Wonders of Southern Africa That Will Blow Your Mind

Photo of Orianne Gambino
2 December 2016

Southern Africa offers magnificent scenery and a vibrant selection of activities to do. Set in exceptional natural backgrounds, each of the following wonders of southern Africa promises a surprising and unique experience.

View from Piton des Neiges | © Nautiljonon/Flickr

Indian Ocean Sunrise – Réunion Island

At 3,070 meters, the massive extinct volcano Piton des Neiges is one of the highest points in the Indian Ocean. The peak features an incredible 360-degree view of Réunion Island – a colorful landscape punctuated by green mountains, volcanoes, waterfalls and lagoons. Piton des Neiges and Réunion Island’s cirques, ramparts and volcanoes are classified UNESCO world heritage sites. After a day’s hike and a short night stopover, getting to the top of Piton des Neiges with a headlamp to see the sun rising over the ocean is the ultimate way to experience a sunrise.

Devil’s Pool | © Michael Baynes/Flickr

The Ultimate Infinity Pool – Victoria Falls

The stunning Victoria Falls are at a marginal frontier between Zambia and Zimbabwe. At 108 meters high and 1.7 kilometers wide, the falls carry about one million liters of water per second. It seems completely crazy to be able to swim at the edge of it, yet, formed by erosion, an ultimate infinite pool offers the unique opportunity to swim at the top in what the local tribe Kololos calls Mosi-oa-Tunya (the smoke that thunders). Accessible only between mid-August and December, depending on the water levels, this ultimate pool is a high-adrenaline experience, which has earned it the name Devil’s Pool.

Kakaoland | © WikiCommons

Kaokoland – Namibia

The desert terrain of Kaokoland makes it a tourist hotspot for those seeking a more rugged experience. The area is home to the Himba indigenous people, who lead a semi-nomadic lifestyle. Famous for their jewelry and dress, the Himba are proud of their traditional practices. Just north of Etosha National Park, and host to the city of Opuwo, the terrain is good for trekking, rafting and being immersed in unspoiled, natural scenery. Safari tours are popular, as wildlife such as the desert elephant, giraffes and zebras can be watched in their natural habitats. Other notable scenic places to visit include the Epupa Falls, and the Ondurusa rapids.

Tofo Mozambique | © Erik Cleves Kristensen/WikiCommons

Scuba Mecca – Mozambique

Mozambique is a surprising destination, offering a large selection of activities. One of the wonders of the country is its rich maritime life. The warm waters of the Indian Ocean are home to numerous species, from the smallest fish to the impressive whale sharks and manta ray. Tofo, also called ‘Scuba Mecca’ is situated in the south-west of the country, close to a manta reef. It is one of the best diving destinations in the world, and offers the amazing opportunity to swim with the awesome whale shark.