A beach in GhanaIn the last decade or so, Africa has defied all odds and risen from the peripheral of the world stage. The economy is booming and cities which were previously lifeless and covered in dust are rapidly growing into major cities with prominent skyscrapers and malls to feed a growing middle class. But despite the allures of modernity, the continent still boasts of untapped natural beauty waiting to be discovered.  Coupled with its unrivaled history, Africa should make it on your next travel list. Considering that Africa is a vast continent with 54 independent states, below are destinations to explore across four leading regions.

1. Nairobi National Park, Kenya
Africa boasts of the world’s only National Park within a capital city. Nairobi National Park is located roughly seven kilometers from East Africa’s biggest economy, Kenya. Owing to its close proximity to the city, Nairobi’s skyscrapers are easily visible from the park. It covers an area of 117.21 square kilometers and has a large and diverse wildlife population. The park is home to many species including  giraffe, ostrich, vulture, buffalo, baboon, black rhino, lion, zebra, cheetah among others.

2. Robben Island, South Africa
Further in the South, a visit to Robben Island is a must see. The Island is a South African heritage site and was home to the world’s most famous prisoner and Africa’s favorite leader Nelson Mandela. Tourists to the island can visit the cell where Mandela lived for 18 years of his 27-year detention. Famous people who have visited the cell include Presidents Barack Obama and Bill Clinton.

3. Ancient Egypt
A tour of Africa is not complete without a stopover at one of the world’s six independent civilizations.  Ancient Egypt boosts of multiple achievements including the construction of monumental pyramids and temples, a system of mathematics, the first ever known ships, agricultural systems etc. The Egypt museum also houses the much famed mummies and other historical treasures.

4. Atlantic Coast in Ghana
To conclude your trip across Africa, you should consider Ghana’s Atlantic Coast. The area is lined with old castles which date back to 17th Century. The castles were built by several European powers to store goods for export before they were converted into prison dungeons to lock up slaves. The two most popular are St George’s Castle and Cape Coast Castle and Museum.