Are you ready to visit the ultimate Motherland? Did you know that the East African region, specifically Olduwai, the paleo-anthropological site on the eastern Serengeti Plain, has been credited as being the “Cradle of Mankind?” Part of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area in northern Tanzania, this area boasts the most recent evidence that all of humankind originated from this area and migrated to the rest of the world.
As you can conclude, East Africa is full of rich history and traditions and is worth the visit. Here’s a short list of historical facts that make East Africa so special.
- The Nile River is the world’s longest river, covers a vast majority of East Africa, and stretches over 11 different countries.
- The world’s hottest desert, The Sahara, reaches into Sudan. It is also one of the harshest environments in the world.
- The world’s largest (elephant), fastest (cheetah), and tallest (giraffe) animals can be seen in East Africa. The elephant weighs in at more than six tons; the cheetah can run up to 60 mph; and male giraffes can grow up to 6 meters tall, while females can reach approximately 4 to 6 meters.
- Once under British control, Kenya, Uganda, Zanzibar, and Tanganyika (modern Tanzania) are all part of the EAC (East Africa Community).
- East Africa has the highest elevation on the continent and is home to many large plateaus.
- The Great Rift Valley expands from the Red Sea to the Gulf of Aden, across the Ethiopia Highlands, and continues into Tanzania. Located in the middle is Lake Victoria whose resources fuels the Kenya, Tanzanian, and Ugandan economies.
- Lake Victoria is largest tropical lake on the globe and the largest lake in Africa’s Great Lakes region.
- Lalibela’s rock-hewn churches in Ethiopia, created in seventh and thirteenth centuries, are often called the “New Jerusalem,” with their twisting tunnels, elaborate architecture, and majestic courtyards. Even more spectacular, these churches are still used today!
- Once one of the most powerful cities along the coast of East Africa, Kilwa was sadly destroyed after the Portuguese bombarded the island in 1503. It is now home to ancient palace ruins and royal buildings. Since many tourists do not flock here, if you visit, you’ll feel like the entire islands is yours alone!
- The famous, nomadic Masai Tribe relocates from Kenya to Tanzania on a regular basis. Known for their rich culture, striking red hair, and husbandry and warrior skills, this interesting tribe is bound to keep you fascinated – and maybe even a little speechless.
East Africa also boasts many national parks and wonderful beaches of old. Be sure to embrace as much history this glorious area offers. Hopefully, you will leave connected (or reconnected) to Mother Earth and then come back to share how truly spectacular a vacation to East Africa really is!