The Victoria Falls are situated on the border of Zambia and Zimbabwe, and originate from the Zambezi River. Perhaps the most famous waterfalls in existence, they feature the worlds largest continous sheet of falling water and were declared a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1989. The Falls are sometimes referred to by their name, ‘Mosi-oa-Tunya’, which means ‘The Smoke that Thunders’.
Mount Kilimanjaro is a large, dormant volcano situated near the Kenyan border in Northern Tanzania, within the Kilimanjaro National Park. Both the largest free-standing mountain in the world and the highest mountain in Africa, Mount Kilimanjaro is especially unique in that its snow-capped peak imposes itself in the midst of the flat, extensive plains of the Tanzanian Savannah. The areas rich biodiversity paired with Mount Kilimanjaro’s impressive physical features make it well deserving of its designation as a UNESCO World Heritage site.
The Sahara is the largest hot desert in the world, spanning over 3.6 million square miles and running through several countries in Northern Africa including Egypt, Morocco, Niger, Chad, Mauritania, Western Sahara, Sudan, Mali, Algeria and Tunisia. It’s name, ‘Sahara’, is derived from Arabic, and translated literally means ‘the greatest desert’. Whilst the vast majority of the Sahara is comprised of large sand expanses, there are some mountain ranges and grasslands, sparse though they may be. Interestingly, the hottest ever temperature recording was taken at the Sahara Desert – clocking in at an astonishing 58 degrees Celcius.
At 17,057ft (5199m), Mount Kenya is the tallest mountain in Kenya and the second highest in Africa. Created approximately 3 million years ago, Mount Kenya is an extinct volcano, often referred to as the ‘Place of Light’. Situated in central Kenya, just north of the equator, the mountain lies within the Mount Kenya National Park, which was inscribed into the UNESCO World Heritage list in 1997. The Kikuyu people, who live on the southern and western sides of Mount Kenya, firmly believe that their God (Ngai) lived on the mountains peak when he came down from the heavens.
The Ngorongoro Crater is a huge volcanic caldera, covering 260 sq. km (100 sq. mi) in Northern Tanzania. Formed almost 3 million years ago when a giant volcano exploded and collapsed on itself, the Ngorongoro Crater is 610m (2000ft) deep. Endowed with an abundance of wildlife, the crater features almost every animal species present in East Africa.
Located in South Africa, the Three Rondavels are marvelous round rocks rising above the Blyde River Canyon. Also called the Three Sisters, they serve as reminders of the native hut housing structures called rondavels. Situated along the famous Panorama Route in Mpumalanga, the Three Rondavels rock formations consist of quartzite and shale. They are sometimes referred to as the ‘Chiefs Troublesome Wives’, with the flat-top peak representing the chief, Mapjaneng, and the Rondavels representing his three wives.
Zanzibar, which means “coast of blacks” is an archipelago situated 25-50km (16-31 mi) east of mainland Tanzania. The archipelago consists of numerous small islands and two large ones: the main island is Unjuga, which is commonly referred to as Zanzibar itself, and the other is Pemba, which is known as the “Green Island”. The Zanzibar archipelago is characterized by beautiful sandy beaches, which line its perimeter.
Sossusvlei is a large salt and clay pan, home to the worlds highest sand dunes. Situated in the southern region of the Namib Desert of Namibia, Sossusvlei features sand dunes which can reach heights of up to 325m. It’s name is thought to originate from both the Afrikaans and Nama languages, roughly meaning “dead end marsh” when translated.
The Fish River Canyon is located in southern Namibia, West Africa. As the second largest canyon in the World, it’s a very popular destination among tourists. Although dry with only a small series of pools for most of the year, late summer flooding breathes new life into the 404 mile Fish River. Spectacular panoramic views await visitors of the Fish River Canyon, particularly at Hell’s Bend, a scenic overlook named after a horseshoe shaped bend in the river.
The Serengeti National Park is a beautiful area in Tanzania, famous for it’s annual wildebeest migration. Over two million animals migrate from the Serengeti in Tanzania to the Maasai Mara Reserve in Kenya in search of fresh pasture. To get a sense of just how monumental this migration is, imagine the entire population of Houston, Texas, leaving their homes and walking to Oklahoma. Astonishingly beautiful in its own right, the Serengeti features an impressive 14,763 km. sq (5700 sq. mi) of savanna, woodland and grassland plains.