Africa is huge. The continent comprises over 20 percent of the total land on Earth. So, where do you start when you’re planning a trip to Africa, keeping in mind that two attractions could be thousands of miles apart? Here are some of the coolest spots in Africa that could help you decide where to start:
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1. Egypt – Coptic Cairo
Egypt with its iconic pyramids would be probably be the first African destination of choice. But if you’re a wanderer at heart and looking for a unique atmosphere soaked in history, then look to the southern part of Cairo, and you’ll find the older section of the city, the Coptic Cairo. As you wander the twisting streets, you’ll make discoveries about the role of the three prominent world religions that put their mark here: It was where St. Mark first built his first church in Africa, where Moses was found by Pharaoh’s daughter, and where the oldest mosque in Africa is located. Every stone and every building is infused with ancient stories.
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2. Tanzania – Serengeti National Park
Visiting the Serengeti make you feel as if you just stepped into a National Geographic documentary or Disney’s The Lion King movie, especially when you see the millions of wildebeests, zebras, and gazelles making their annual migration from Tanzania to Kenya, a distance of 500 miles. Along the way, the animals must cross the Grumeti River, which offers visitors spectacular front row seating of predator (awaiting alligators and lions) versus prey. It’s no wonder that it’s one of the seven natural wonders of Africa.
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3. South Africa – Cape Town
Overlooking the seaside city of Cape Town is Table Mountain, a 1089 meter ascent to one of the most spectacular natural views of the land and ocean in Africa. On a clear day, you can see Robben Island, where Nelson Mandela was kept prisoner for 18 years. A ferry ride and tour of the island prison, now designated as a World Heritage Site by United Nations, can be arranged to give you a glimpse of South Africa’s apartheid past. Then, you can head out to Boulders Beach to frolic with a colony of 1000 or so wild penguins that call Cape Town their home.