At times Africa seems like an impenetrable beast, a fascinating continent which is full of dangers and warnings, difficult-to-get visas and plenty of obstacles along the way. In return for your effort and for your perseverance however, you are rewarded with some of the world’s most spectacular sights and experiences.
I was lucky enough to spend 6 months traversing some of Africa’s most exciting countries and I wanted to share with you my best experiences from that time. Take a look at see which one you would add to your bucket list if you had the chance.
The only real bucket list item that I had in Africa prior to visiting, was Mount Kilimanjaro and I had dedicated quite a lot of time to training for this in the run up to my big trip. Sat in Tanzania, the ‘Roof of Africa’ stands at an impressive 5,862 metres, and would take 10 days to climb. There are shorter itineraries for climbing Kilimanjaro which you can take if you are a confident climber. After an arduous 10 day climb, dealing with the problems which the high altitude brought, I finally reached the summit, and felt as though I was standing on top of an entire continent, an amazing experience which I would most definitely recommend.
The great wildebeest migration is one of the most spectacular events in the animal kingdom and each year sees over 1.5 million wildebeest traveling in a cycle of over 800 kilometres as they seek lush areas to graze. I knew that if I was going to be in Africa, that I had to find somewhere that I could spot this fascinating migration, and that is just what I did during my time in the Masai Mara. Sat in the Jeep I honestly thought that I had missed the migration, in spite of what local reports said, and then I saw one or two wildebeest trotting around, before what seemed like someone had let them all out and thousands upon thousands of these incredible beasts arrived across the planes. If you want to witness this spectacle, you can do so from many regions in Kenya and in Tanzania, check the maps to see when they will be in each location.
As much as I did want to stay for a short while with an African tribe, I was really keen on not treating it like a human zoo, I wanted to understand, not to view this as an attraction. With this in mind, I decided to stay with a tribe that have actually invited tourists into their domain, and the Dumba tribe in Namibia was one of them. I stayed for 3 days with the tribe, did as they did, worked as they worked and danced as they danced. This was an incredibly eye-opening experience for me and the tribe were very keen on showing me their way of life. In a modern world where everything is digital, it was so refreshing to get back to the basics in terms of our way of life.
Africa treated me to some amazing highlights and I cannot wait to go back and make some more.