7 Tourist Attractions in Angola
Angola, the largest country in Africa, leaves tourists in awe with its abundant attractions and scenic beauty. This might seem surprising for a country better known for its long civil war (1975-2002) and the struggle to protect its wildlife from poachers.
Angola is attempting to make a name for itself on the global stage and claims to be one of the fastest growing economies in Africa, with various forms of mining exports and a booming tourist industry. From national parks with lions, elephants, and gorillas to forgotten but beautiful buildings from the Portuguese colonisation, Angola boasts an expansive collection of locations with natural value and cultural and historical significance. If you are lucky enough to visit Angola any time soon, these insanely beautiful tourist attractions should top your list!
The Tundavala Fissure
The Tundavala Fissure offers a spectacular panoramic view of the surrounding area at an altitude of about 2,600m above sea level. It is one of the best natural wonders of Angola. Apart from steep cliff faces and unusual rocks, the Tundavala Fissure also has patches of forest landscapes and grasslands.
The fissure is located at a height between Lubango and Namibe. The place is perfect for hiking, and many people go sightseeing in areas near it.
One of the most stunning waterfalls—not only in Angola but in the whole world—is Kalendula Waterfalls. This geological beauty of nature lies on the Lucala River in Malange, Angola. Kalendula is 105 metres high and is considered to be one of the highest waterfalls in Africa. In contrast to well-known African waterfalls, such as Victoria Falls, Kalendula is still a haven of tranquillity. One can often admire and enjoy this spectacle alone.
Valley of the Moon
The capital of Angola is the city of Luanda, and the Valley of the Moon is about 40km south of the capital city. The valley derives its name from having a landscape similar to that of the moon (moonscape). It is an amazing and extensive geological formation created by the interaction of the sea, wind, rain, and time and finally shaped by centuries of rain and erosion, giving rise to cliffs with sharp pinnacles and deep gullies. The cliffs provide an amazing view of the Atlantic.
The valley’s unique moonscape gives you the experience of being on the moon—all without having to board a space rocket or leave the earth’s gravitational field. If you love geology, you will definitely find this tourist site quite interesting.
Black Rocks at Pungo Andongo
Associated with tribal legends of the area’s native Mbundu people, Black Stones of Pungo Andongo feature mysterious and ancient rock formations resembling various animal shapes.
Pungo Andongo is a place of myth and legend and served as capital of the Kingdom of Ndongo. The footprints of King Rei Ngola Kiluanji and Queen Rainha Ginga are said to be embedded in the rocks. Rumour has it that while the queen was taking a bath in a brook at the foot of the rocks, she was seen by soldiers, and as she fled, she left behind her footprints. Small impressions that could be footprints can easily be spotted and are protected by a concrete shelter.
Luanda Island, also known as Cape Island, is one of those idyllic places sought after by tourists and locals for rest and leisure. The sand is soft, the water is warm, and it is summer at least nine months of the year. The island is not really an island but a small peninsula that separates the city of Luanda from the Atlantic Ocean. Here you will find myriad bars, restaurants, and street markets by the sea.
Luanda Island is the go-to place for interesting nightlife and parties! Some of the beaches are inside the restaurants/bars and are therefore more private, while others are completely public. The public beaches, however, aren’t the cleanest and can get really crowded. The typical dishes available are Muzongué and Mufete, both made with fresh fish. Visitors also have the opportunity to taste and buy fish and seafood just caught by the Muxiluanda, the inhabitants of the island, whose main activity is fishing.
This legendary lake can be found in Moxico, eastern Angola. It is the largest lake in the country and serves as an important tourist spot. Despite being situated just outside of Cameia Park’s boundaries, the lake teems with wildlife, including rare bird species and aquatic life. The lake is an impressive 12km in length and sits at roughly 1,000m above sea level. The lake’s unusual waves always head to the east of the lake. This has given rise to the myths surrounding this body of water. In folklore, these waves are believed to be a supernatural force meant to scare people from fishing the lake.
Iona National Park
Iona is the largest national park in Angola and is situated in the most south-western part of the country. It covers an expansive area of over 15,000 square kilometres. Although national parks were hit hard by animal poaching during the civil war, efforts to replace and restore the wildlife in the park are underway. The park is home to animals such as the springbok, ostrich, and cheetah as well as to indigenous people who, according to anthropologists are the most culturally intact people on the continent.
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