The second-largest continent in the world is rarely at the top of most people’s list of countries to visit. The reasons for this often include health concerns such as the risk of being infected with malaria or dengue and the lack of medical institutions to treat any urgent health matters that arise during the trip. Other concerns are higher crime rates, terrorism and kidnapping.
However, while this might be true for some of the most dangerous African countries such as South Sudan, Yemen, Somalia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Libya and others, this is not the case for other countries in the continent. There are currently 10 countries in Africa whose overall rank, based on the Global Peace Index (GPI) score is below 60, which are considered safe to travel to.
Botswana ranks second after Mauritius on Africa’s 10 safest countries list:
Botswana – 1.693 GPI
Botswana is a landlocked country in southern Africa. Nearly 40% of its territory is taken up by wildlife areas and nature parks. It is also home to the largest population of elephants in the world. Interestingly, based on its GPI, Botswana is, in fact, safer than many European countries, including the United Kingdom!
And the other countries on the list are:
1. Mauritius – 1.544 GPI
This beautiful little country situated in the Indian Ocean is known for its incredible beaches, lagoons and reefs. The crime rate in Mauritius is very low, and the only incidents that do happen tend to be petty theft.
3. Ghana – 1.776 GPI
Ghana, a country in West Africa, is known to be the first sub-Saharan country to be freed from colonial rule. Overall, the crime rates are very low, although there are occasional incidents of more violent crime.
4. Zambia – 1.794 GPI
Zambia is a landlocked country and is home to very diverse wildlife, nature parks and safari areas.
5. Sierra Leone – 1.82 GPI
While the country is relatively crime-free, there are occasions where tourists might be robbed, especially in urban areas. It is recommended to avoid walking alone in the late hours, to avoid crowds and minimise using public transport.
6. Senegal– 1.824 GPI
Until recently, Senegal was was plagued by a high level of internal conflict. However, after a truce in 2019, the country’s overall safety index has significantly improved.
7. Tanzania – 1.85 GPI
Tanzania has extremely beautiful nature such as the Serengeti National Park, various beautiful beaches, and it is home to the tallest peak on the African continent – Mount Kilimanjaro. Furthermore, three of Africa’s largest lakes can be found in Tanzania. It is almost impossible to believe that there is so much beauty concentrated in a single country.
8. Namibia – 1.861 GPI
Namibia, a country situated in southwest Africa, has an astonishing range of wildlife that includes the largest in the world cheetah population. Currently, it is estimated that there are over 3,500 cheetahs in Namibia.
The country is also home to the oldest desert in the world – the Namib Desert – which has some of the highest sand dunes. After the Grand Canyon of Yarlung in Tibet, the Fish River Canyon in Namibia is the second largest canyon in the world.
9. Liberia – 1.877 GPI
Liberia lies on the West African coast and is known for not only being the only Black state in Africa that has not been colonised but also as the oldest republic on the continent. Gripped by a horrific civil war in the 1990s and early 2000s, the country has made progress to make it to number 8 on the list of the safest countries in Africa.
10. Malawi – 1.885 GPI
Malawi is a landlocked country dubbed the “The Warm Heart of Africa” due to the friendliness of the locals. Although it is one of the most underdeveloped countries in the world, its flora and fauna are incredibly rich.
Contrary to the usual prejudiced views, Africa does in fact have safe countries where tourists should not fear for their lives. Based on their GPI, some of these countries are even safer to visit than countries like the United Kingdom, Spain, Greece and France! So take a walk on the wild side and consider these fantastic African destinations when booking your next vacation in 2021 and beyond!
Disclaimer: This list of the safest countries in Africa is a compilation of the African countries considered safe for travel. Safety is not guaranteed and common sense, precautions and street sense must be observed at all times when traveling in such destinations – as is the case with any other holiday destination.