Top Adventure Holiday Destinations in Africa

written by local expert Anna Faustino

Anna is a co-founder of Adventure in You and has been traveling the world for the last 9 years. She has spent time living in Thailand, Mexico, Indonesia, and Spain and is our local expert in these areas. Her expertise on travel, gear, and building businesses have been featured on Foundr, Business Insider, Yahoo Travel, and more.

Going on an African Safari is just one of those experiences that you have to do at least once in your lifetime. Between the stunning and diverse scenery, the variety in wildlife, and the fantastic adventure activities you can do, Africa has a little bit of something for everyone. Whether you’re headed there for a one man expedition, a romantic yet adventurous honeymoon, or a family holiday, here are our picks for the top adventure holiday destinations in Africa.

africa odyssey

Tanzania: Beaches, Wildlife, & Adventure

Tanzania is a popular choice for safari goers as it has some of the best wildlife experiences available in all of Africa combined with some of the most diverse environments. You can opt to visit the many safaris available, relax in the pristine beaches of Zanzibar, or climb one of the 7 peaks of the world, Mt. Kilimanjaro.

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Highlights: Two popular safari choices to go with in Tanzania is The Serengeti National Park and the Ngorongoro Crater. While both are equally as memorable and diverse, Serengeti is known for the annual wildebeest and zebra migration. Imagine seeing over 2.5 million of these animals migrate across the vast lands. Ngorongoro Crater on the other hand, provides a good chance of seeing lions, hippos, and rhinos while you gaze at its dramatic caldera. Other safaris like Selous and Katavi, although less popular, are hidden and untouched gems with lots of wildlife and game sightings.

kilimanjaro africa odyssey

Top Adventures: For those looking at doing more than just a safari, how about challenging yourself to climb Mount Kilimanjaro? You have to be in top physical and mental condition as the 5-6 day trek up the mountain, combined with high altitude is not an easy feat. However, if you do succeed, you will be rewarded with an unexplainable feeling of accomplishment and bragging rights for conquering the highest mountain in the continent! Another suggested adventure would be trying your luck in kitesurfing in the crystal blue waters of Zanzibar.

Related: 10 Epic Treks in Asia That You Have to Do in Your Lifetime

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Zimbabwe: Canoeing Safaris & Victoria Falls

Zimbabwe is actually one of our top picks for adventure destinations mainly due to the wide range of activities that the magnificent Victoria Falls provides. From bungee jumping down terrifying ravines to white water rafting through wild rapids, the adventures are endless. If this is too adventurous for you, there are plenty of luxury lodges where you can happily observe the wildlife from.

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Highlights: One cannot visit Zimbabwe without going to Hwange, a 15,000 square kilometer park which features some of the best game viewing locations in the country. With large prides of lions and buffalos roaming about, topped with one of the largest elephant populations in Africa, going around here is a real treat for wildlife enthusiasts. The park itself has no permanent surface water which means that animals of every kind can be spotted around watering holes. Apart from Hwange, a popular place to visit is Mana Pool National Park where you can do canoe safaris. Imagine canoeing past grazing elephants and wild buffalos in undeveloped wild safari lands. Walking safaris are also quite popular here which for us, is as good as it gets. You get to really see and experience Africa as you forge your own wildlife encounters. Naturally, another highlight is seeing the raw beauty of Victoria Falls as you witness first hand the largest cascading waterfalls in the world.

victoria-falls africa oddysey

Top Adventures: Apart from the adrenaline filled activities like bungee jumping or white water rafting in the Zambezi River, you can also go on “The Flight of Angels” where you see a bird’s eye view of the sheer power and size of Victoria Falls through an aerial helicopter ride. If you want to take this epic adventures to the next level, cross over to the Zambia side of Victoria Falls where you can swim in Devil’s Pool where you peer at the misty gorge below, showcasing a knee weakening 100 meter drop.

View full details of Zimbabwe tour

Botswana: The Ultimate Safari Destination

Although there are far more popular places in Africa, Botswana tops our list because of its obscurity. Although a lot more expensive compared to other African Safari destinations, Botswana’s wildlife is untouched, raw and wild. Imagine 100,000 elephants grazing in peace as 100 or so hippos wade in the waterways while desert roaming lions roam about. Famous for its high end exclusive resorts and camps, if you want an intimate safari experience, this is the place to go.

