Africa main | Heritage and Horizon: Top 10 Popular Tourist Destinations in Africa 2024

Heritage and Horizon: Top 10 Popular Tourist Destinations in Africa 2024

Zoey Peregrine Avatar

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Sierra Leone

Tourist Destinations in Africa - Sierra Leone

Modern Freetown thrives with artistic spaces, cafes, and a vibrant cosmopolitan lifestyle while still preserving influences from its past as a hub of civil rights advocacy. The Sierra Leone National Museum and relics like the historic Cotton Tree provide perspective into the country’s role in the struggle against slavery and colonialism.

The destinations above are just snippets of Sierra Leone’s offerings. Its welcoming people, oral traditions, drumming, dance, cuisine, and more provide a gateway into Black history that still shapes global communities today in meaningful ways. Discover it all yourself soon!

Planning Your Trip:

Visas: Most nationalities require a visa, obtainable online or upon arrival. A typical visa costs around $160 and can go to $265.
Safety Precautions: Get vaccinated for yellow fever, malaria, typhoid, and hepatitis A. Avoid tap water and eat only cooked foods.
Currency: The Leone (SLL) is the local currency. ATMs are available in major cities, but carrying cash is recommended.
Airline to Fly: Ethiopian Air flights with 1 layover in Lome, 14h10m.
Language: English is widely spoken, but learning basic Krio phrases is appreciated.
Best Time to Visit: The dry season (November – April) offers pleasant weather, while the green season (May – October) showcases lush landscapes.
Global Peace Index (GPI): 2.3
Infrastructure: 2/5
Eco-rating: 4/5

Botswana

Tourist Destinations in Africa - Botswana

For wildlife encounters, the lush wetlands of the Okavango Delta provide a sanctuary for elephants, hippos, crocodiles, and rare bird species. The Central Kalahari Game Reserve offers gorgeous grassland savannas where meerkats and brown hyenas reside. At night, gaze at the Milky Way sparkling across the starry African sky. In Maun, take a scenic flight over the Okavango. And in Gaborone, learn about Botswana’s culture at the National Museum and Art Gallery. End with a sip of Boswagwa traditional beer.

Planning Your Trip:

Visa: Required for most nationalities, but U.S. citizens are permitted to stay up to 90 days total within a 12-month period without a visa.
Safety precautions: Get vaccinated for hepatitis A/B and rabies. Only drink bottled, filtered or boiled water.
Currency: Pula (BWP). ATMs are readily available in major towns.
Airline to Fly: United Airlines flights with 1 stop, 28h05m.
Language: English is widely spoken, but Setswana is the national language.
Best time to visit: May to October (dry season).
Global Peace Index (GPI): 1.6
Infrastructure: 4/5
Eco-rating: 5/5

Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe | Heritage and Horizon: Top 10 Popular Tourist Destinations in Africa 2024

Marvel at rock art within Matobo Hills, a sacred site for spirit mediums. In the Great Zimbabwe National Monument, explore the towering walls of the ancient city after which the nation is named. Learn elaborate basket weaving techniques still practiced using river reeds.

Planning Your Trip:

Visas: Required for most nationalities. Apply online or on arrival. You can expect to pay USD $30 for a 30-day/single-entry visa.
Safety precautions: Drink bottled water only. Get vaccinated for cholera, hepatitis A/B, rabies, typhoid, and yellow fever.
Currency:  Zimbabwe dollar (ZWL). ATMs are available in major cities, but credit cards are widely accepted.
Airline to Fly: Kenya Airways flights with 1 Stop, 19h30m.
Language: English is widely spoken, but Shona and Ndebele are the national languages.
Best Time to Visit: May to October (dry season).
Global Peace Index (GPI): 2.3
Infrastructure: 3/5
Eco-rating: 4/5

Namibia

Tourist Destinations in Africa - Namibia

In the north, visit tribes like the Himba who still live and dress according to ancestral customs. Learn elaborate hairstyling methods or watch trance dances channeling the spirit world. The San culture also comes alive through rock art across sites like Twyfelfontein and Brandberg Mountain.

For scenery, the iconic Sossusvlei sand dunes and Deadvlei’s skeletal acacia trees offer a glimpse of raw, untouched beauty. Cruise along the Orange River, spotting oryx, springbok, and ostriches. The Etosha salt pans make the best spot for viewing lions, elephants, and more against stark white earth.

