Lesser known things to do and attractions in East Africa

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A trip to East Africa should be on every travel lover’s wish list. The stunning region is home to the most beautiful sights that one can see, from large herds of spectacular animals, exotic birdlife, blue oceans, vivid greenery, diverse landscapes, and aesthetically pleasing historic architecture. The locals are friendly, down to earth, and helpful, and visitors can easily find comfortable and luxurious accommodation. There are many things that one can do in East Africa, such as snorkelling in the ocean, eating street food in Stone Town, going on a game drive, boating on Lake Manyara, or enjoying a safari in the Serengeti. But for those who want to do something unique or extraordinary, here is a list of some lesser known things to do, and attractions to see, during their trip to East Africa.


  1. Gorilla Trekking

In Uganda and Rwanda, tourists can go gorilla trekking in places such as Bwindi, Mount Kigali, and Volcanoes National Park. Travellers must get a permit and hike for 1-2 hours with a trained guide. As the muddy path passes through the gorilla’s natural habitat, the adventure seekers are surrounded by dense vegetation. They can spot the gorillas from a safe distance, and enjoy this enriching and extraordinary experience.


  1. Vumawimbi Beach

Another lesser known location in East Africa is the private and serene Vumawimbi Beach in Pemba Island. At this untouched stretch of white sand, travellers can enjoy the sweet smelling air or swim in the crystalline water. This heavenly location is peaceful, and isolated, as all hotels are located on the west side, so tourists can relax in the tranquility.


  1. Saiwa Swamp

Tourists can visit Saiwa Swamp National Park, the smallest national park in Kenya which is home to the unique Sitatunga Antelope, a rare aquatic antelope. The view is stunning as visitors can see the exotic trees, the acacia and riverine forest, and the colorful birdlife.


  1. Full Moon Party

Many tourists do not know that they can enjoy the unique and unforgettable experience of a full moon party at Kendwa Beach. At these late night parties, tourists can enjoy the food and culture, and meet locals dancers, singers, acrobats, and fire-eaters!


  1. Kondoa Irangi

Tourists can take an enriching trip to Dodoma, Tanzania to observe amazing rock art carved into a hillside. The ancient Kondoa Irangi Paintings are said to be over 50,000 years old, and are seen on 150 to 450 decorated rocks.


  1. Takawiri Island

Takawiri Island is one of the lesser known beaches of Lake Victoria and is located in Kenya. Here, tourists can relax on the white sandy beach, watch the swaying palm trees, and enjoy the cool breeze. A visit here can be relaxing and enjoyable, away from the crowds.


  1. Kilwa Kisiwani

Travellers who like history and heritage can explore Kilwa Kisiwani, a small island south of Dar Es Salaam in Tanzania. At this UNESCO World Heritage Site, tourists can enjoy dhow rides, or tours of the well-preserved ruins of Swahili architecture. They can also visit the 15th-century Great Mosque, which used to be the largest mosque in the region!


  1. Samatian Island

Travellers can also visit the remote and private Samatian Island located in Lake Baringo, Kenya. Visitors can enjoy the breathtaking view, watching the colorful birds and fish, the scenic landscape, clear skies, lush greenery, and the stunning sunsets.


While East Africa is home to many popular tourist sites, travellers could also enjoy lesser known activities, such as relaxing on Samatian Island, Takawiri Island, or Vumawimbi Beach, learning about history in Kondoa Irangi or Kilwa Kisiwani, gorilla trekking in Rwanda or Uganda, bird watching in Saiwa Swamp National Park, or partying on the beautiful Kendwa Beach! East Africa is an extraordinary tourist destination and should be on every travel lover’s wish list as it is home to some of the best tourist spots in the world!

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