East Africa, tucked in the far east end of the African continent, is a beautiful region comprised of five countries linked by the Great Rift Valley. As a result, the region is home to a range of natural wonders that are as diverse as they are memorable. From hot, open savannahs that stretch as far as the eye can see to dense, lush green jungles that are home to all five of Africa’s Big Five, the Sub-Saharan region is nothing short of awe-inspiring.
So, whether you are an avid wildlife enthusiast, a nature lover, or just looking for a change of pace, embarking on a trip through the heart of Africa is sure to be an adventure you won’t forget. But where do you even start? We got you. Pack your bags, lace up your hiking boots, and get ready to explore these ten most beautiful East African destinations below.
10. Lake Tanganyika, Burundi
Often overlooked in favor of other popular countries like Kenya, which is a perfect destination for honeymooners, Burundi is a small East African country with equally stunning destinations. Burundi’s section of Lake Tanganyika is one such destination.
It’s one of the world’s longest freshwater lakes, and a significant part of it is in Burundi. It offers stunning scenery, a rich diversity of fish species, and peaceful beaches for visitors. The lake is surrounded by lush hills and forests, making it an excellent destination for hiking, fishing, and bird-watching. Visitors to Burundi’s part of Lake Tanganyika can go on boat tours, explore local villages, go swimming, or relax and soak up the sun on its sandy beaches.
Whether you are looking for adventure, relaxation, or a unique cultural experience, Burundi’s part of Lake Tanganyika is a must-visit destination in East Africa.
- Recommended Tour: 3-Day Burundi Tour- Multi-Day Burundi Sightseeing Tour with Karera Waterfalls
- Duration: 3 Days
- Cost: From $675.05 USD per adult
9. Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1981, Serengeti National Park in Tanzania is one of East Africa’s most stunning parks. It’s also one of the largest, covering an area of over 14,000 square kilometers.
While it’s home to a diverse range of flora and fauna, Serengeti National Park is most famous for the Great Migration, where over a million wildebeest, zebras, and gazelles make a yearly journey in search of food and water, followed closely by predators like lions, cheetahs, and hyenas.
Visitors can go on hot air balloon safaris for an unobstructed view of the park’s vast but breathtaking savannas, jungles, and wildlife.
- Recommended Tour: Hot Air Balloon Safari & Breakfast in Serengeti
- Duration: 5 Hours
- Cost: From $599 USD per adult
8. Lake Nakuru National Park, Kenya
Lake Nakuru National Park in Kenya is a blend of natural beauty and wildlife. It is home to the famous alkaline Lake Nakuru, a haven for thousands of flamingoes and other water birds. Visitors can also expect a diverse range of wildlife, including lions, leopards, baboons, and rhinos. Lake Nakuru Park also boasts a diverse landscape, ranging from lush forests to expansive savannas. There are organized day trips through the parks and other popular towns in Kenya’s rift valley section, such as Naivasha.
- Recommended Tour: Lake Nakuru Day Trip Safari – Birds & Animal, Naivasha & Crescent Nature Walk
- Duration: 11-12 hours
- Cost: From $185 USD per adult
7. Volcanoes National Park, Rwanda
Located in the Northwest of Rwanda, Volcanoes National Pak is one of the most popular tourist destinations in East Africa, and for good reasons. It’s the starting point for gorilla trekking expeditions and is home to critically endangered mountain gorillas. Visitors can observe these magnificent primates in their natural habitat during Gorilla trekking tours, a once-in-a-lifetime experience that is both awe-inspiring and humbling. Gorillas aside, Volcanoes National Park is also home to other wildlife, including golden monkeys, elephants, forest buffalos, and black-fronted duikers.
- Recommended Tour: Gorilla Trekking
- Duration: 2 Days
- Cost: From $6,000 USD per adult
6. Zanzibar Archipelago, Tanzania
Located off the coast of Tanzania, the Zanzibar Archipelago is a group of islands that boast a unique blend of stunning natural beauty, a rich cultural heritage, and a vibrant atmosphere.
The largest island in the Archipelago, Unguja, commonly Zanzibar, is the most developed and famous. It has stunning beaches with crystal clear waters and white sand, perfect for swimming, sunbathing, and water sports.
Visitors can also explore the historic Stone Town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site renowned for its narrow alleyways, bustling bazaars, and landmark buildings that blend African, Arabic, and European cultural influences. Diving and snorkeling are popular activities that are unsurprising, as the surrounding waters teem with vibrant marine life and coral reefs.