Planning Your Trip:

Visas: Tourists visiting Namibia for fewer than 90 days are not required to obtain a visa.
Safety precautions: no immunizations are needed, just a Panama hat and sunscreen.
Currency: Namibian dollar (NAD). ATMs are readily available in major towns.
Airline to Fly: Ethiopian Air flights with 2 stops, 25h20m.
Language: English is widely spoken, but Afrikaans and local languages are common.
Best Time to Visit: May to September (dry season).
Global Peace Index (GPI): 1.9
Infrastructure: 4/5
Eco-rating: 5/5

Cape Verde

Tourist Destinations in Africa Cape Verde | Heritage and Horizon: Top 10 Popular Tourist Destinations in Africa 2024

On the capital island of Santiago, experience morna music and dance with West African rhythms and Portuguese fado influences. Soak up the lively music scene that has produced renowned Cape Verdean musicians in Mindelo. Take advantage of the island of Fogo to see historic settlements with pastel-colored colonial houses.

Famous Islands & Natural Wonders Cape Verde’s 10 islands all have their own unique charm. Sal and Boa Vista boast beautiful beaches and watersports, while Santo Antão and São Nicolau showcase spectacular mountainous landscapes perfect for hiking. See Cape Verde’s only active volcano on Fogo and spot humpback whales off São Vicente.

Planning Your Trip:

Visas: U.S. citizens entering Cabo Verde for tourism for less than 30 days do not require a tourist visa.
Safety precautions: vaccination is optional, but authorities recommend vaccinations against hepatitis A and B, typhoid, cholera, polio, tetanus, and yellow fever.
Currency: Cape Verdean escudo (CVE).
Airline to Fly: TAP Air Portugal flights with 2 stops, 25h20m.
Language: Portuguese and Cape Verdean Creole, but English is widely spoken.
Best Time to Visit: Mid-November to June.
Global Peace Index (GPI): 1.9
Infrastructure: 3/5
Eco-rating: 4/5

Kenya

Tourist Destinations in Africa - Kenya

Kenya offers world-famous safari parks teeming with the Big 5, like Masai Mara, Amboseli, and Tsavo. Nairobi offers a cosmopolitan side of Kenya with museums, markets, and a national park. Explore the Swahili history of Mombasa and Lamu on the coast. Lake Nakuru amazes with flamingo flocks, while Hell’s Gate has geology and wildlife.

As one of Africa’s most developed countries, Kenya provides modern amenities amidst its wild beauty. Enjoy resorts overlooking white sand beaches, fine dining, and amenities like spas and golfing. Vibrant nightlife thrives in urban areas. Shopping abounds for art, crafts, clothing, and more.

Planning Your Trip:

Visas: Beginning January 2024, Kenya will be a visa-free country. BUT you must cough up $34 for an Electronic Travel Authorization.
Safety precautions: vaccinations against hepatitis A, tetanus, and poliomyelitis, against yellow fever, are optional but highly recommended by the Ministry of Health. Antimalarial prophylaxis is also required: one pill per week, the first one seven days before the trip.
Currency: Kenyan Shilling (KES).
Airline to Fly: Kenya Airways flights – Non-stop, 14h30m.
Language: English & Swahili are two official languages of Kenya.
Best Time to Visit: Mid-November to June.
Global Peace Index (GPI): 1.9
Infrastructure: 3/5
Eco-rating: 4/5

Ghana

Tourist Destinations in Africa - Ghana

Ghana boasts iconic and deeply meaningful sites like Cape Coast and Elmina Castles to reflect on the slave trade, Kwame Nkrumah Memorial Park, and the historic Manhyia Palace. Bustling, modern cities like Accra and Kumasi boast cosmopolitan amenities alongside cultural landmarks. Cape Coast’s beaches, Volta Region’s mountains, and Mole Park offer stunning natural beauty.

As one of Africa’s most developed and peaceful countries, Ghana blends rich heritage and landscapes with modern comforts. Enjoy fine dining, shopping, vibrant nightlife, and entertainment in Accra alongside top-rated hotels and resorts.

