Epic African National Parks

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Africa is so big that you could eas­i­ly fit The Low­er 48 inside of it twice. The enor­mi­ty of the con­ti­nent makes for an abun­dance of wildlife, stun­ning geog­ra­phy, and unex­plored ter­ri­to­ry. These Nation­al Parks show­case Africa’s nat­ur­al beauty.

1Kruger (South Africa)
Kruger Nation­al Park has all the big ani­mals such as lions, croc­o­diles, and ele­phants, but also the small­er guys like the hon­ey bad­ger and the genet. You can view these ani­mals from the com­fort of a beau­ti­ful lodge, or go on a safari tour for up to 7‑days. Kruger is con­sid­ered one of the most tourist-friend­ly of the African game parks.

 

 

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Skele­ton Coast (Namib­ia)
This omi­nous coast­line earned its name from the whale bones in the sand, the rust­ing ship­wrecks look­ing out to sea, and the strand­ed sailors who wan­dered the bar­ren shores in search of food and water in vain. Although desert moun­tains and giant sand dunes hug the coast, cool air and mois­ture from the ocean breath life into a few areas of the Skele­ton Coast. Black rhi­no, ele­phant, and oryx are just a sam­ple of the ani­mals you may find here.

3Serengeti (Tan­za­nia)
The Serengeti is a vast plain filled with wilde­beest, zebra, ele­phant, lion, giraffe, hye­na, and hun­dreds of oth­er ani­mal species you may not even know about, such as the insec­tiv­o­rous aard­wolf. Whether you take a hot air bal­loon over the Serengeti and get a birds-eye-view of the mas­sive ani­mal herds, or get up-close and per­son­al in a Lan­drover-safari, the Serengeti is an unri­valed super­high­way of migrat­ing ani­mals that can­not be overlooked.

4Mt. Kil­i­man­jaro (Tan­za­nia)
You don’t need to know any tech­ni­cal climb­ing skills to reach the sum­mit of Mt. Kil­i­man­jaro, but you must be in great phys­i­cal con­di­tion. Trekking to the sum­mit will take you through a num­ber of ecosys­tems. Green forests filled with elu­sive crea­tures like mon­keys, ele­phants, and leop­ards, give way to the Moor­land Zone, which is char­ac­ter­ized by polar­iz­ing tem­per­a­tures and the giant lobelia. Hik­ers will then reach the high desert and fin­ish the trek with the glac­i­er fields near the sum­mit. When you’re fin­ished, you can cross one of The 7 Sum­mits off your list.

5Bwin­di Impen­e­tra­ble For­est (Ugan­da)
Deep in these lush-green forests lives the moun­tain goril­la, the main attrac­tion. The weath­er is unpre­dictable; it can be freez­ing cold, and bru­tal­ly hot, and it rains a lot. The ter­rain is demand­ing so you’ll need good hik­ing boots, a rain­coat, and Ziploc bags for your valu­ables. The best way to make it through the Bwin­di is to hire a safari com­pa­ny to guide you to the gorillas.

7Vic­to­ria Falls (Zim­bab­we)
The Zam­bezi Riv­er drops 700,000 cubic meters of water down Vic­to­ria Falls every minute, and that’s just the main falls. Known as the largest water­fall in the world, Vic­to­ria falls offers a num­ber of hik­ing trails with spec­tac­u­lar view­points as well as oppor­tu­ni­ties to see plen­ty of exot­ic plants and small mammals.

8Tas­sili (Alge­ria)
This Nation­al Park is like Utah’s Arch­es NP on steroids. The moun­tain­ous region of the Saha­ran Desert, locat­ed in south­east­ern Alge­ria, is char­ac­ter­ized by strik­ing red-rock mono­liths, nat­ur­al arch­es, and beau­ti­ful rock art. Trav­el­ing alone in the Tas­sili is pro­hib­it­ed and the Zari­ba Agency is high­ly rec­om­mend­ed. This unin­hab­it­ed region is enor­mous and will take more than just a cou­ple of days to explore.