Southern Africa

Southern Africa, the southernmost region of Africa, is known for its wide diversity of ecoregions. This includes extensive forests and grasslands, as well as the vast Kalahari desert. It also includes beautiful beach and mountain areas.

While population growth and poaching have had a negative impact, significant numbers of various wildlife species remain, including white rhinos, lions, leopards, impalas, kudu, blue wildebeest, vervet monkeys, and elephants.

Wildlife safaris are popular with travelers, with many game reserves that range from basic camping to five-star luxury. Diving, surfing, wine tours and other activities are also popular.

English is an official language in nearly all countries in the region, and most urban dwellers speak it fairly well.

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Africa (Southern) (photo by Wikimedia Commons)

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Countries in this region:

A Natural Atmosphere includes a diverse range of destinations with outdoor-oriented features, including both water-based (beaches, rivers, lakes, etc) and land-based (mountains, forests, deserts, etc). It also includes specific outdoor activities, ranging from water adventuring (eg, kayaking, sailing) to land adventuring (eg, hiking, biking).

Natural Interests tend to be:
(a) outdoors-oriented, and therefore more dependent on weather conditions
(b) less easily accessible and more physically demanding than other destination categories.

In some cases (eg, rafting and climbing), this includes a significantly increased degree of adventure (or danger, depending on one's viewpoint).

Botswana

Atmosphere: Nature    
Best Weather: May, June, July, August, September

 BotswanaBotswana is a land-locked country located in southern Africa. It is one of the most sparsely populated nations in Africa, and also one of the most economically developed. Botswana is well-known for the high concentration of wildlife. In addition to the delta and desert areas, there are grasslands and savannas, where blue wildebeest, antelopes, and other mammals and birds are found. Botswana is also known for its extensive expanse of the Kalahari Desert, and the indigenous San (bushman) people who still live there.
 
A Natural Atmosphere includes a diverse range of destinations with outdoor-oriented features, including both water-based (beaches, rivers, lakes, etc) and land-based (mountains, forests, deserts, etc). It also includes specific outdoor activities, ranging from water adventuring (eg, kayaking, sailing) to land adventuring (eg, hiking, biking).

Natural Interests tend to be:
(a) outdoors-oriented, and therefore more dependent on weather conditions
(b) less easily accessible and more physically demanding than other destination categories.

In some cases (eg, rafting and climbing), this includes a significantly increased degree of adventure (or danger, depending on one's viewpoint).

Malawi

Atmosphere: Nature    
Best Weather: June, July, August, September

 MalawiMalawi is a landlocked country in south-central Africa. Despite its small size, Malawi has long been popular with travelers. An important reason it is remarkable natural and scenic variation. Lake Malawi has a maximum depth of 2,300 feet (701 m) and diverse fish and other wildlife. In addition, Malawi also has significant mountain areas that rise as high as 8,000 ft (2,438 m) in the north and 10,000 feet (3,048 m) in the south. Trekking and homestay programs have become popular in recent years, taking advantage of Malawi’s attractions.
 
 
A Natural Atmosphere includes a diverse range of destinations with outdoor-oriented features, including both water-based (beaches, rivers, lakes, etc) and land-based (mountains, forests, deserts, etc). It also includes specific outdoor activities, ranging from water adventuring (eg, kayaking, sailing) to land adventuring (eg, hiking, biking).

Natural Interests tend to be:
(a) outdoors-oriented, and therefore more dependent on weather conditions
(b) less easily accessible and more physically demanding than other destination categories.

In some cases (eg, rafting and climbing), this includes a significantly increased degree of adventure (or danger, depending on one's viewpoint).

Namibia

Atmosphere: Nature    
Best Weather: June, July, August, September, October

 NamibiaNamibia borders the Atlantic Ocean in southern Africa. It has an ethnically mixed population, with at least nine different languages. Situated between the Namib and the Kalahari deserts, Namibia has the least rainfall in sub-Saharan Africa. Its Coastal Desert is one of the oldest deserts in the world with sand dunes, created by the strong onshore winds, that are among the highest in the world. Other important landscape features include the Skeleton Coast, with its extensive marine sealife, and the Kalahari Desert.
 
A Natural Atmosphere includes a diverse range of destinations with outdoor-oriented features, including both water-based (beaches, rivers, lakes, etc) and land-based (mountains, forests, deserts, etc). It also includes specific outdoor activities, ranging from water adventuring (eg, kayaking, sailing) to land adventuring (eg, hiking, biking).

Natural Interests tend to be:
(a) outdoors-oriented, and therefore more dependent on weather conditions
(b) less easily accessible and more physically demanding than other destination categories.

In some cases (eg, rafting and climbing), this includes a significantly increased degree of adventure (or danger, depending on one's viewpoint).

South Africa

Atmosphere: Nature    
Best Weather: January, February, March, April, October, November, December

 South AfricaSouth Africa is located at the southern tip of Africa at the intersection of the Atlantic and Indian oceans. After an extended period of segregationist apartheid policies, today’s South Africa is a multiethnic society encompassing a wide variety of cultures, languages, and religions. It is the most developed and industrialized economy in Africa, as well as a major political power in the region. South Africa is geographically and biographically diverse, with an extended and varied coastline, interior plateau areas, portions of the Kalahari Desert and significant mountain areas.
 
 
A Natural Atmosphere includes a diverse range of destinations with outdoor-oriented features, including both water-based (beaches, rivers, lakes, etc) and land-based (mountains, forests, deserts, etc). It also includes specific outdoor activities, ranging from water adventuring (eg, kayaking, sailing) to land adventuring (eg, hiking, biking).

Natural Interests tend to be:
(a) outdoors-oriented, and therefore more dependent on weather conditions
(b) less easily accessible and more physically demanding than other destination categories.

In some cases (eg, rafting and climbing), this includes a significantly increased degree of adventure (or danger, depending on one's viewpoint).

Zambia

Atmosphere: Nature    
Best Weather: May, June, July, August, September

 ZambiaZambia is a landlocked country in south-central Africa. Much of the country is made up of high plateaus, with some hills and mountains, dissected by river valleys. The Zambezi River falls about 100 metres (328 ft) over the 1.6 km (0.99 mi) wide Victoria Falls, Africa’s largest waterfalls. It is also home to an extensive and diverse wildlife population.