Planning Your Trip:

Visas: A visa is required for entry to Ghana for all American citizens. It starts at $65.
Safety precautions: Carry hand sanitizer and bottled water. Get vaccinated for malaria, hepatitis A/B, typhoid, and yellow fever.
Currency: Ghanaian Cedi (GHS).
Airline to Fly: Ethiopian Air flights with 1 stop, 19h50m.
Language: English is the official language.
Best Time to Visit: Mid-November to April (the dry season).
Global Peace Index (GPI): 1.8
Infrastructure: 4/5
Eco-rating: 4/5

Nigeria

Tourist Destinations in Africa Nigeria 1 | Heritage and Horizon: Top 10 Popular Tourist Destinations in Africa 2024

Modern megacities like Lagos and Abuja offer glimpses into Nigeria’s future with vibrant arts and culture scenes, museums, restaurants, nightlife, and infrastructure amidst the hustle and bustle of urban African life. Enjoy the rich flavors of Nigerian food, which range from fiery stews like Jollof rice and Egusi to savory pastries like Akara and Chin Chin. Try the local favorite, palm wine, while you have the chance.

Planning Your Trip:

Visas: For USA Passport holders, the Visa fee is $160.00
Safety precautions: Get vaccinated for yellow fever, malaria, typhoid, and hepatitis A.
Currency: Nigerian Naira (NGN).
Airline to Fly: Ethiopian Air flights with 1 stop, 13h05m.
Language: English is the official language.
Best Time to Visit: Mid-November to January (the dry season).
Global Peace Index (GPI): 2.4
Infrastructure: 3/5
Eco-rating: 3/5

Liberia

Tourist Destinations in Africa - Liberia

Monrovia offers a modern cosmopolitan lifestyle with art galleries, cafes, and historical sites like the Ducor Palace Hotel that share perspectives into Liberia’s history as the first independent African republic. Outamba-Kilimi National Park protects some of West Africa’s last lowland rainforests and diverse wildlife. See chimpanzees at the Libassa Wildlife Sanctuary or relax on the palm-fringed sands of Silver Beach.

Tour the abandoned grandeur of White Plain’s historical mansions. Discover songs, masks, and oral traditions still thriving in indigenous communities. Liberia’s people, food, architecture, and more provide a gateway into Black history that still resonates with African descendants today in meaningful ways.

Planning Your Trip:

Visas: Most nationalities require a visa obtainable upon arrival for around $70.
Safety precautions: Get vaccinated for yellow fever, malaria, typhoid, and hepatitis A/B. Avoid tap water and eat only thoroughly cooked foods.
Currency: The Liberian Dollar (LRD) is used locally, but USD is widely accepted. ATMs are limited.
Airline to Fly: Ethiopian Air flights with 2 stops, 15h55m.
Language: English is the official language, but learning basic greetings is appreciated.
Best Time to Visit: The dry season (November-April) has pleasant weather conditions.
Global Peace Index (GPI): 2.4
Infrastructure: 2/5
Eco-rating: 3.5/5

South Africa

Tourist Destinations in Africa - South Africa

Cosmopolitan Cape Town thrives with art galleries, music venues, cafés, and sites like Robben Island that provide perspective into the struggle against apartheid. The Cape Malay community infuses the city with aromatic cuisine and colorful architecture.

Kruger National Park and its lush wildlife habitats allow you to connect with nature and indigenous heritage. Learn about ancient San rock art or stay in a traditional rondavel hut.

The cradle of humankind at the Sterkfontein Caves, the Zulu Kingdom in KwaZulu-Natal, the freedom struggle history of Soweto—these and more provide a gateway into Black history that still shapes global communities in meaningful ways.

Planning Your Trip:

Visas: Some nationalities need a visa, which is obtainable online for around $100.
Safety precautions: Get vaccinated for hepatitis A, B, typhoid, yellow fever, rabies, meningitis, and polio.
Currency: South African Rand (ZAR)
Airline to Fly: United Airlines flights – Non-stop, 14h35m.
Language: English is commonly spoken, but learning basic Zulu/Xhosa phrases is appreciated.
Best Time to Visit: The dry season (May-September) offers ideal weather across most of the country.
Global Peace Index (GPI): 2.2
Infrastructure: 4/5
Eco-rating: 4/5

Conclusion

Last Updated

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