We love Africa and we’re extremely proud of all the UNESCO World Heritage Sites that are found all over the continent. We’ve already had a look at the South Africa World Heritage Sites so we thought we’d do the same for East Africa. If you’ve ever wanted to travel to Kenya or Tanzania, here are a few places you should add to your bucket list. What East African heritage site is your favourite?
East African Heritage Site #1: Stone Town, Zanzibar
When people think of Zanzibar, they automatically imagine stunning beaches and 5-star resorts. There is that side to the famous island but that’s not all it has to offer. Since 2000, the capital city of Zanzibar, Stone Town, has been protected because of its historical and traditional importance. The town is one of the best examples of a Swahili trading town and has been a hot spot for trading along East Africa for hundreds of years!
You can get guided tours around Stone Town that are not to be missed. Did you know that City Lodge Hotel Dar es Salaam is just a 10-minute drive from the Zanzibar ferry terminal? If you’re planning a trip to Zanzibar, you can stop over in Dar es Salaam on your way and enjoy a lovely stay at our newest hotel.
Ngorongoro Crater & Serengeti National Park
Did you know that two of the world’s most beautiful World Heritage Sites are next door to each other? The Serengeti National Park and Ngorongoro Crater have been drawing tourists from all over the world for decades, and for good reason.
Let’s start with the Ngorongoro Crater. It has been a World Heritage Site since 1979 because of its huge biodiversity, Massai culture and the crater itself. The crater is from the remnants of a volcano and is the world’s largest caldera in the world!
The Serengeti National Park has been on the list of World Heritage Sites since 1981 because of its world-famous migration of Zebra and Wildebeest. Every year herds of Zebra and Wildebeest follow the rains and migrate to new areas. This event is one of the most breath-taking sights of the African savannah and is a must for any animal lover!
Kilimanjaro is the highest mountain in Africa standing at 8,895 meters high above the Tanzanian savannah. Unlike most of the world’s highest peaks, Kilimanjaro isn’t part of a mountain range. It’s a free-standing volcanic peak that rises out of a grassland. This makes it the most iconic and recognisable mountains in Africa.
Lamu Old Town
Heading to Kenya? You can’t miss the opportunity to visit Lamu Old Town. The town’s been a World Heritage Site since 2001 because it’s the oldest and best-preserved Swahili settlement in the whole of East Africa. For the last 700 years, the town has been inhabited and built out of mangrove timber and coral stone and that gives it its character.
If you’re heading through Nairobi and need a place to stay, we’ve got your back with a selection of great hotels to suit your required comfort level and pocket: Fairview Hotel, City Lodge Hotel at Two Rivers Mall and Town Lodge Upper Hill.
Ready for another amazing East African heritage site? High in Northern Kenya, you’ll find one of the world’s saltiest lakes! Lake Turkana has been a World Heritage Site since 1997 because of its outstanding animal and plant life research opportunities. The lake is a yearly stop over for huge flocks of migrating birds and is the breeding ground for crocodiles, hippos and, wait for it…. venomous snakes! The stunning colour and saltiness of the lake have led to it being nicknamed the jade lake.
We haven’t even had time to get through half of the amazing heritage sites dotted around East Africa. If you think you’re ready for an East African adventure, do your own research and see what other incredible sites there are to explore. Have you decided which East African heritage site is on the top of your bucket list?