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Highlights: The Okavango Delta is one of Africa’s most famed wildlife areas. This is the world’s only inland delta whose plains are studded with some of Africa’s big game. As soon as Okavango’s flood waters arrive, millions of animals migrate here from all parts of the Kalahari, leaving you with one of the most memorable experiences ever. From wild walking safaris, game driving, to boating excursions in shallow waters, there is no shortage of things to do and see in Botswana.

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Top Adventures: For those who want to get active during their holiday, you can go mountain biking through the bush or zoom past open fields in a quad bike. Helicopter riders around the Okavango to take stunning aerial shots of the wildlife are also quite popular.

View full details of Botswana tour

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Uganda: Gorilla Safaris

If you want to do something unique, going beyond the usual big game sightings, consider going to Uganda, located in the heart of the continent. Uganda’s lush forests, lakes, and mountains are the primary reason why people visit. Although they have general safari parks, they simply don’t compare to the other large reserves that its neighboring countries have.

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Highlights: The best thing about going to Uganda is the fact that not a lot of tourists venture out here. Enjoy the wild and untouched forests in the Bwindi Impenetrable National Park as you trek to see the gorillas in their natural habitat. Seeing these magnificent wild animals in the wild is enough reasons for us to choose Uganda. Along with the large population of primates and other wildlife, the combination of volcanos and lakes makes this place on of the most stunning in the region.

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Top Adventures: Naturally wild trekking in the deep jungle to see the gorillas is our top pick for adventures in this country. With some of their national Parks home to 120 species of mammals and 348 species of birds. Otherwise, you can also go whitewater rafting in the Nalubale River. Be weary that you have to be in good condition when you go in these long treks. We went on a 4 day trek deep in the Jungles of Sumatra in search of Orangutans where we learned the hard way that long treks really mean long treks!

View full details of Uganda tour

Africa Odyssey

Being that Africa is literally HUGE and the options for tours are endless, we recommend going with the guys over at Africa Odyssey. Their enthusiastic team is comprised of people who have all traveled around Africa extensively and are able to tailor together the best possible African experiences. From adventure filled trips to luxurious romantic honeymoons, they are able to create custom trips, based on what you want to see and do. The best part about them is unlike other tour operators, these guys go on the ground, making it a purpose to travel around Africa at least once a year, ensuring that each experience is as meaningful and personal as possible. While an African Safari is still a bucket list item for us, when we do go, we will be sure to combine our love for adventure and meaningful encounters with animals in the wild.

To find out more about Africa Odyssey, check out their site and read up on their other adventure challenges


africa odyssey

This post was written in partnership between Adventure In You and Africa Odyssey, one of our trusted partners.

Looking for other adventures in Africa? Check out some of our Guides to Morocco:

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16 thoughts on “Top Adventure Holiday Destinations in Africa”

  1. Hi! Love this post! I’m looking forward to a three week trip to Africa, and want to have some beaches, safari, climbing and adventure. The only problem is that when I’m researching… it all looks so expensive! Do you have any tips or advice to save some money while in Africa? Thanks a lot.

    • Hi @disqus_wJZfvT971L:disqus Yes, unfortunately Africa is pricey. Your best bet is to organize tours directly when you get there. They will be cheaper than the ones advertized online. Alternatively, you can also opt to do the trips DIY instead of large organized tours and safaris! Hope this helps and good luck!

  2. Love seeing all these options out side by side. I knew that Africa was full of variety in safari options but this makes it pretty clear. Hoping to go one day.

  3. Wow some fantastic tours. I don’t think I could pick just one. They all sound great, although I am not a big climber I think I would skip the climb to the top of Mount Kilimanjaro. Botswana would be great I like places a little off the beaten path. It is still a few years away as my son is too young to go on animal safaris so we have a while to narrow down the choices.

  4. What an amazing selection – and how many wonderful places to discover in Africa. Going on a safari and to Tanzania are on my travel list 🙂

  5. Beautiful images!! Just makes you want to catch the next flight to Africa. Tanzania is definitely a place were I would love to do a safari one day.

  6. As listed in your awesome post, Africa definitely has it all: beaches, wildlife, safari and the largest waterfall in the world. What could I possibly want more? I also love the pictures, especially the one with the jaguar.

  7. Visiting Africa was probably my favorite trip ever, and this so makes me want to go back. We loved our safaris in Botswana, and I really want to see the gorillas in Uganda someday.


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