause
South Africa is the ultimate adventure destination: whether you’re hoping to go on a safari to spot magnificent wildlife, to hike in a stunning mountain range, to go scuba diving with Great White Sharks, to take a helicopter ride over one of the most beautiful urban coastlines in the world, or to surf on fantastic beaches, South Africa has you covered. As if that wasn’t enough, though, South Africa has another side as well: hoping to indulge in a world-class food scene, sip delicious wines on gorgeous vineyards, and to enjoy the best of city life for very competitive global prices? South Africa has you covered there, too. No single trip to South Africa could cover everything there is to do in the country, but consider adding these spots to your first trip: a safari in Kruger National Park to try to spot the Big Five (and all the other incredible animals, too–I’m personally partial to the hyena and warthog), some time in Cape Town exploring all the city has to offer, a visit to the Cape Winelands to explore South Africa’s beautiful vineyards, a trip to Boulders Beach to see African penguins in the wild, and a few days in the Drakensberg Mountains to hike your heart out. With an itinerary like that, there’s no doubt that you’ll leave South Africa already planning to come back
Nominated by Chris We from Chris Travel Blog
Ghana is a beautiful diverse country in western Africa and easily reached. It’s coast on the Gulf of Guinea is part of the Gold Coast with lots of heritage. The central part has nature parks and remains of the old Ashanti kingdom. Plan at least 2 or 3 weeks to see all the highlights of the country but if you have just a week a Ghana Gold Coast itinerary is a perfect way to experience Ghana too. Accra is the capital of Ghana and the gateway to the country. Although it’s the largest city a day in Accra is enough to explore the old fishing village, the fort, and the museum. Labadi Beach is the place to stay if you like beaches. Cape Town is another must visit area along the coast where there are two restored slave forts. Kakum National Park can also be reached from Cape Town. Westwards is Butre Beach which is Ghana’s number one beach and the gateway to various forts in the area. Do not forget to visit Nzulezu which is an old village on stilts. With some beach time 7-10 days will do to explore the coast. If you have more time head north to Kumasi to explore the remains of the old Ashanti kingdom. From there it’s easy to continue north to Tamala. Tamale is the gateway to Mole National Park where you can spot buffalo’s, monkey’s, elephants, lions and more. Ghana doesn’t have the complete big five unfortunately. But it does have lots of wildlife. This will be another 7-10 days. On the way back, it’s possible to explore Lake Volta and Digya National Park before arriving back in Accra. Driving in Ghana can be done by yourself without problem but keep in mind that rules on the road are a bit different. Outside the big cities it’s quite straightforward though. There are lots of traffic police controls so make sure your rental is good and make sure you have some 1 or 5 USD dollar bills for the policemen. It will save you lots of time! The people in Ghana are friendly and happy to point you in the correct direction. They can be overwhelming a bit especially the kids but just make sure you won’t give money (not needed!) and they’ll gladly play a game of soccer with you. You will enjoy your trip.
Nominated by Cristina Buonerba from The Lazy Trotter
Among stretches of red soil, baobabs, colorful textiles and women carrying baskets full of fruits on their heads, your first impression of Senegal will leave you speechless. The sound of djembes will touch your soul, while the heat of Africa will stick onto your skin. But you should not worry, because your eager to keep exploring this country will be stronger than anything. Welcome to Senegal, the land of Teranga, a country that turned the sense of hospitality into its main strengths. Did you know that in Senegal Muslims, Catholics and Animists coexist in peace? And that Senegal is one of the safest countries in Africa? Add it to your travel bucket list if you wish to dive into a cultural experience that you will rarely forget. Explore the pink lake, the crazy traffic of Dakar, the pastel colors of the Goree Island, the beautiful landscapes of the Sine Saloum and don’t forget to go south to visit the Casamance, the most beautiful region of Senegal. There you will dive into lush vegetation and tons and tons of mangoes! Learn how to dance to the rhythm of the Senegalese sound and open your heart to welcome one of the most incredible African countries into your traveling soul. And never forget, when in Africa, we are all one love!
Nominated by Heather Cole from The Conversant Traveller
The great thing about Morocco is that it’s totally different from anywhere else on earth, and it’s a country so diverse that there’s something for everyone, no matter what sort of traveller you are. From the Imperial cities that have 1001 tales to tell and the lofty Atlas Mountains hiding Berber villages and world-class trekking, to the rugged whitewashed coastal towns and the endless golden desert, it’s an adventurers paradise. It’s the one country in the world we return to again and again, each time discovering something new. We love the opulent riads in Marrakech and the Biblical streets of Fes, as well as camping out under the Saharan sky and haggling for sardines up in Essaouira. Morocco is a place of utter enchantment, and somewhere that lives up to, and even surpasses, all the hype. If you haven’t been, go. You won’t regret it!
Nominated by Warren Dobe from Slingshot Adventures
Stand at the foot of Africa’s highest mountain, Mount Kilimanjaro, or attempt to reach it’s lofty summit in a gruelling week-long expedition. Step onto the set of the Lion King in one of the many world-class game reserves and see an abundance of wildlife co-existing in the plains and ponds of the Serengeti. Watch fishermen bring in their haul on the rocky shores of Zanzibar Island and understand the unique culture of the Masaai people. And, if you like languages Tanzania has over 100 dialects to decipher. It is also one of the most stable and safest countries to travel in all of Africa.
There you have it! A list of the Top 10 Countries in Africa. Which country is your favourite?