TOP 10 COUNTRIES ON MY BUCKET LIST (Part 1)

madagascar-1-httpwww-ritebook-in201405the-alley-of-the-baobabs-madagascar-html
Avenue of the baobabs                                                                                Source: twistedfilter.com

1. MADAGASCAR

Why: Diverse array of landscapes, African royal history.
My budget: KES 152,000/=  (1520 USD)

Where I’d visit:

  1. Avenue of Baobabs, where you can walk amongst dozens of the majestic trees – some of which are over 800 years old. I’ve seen the photo so many times and can’t wait to be there myself.
  2. Royal Hill of Ambohimanga-a historical village that was once home to Madagascar royalty. The wall surrounding the village was made in 1847 and was constructed with a mortar made of lime and egg whites! It has some of the departed kings artifacts and that would be interesting to see.
  3. The rova (palace) to learn about Madagascar’s royal history.
  4. Tsingy rouge park-described as ‘erosion art’, this park is home to very colourful and textured rock formations
  5. Isalo National Park-because of it’s diverse terrain and landscapes. Another image I always see along with the avenue of baobabs is one of this park.
  6. Being an island, I’d visit the beaches and take part in beach activities; snorkeling, beach walks and my favourite, sipping a drink while I watch the sun set.
  7. Tsiribihina River- canoing by this river and camping by its banks certainly sound like fun.
lesotho
Katse Dam                                                                                                        Source: Pinterest

 2. LESOTHO

Why: Breathtaking landscapes, early man history, dinosaur evidence.
My budget: KES 142,000/=  (1420 USD)

Where I’d visit:

  1. Katse Dam and Botanical Gardens, because of the picture avove. I’d sit at the spot where this was taken all day. This is a water project responsible for dispensing supplementary water to South Africa.
  2. Kome Cave Dwellings-This is a national heritage site that carries important history. The cave dwellings (2 centuries old) are carved and built under towering sandstone rocks. The descendants of the original inhabitants (Basia and Bataung clans) still live here which makes it all the more exciting.
  3. Dinosaur Footprints and rock art. Lesotho is an archaeologist’s haven with a number of dinosaur footprint locations and rock art by the San people. Imagine going to an art gallery, only the art is ancient carving on early man’s shelter!
  4. Roma where Lesotho’s national university lies. It is surrounded by high mountains, often snow capped. It would be interesting to be a student here.
  5. Maletsunyane falls- I just want to see all the waterfalls in the world!
senegal
Pink Lake (Retba)                                                                     Source:toppopular.blogspot.com

 3. SENEGAL

Why: Slave trade outpost, Burst of culture, the music, African art, unique
landscapes.
My budget: KES 114,000/=  (1140 USD)

Where I’d visit:

1. In the capital, Dakar, I’d visit the art museums,the markets, the African Renaissance monument that has come to be synonymous with Dakar and Keur Moussa for mass spiced with indigenous music. I’d sample the night life as music is part of the fabric of Dakar, with influences from different cultures. I’d certainly catch a Youssou N’Dour performance at his Dakar night club.
2. Goree island-I have always been deeply interested in slave trade and the history of the horrors of that period. Goree Island was a big outpost of slaves and people visit to honour their ancestors and remember the events that took place. It is a UNESCO world heritage site.
3. Pink lake (Retba)-Who wouldn’t want to see a pink lake? It owes its colour to micro-organisms and its high concentration of minerals.
4. Senegambian stone circles-Think England’s Stonehenge of a smaller scale. Yes! I also just found out!
5. Lompoul Desert. It almost feels out of place in Senegal’s green and sandy-beaches landscape. I’d attend the Festival du Sahel which is an annual music festival that happens here.

ancient_roman_city_volubilis_morocco_africa_davidsbeenhere8
VOLUBILIS.                                                                                                      Source: davidsbeenhere.com

4. MOROCCO

Why: Ancient civilization and architecture, Arab markets, music and culture.
My budget: KES 156,000/=  (1560 USD)

Where I’d visit:

  1. My background in architecture obviously has a big hand in having this as a destination. I’d visit some world famous historical monuments; Hassan II mosque, riads which are ancient (some are century old) intimate homes that have been converted to hotels.
  2. The oldest University in the world, University of Al-Karaouine in Fes. This will be accompanied by a tour of the old walled-city, the Medina of Fez/Fes el Bali. This entire section of the city is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
  3. A tour to yet another UNESCO listed site, the dramatic ancient ruins of a Roman city, Volubilis.
  4. Morocco is home to a variety of landscapes which I would all love to explore; from snowy mountains to desert dunes to seas and waterfalls and colour-themed towns.
  5. The souks (Arab markets) for shopping. This is always a good idea when visiting a predominantly Muslim town. It’s proven to be quite the experience every single time.
  6. Traditional music festivals which I’d research before landing.
zambia
Victoria falls.                                                                                       Source: walkinmyshew.com

5. ZAMBIA

Why: Diverse landscapes, unique safaris, water sports/activities, Culture
My budget: KES 123,000/=  (1230 USD)

Where I’d visit:

  1. Victoria falls-The smoke that thunders, I assume would be everyone’s main attraction.  At a height of 108m (think of a 36 story building), this is a majestic show of nature’s power. As I’m not very comfortable with heights, I’d pass bungee jumping and go for microlighting over the falls.
  2. Sunday crafts market in Lusaka. This, I assume would be the equivalent of Maasai market in Nairobi which never gets old. Such markets give a good representation of art of the local people.
  3. River Zambezi Canoe Safari from Victoria Falls. I’m not that big on safaris as my father ensured we did them almost excessively growing up (and I’m Kenyan so I’ve seen a lot of game locally). However, canoe safari is certainly enticing. Other activities I’d do at the river are waterboarding.
  4.  Western Zambia for the Kuomboka ceremony. This marks the ceremonial journey of the (the Lozi king) from his capital in the flooding plains a new one on higher ground. There’s a lot of cultural activities including canoe paddling. It happens in March or early April and I can only hope to be visiting around that time.
  5. The Lusaka National Museum, art galleries, the Lusaka Playhouse theatre for a play and the Kabwata Cultural Village.

https://akenyannomad.com/2017/02/02/top-10-countries-on-my-bucket-list-part-2/

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