Drakensberg Mountains, South Africa

Four Top African Trekking Destinations

When it comes to mountain climbing destinations around the world, Africa might not be the first place you think of. The African continent has much to offer however, with mountainous regions to explore from the very north to the very south, from Morocco’s Atlas Mountains all the way to South Africa’s famous Drakensberg. The continent also has a surprising variation in environment, meaning that every destination is a new experience. Following is a list of some of the best, to give you an idea of what’s on offer.

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Drakensberg Mountains, South Africa
Drakensberg Mountains, South Africa © Shayan (USA)

The Atlas Mountains

Located in the very north of the continent, in Morocco, the Atlas Mountains serve as a haven for hikers and climbers. This mountainous region covers a wide area, so there’s plenty to discover with treks suitable for all abilities. The highlight of the region is Jebel Toubkal, North Africa’s highest peak (4,167m). The trek to the top can be a challenging one but it is worth if for the views over the surrounding landscape. Trekking holidays in the region start from around $900-$1500 per person for a 5-day trek, depending on the time of year and cost of flights.

Mount Kenya

As the name would suggest Mount Kenya is located in Kenya. The mountain is Africa’s second highest, with its tallest peak, Batian, standing at 5200m. Reaching that height requires some technical experience however and many choose to take the trek to the lower Lenana peak (4985m). Mount Kenya is located at the heart of a national park, surrounded by forest and moorland and offers up some of the region’s best walks. Trekking holidays based around the mountain start at around $850, depending on which of the peaks you visit and which route you take.

Mount Kilimanjaro

A Kilimanjaro climb isn’t for the feint of heart, but there’s a reason this mountain is one of the most popular trekking destinations in Africa. Mount Kilimanjaro is the highest mountain in Africa and the highest freestanding mountain in the world (5,895m). A climb to the top will take you through five different climatic zones, each with their own feel, and provide breathtaking views out over Tanzania. Treks up Mount Kilimanjaro can be expensive however, with places on group holidays costing anywhere between $2,500 and $5,000, mainly due to the extensive preparation needed to complete the trip to the summit.

Mount Meru

Mount Meru is located near to Mount Kilimanjaro and is often used to practice acclimatization runs for its taller neighbour. That’s not to say that Mount Meru isn’t worth basing a trekking holiday around however. This beautiful volcano is the second tallest in Tanzania (4,566m) and treks to the top take you through a variety of terrain, from lush rain forests to rocky moors. The region is also ideal for wildlife spotting, with buffalo, baboons and giraffes all common along the lower reaches of the trail. A trip to the peak takes 2-3 days and costs around $1,200.

Hopefully, this guide gave you a good taste of the mountains you can explore on this stunning continent, so next time you’re looking for trekking opportunities around the globe, why not take a closer look at Africa?

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