Travel

Unexpected Africa

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Find out some of the more unusual things you can get up to on the continent of Africa

When you imagine a holiday in Africa, you picture safaris, pyramids and volunteering at orphanages, however there are many more exciting activities to jump in to, that you wouldn’t have expected to be available to tourists in Africa. On the Cape of South Africa you can experience the thrill and adrenaline rush of sand boarding, which is described as “the excitement of surfing with the freestyle maneuvers of snowboarding”. Sand boarding is a unique way to view the natural beauty of the cape from the top of the sand dunes. With beginner to expert runs and instructors on hand, this exhilarating activity is a great way to see the Cape of South Africa, whilst experiencing the rush of an extreme sport. Another unusual and exciting activity to take part in in South Africa is the African Beetle Marathon; a yearly event which sees classic VW Beetles competing in an epic road marathon. The race takes competitors through Swaziland, Botswana and Namibia, therefore is a great way to explore southern Africa and experience places off the beaten track. It’s also a great way of meeting other challengers and travellers from around the world.

Of course  there are some more traditional and classic sights to be seen in Africa, for example Victoria Falls on the border of Zambia and Zimbabwe, one of the largest water falls in the world. However this iconic destination has been made a little more exciting, a variety of companies now offer the exhilarating experience of white water rafting down the Zambezi River which lies below the falls. This trip is an ultimate must for any extreme sport enthusiasts, the rapids are classed as extremely difficult, long and violent and there are even a few small crocodiles in the river, therefore isn’t tailored for the faint hearted. Although it may seem daunting the full and half day trips provide safety equipment and you’ll never forget the amazing views you experience whilst being drenched by the falls.

If your idea of a perfect holiday is something a little more relaxing, then Africa has some less extreme but more diverse cultural activities to offer too. The Fagnoon Art School in Egypt, situated in the shadows of Saqqara Pyramid in Cairo, is a great place to get away from the tourist hustle and bustle of Egypt. Release all your creative energy in the arts center where you can re-create all the awe inspiring sites you’ve observed from the previous days of sightseeing. An alternative way to relax and indulge in Egypt is a trip to Cleopatra’s bath. Slip into the warm, bubbling, natural spring water and unwind in the glorious sun or in the shade of the palm trees. Cleopatra’s Bath is the most famous of Siwa’s many oases and is very popular with the locals as a place to socialize and relax. However don’t expect to be hopping into the spring in your swim wear, it is a local custom to bathe fully clothed.

These are just a small selection of the incredible and unexpected activities you can get involved in whilst travelling in Africa, proving that it’s not all big cats and small villages.

Written by Kathryn Lewis

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