- Recommended Tour: Spice Tour + Stone Town Tour + Prison Island
- Duration: 9-hours
- Cost: From $110 USD per adult
5. Amboseli National Park, Kenya
Amboseli National Park is a stunning wildlife reserve located in southern Kenya. It is best known for its large elephant herds and incredible views of Mount Kilimanjaro, which towers over the Park in the background.
The Park offers a diverse range of habitats, from savanna grasslands to swamps and forests, making it a haven for a wide variety of wildlife. Visitors can also expect to see lions, cheetahs, buffalos, giraffes, zebras, and many other species of animals.
Amboseli is also home to several Maasai communities, and visitors have the opportunity to learn about the traditional ways of life of this fascinating tribe. Day tour drives are the most popular way to explore the Park, but one may also opt for a walking safari.
- Recommended Tour: Day Tour to Amboseli National Park
- Duration: 10 Hours
- Cost: From $309.49 USD per adult
4 .Lake Kivu, Rwanda
Whether you are interested in water sports, exploring local villages, or simply soaking up the sun, Lake Kivu is an ideal destination in Rwanda. Located in the western part of the country, Lake Kivu is the largest lake in Rwanda and is known for its stunning scenery, clear waters, and sandy beaches. Visitors to Lake Kivu can relax on the beach, swim, or participate in water sports such as fishing, kayaking, or paddle boarding. The lake is surrounded by rolling hills, forests, and small villages, making it a great destination for exploring the local area. Lake Kivu is also known for its unique culture and rich history. Visit Lake Kivu to learn about the local customs and traditions of the Banyarwanda people, who have lived along the shores of the lake for centuries, or hop on a boat for a lake excursion.
- Recommended Tour: Boat excursion on the Lake Kivu, Rwanda
- Duration: Up to half an hour
- Cost: From $80.7 USD per group ( Up to 8 people)
3. Tarangire National Park, Tanzania
Located in Northern Tanzania, Tarangire National Park is a wildlife reserve known for its large herds of elephants and other wildlife and its beautiful landscapes of rolling hills, savannas, and acacia forests. It’s most famous for the Tarangire River, which provides a permanent water source for the Park’s wildlife, especially during the dry season. Visitors can expect large herds of elephants, zebras, wildebeests, and other animals to come to the river to drink and bathe. The Park also boasts diverse landscapes, including open savannas with towering baobab trees. If you add it to your bucket list, be sure to join a camping safari from Tarangire to the Ngorongoro Crater.
- Recommended Tour: 4 Days Group Joining Camping Safari to Tarangire Serengeti Ngorongoro Crater
- Duration: 4 Days
- Cost: From $950 USD per adult
2. Lamu, Kenya
More of a history buff? Add Lamu in Kenya for a dream summer vacay. Lamu is a historic town located on Lamu Island, off the coast of Kenya. It is one of the oldest and best-preserved Swahili settlements in East Africa, with a rich history that dates back to the 14th century.
The small town is known for its narrow streets lined with traditional houses, elegant mosques, bustling markets, and its donkey-based commute (there are no cars in the area, you get there by boat). Visitors can wander the streets and see what life was like hundreds of years ago. The town is also home to several museums, including the Lamu Museum, which showcases the history and culture of the area.
History aside, Lamu is also an excellent destination for those in need of a relaxing beach getaway. The island is surrounded by miles of pristine sandy beaches, crystal-clear waters, and lush vegetation. You can spend your getaway snorkeling, swimming, sunbathing, and exploring the local area.
- Recommended Tour: Similan Islands Snorkeling Trip From Khao Lak
- Duration: 8-9 hours
- Cost: From $97.56 USD per adult
1. Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Uganda
Located in the southwestern part of the country, Bwindi is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is renowned for being among the world’s remaining habitats for mountain gorillas. Visitors to Bwindi can participate in gorilla trekking tours, where they can observe these majestic primates in their natural habitat. The Park also offers other wildlife viewing opportunities, including bird watching, forest walks, and chimpanzee trekking.
Bwindi is surrounded by stunning scenery, including lush forests, rolling hills, and cascading waterfalls, making it a beautiful destination in its own right.
- Recommended Tour: 3 Days Bwindi Gorilla Trekking tour
- Duration: 3 Days
- Cost: From $1,850.77 USD per adult
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Source : The Travel