Africa is a place in name alone. The land and continent that is Africa is vast, the second largest and most populous place on Earth, home to over a billion people, thousands of ethnic groups, and…
We’ve all heard of see-before-you-die natural wonders such as the northern lights and Niagara Falls and ancient man-made marvels like the Egyptian pyramids and Machu Picchu. They rightly rank high on most people’s travel wish-lists – but that also means sharing the experience of seeing them with hundreds if not thousands of people.
Fortunately the days of quiet contemplation of the world’s mysteries and spectacles are not quite over – there are a surprising number of wonder-filled places that remain off the radar for now. Read on for some alternative inspiration for your bucket list.
Roads less travelled
Smaller but much more numerous than the Egyptian pyramids, Sudan’s Meroe pyramids were built by Nubian pharaohs on the east bank on the Nile more than 4,000 years ago. Though the river has shifted course over the centuries along with the desert sands, 220 pyramids remain part submerged in the golden dunes. It’s a UNESCO World Heritage Site but unlike others you’ll likely find it deserted, plus you can roam freely and even go inside some of the structures.
Read more from source: Seven alternative and little-known wonders of the world | Sasha Wood | The Holiday Place
Archaeologists in Sudan have reopened an ancient pyramid and extracted bones and artefacts, in order to carry out further examination including DNA tests.
The items were found in one of three burial chambers in Meriotic pyramid number 9 in Bajarawiya, a UNESCO World Heritage site where a king from the Nubian period is believed to be buried.
“Pyramid number 9 belongs to King Khalmani who reigned between 207 BC and 186 BC,” Mahmoud Suleiman, the head of a team of archaeologists, told journalists in Bajarawiya, about 250 kilometres (155 miles) north of Khartoum, late Tuesday.
The bones so far discovered are believed to have belonged to more than one person and have been shown to journalists, including an AFP reporter, by a team of archaeologists in Bajarawiya.
DNA tests should shed light on the relation between the bones, while further items are expected to be recovered from another of the pyramid´s chambers, the team said.
“In the coming days we will open” another of the three burial chambers, said Murtada Bushara, a second archaeologist from the team.
This chamber “contains a coffin,” Bushara added.
Read more from source: Sudan unearths bones from pyramid for DNA testing
Everyone knows about the famous pyramids of Egypt. Their vast bulk and precise engineering make them seem like otherworldly artifacts simply dropped onto the desert.
But the pyramid is a common form that ancient—and modern—builders have turned to when creating impressive structures. Here are 10 lesser-known pyramids that deserve just as much attention as the more famous ones at Giza.
10 Mad Jack Fuller’s Tomb
The pyramids of Egypt were tombs and monuments for the pharaohs of Egypt. Most people prefer something more modest for their own resting place, but perhaps you should expect something more from a man known as “Mad Jack.”
In 1777, at age 20, John “Mad Jack” Fuller inherited a large estate in England and slave plantations in Jamaica. With this newfound wealth, he was able to let his eccentricities run free.
When he became a member of parliament, he would ride to London in grand style with heavily armed servants. His temper was formidable and led to him being removed by parliament’s serjeant-at-arms. He was perhaps best known for his follies, however.
Mad Jack liked to build.
Read more from source: 10 Lesser-Known Pyramids – Listverse
IN 1905, British archaeologists descended on a sliver of eastern Africa, aiming to uncover and extract artifacts from 3,000-year-old temples. They left mostly with photographs, discouraged by the ever-shifting sand dunes that blanketed the land. “We sank up to the knees at every step,” Wallis Budge, the British Egyptologist and philologist, wrote at the time, adding: “[We] made several trial diggings in other parts of the site, but we found nothing worth carrying away.”
For the next century, the region known as Nubia — home to civilizations older than the dynastic Egyptians, skirting the Nile River in what is today northern Sudan and southern Egypt — was paid relatively little attention. The land was inhospitable, and some archaeologists of the era subtly or explicitly dismissed the notion that black Africans were capable of creating art, technology, and metropolises like those from Egypt or Rome. Modern textbooks still treat ancient Nubia like a mere annex to Egypt: a few paragraphs on black pharaohs, at most.
The 200 pyramids here date from around 2,700 years ago, and are smaller and narrower in design than their Egyptian counterparts. Since 2011, the area has been an UNESCO World Heritage Site and s becoming increasingly popular with adventurous travellers.
This beautiful medieval city, is known for its decorative, classical-style porcelain. Visit the nearby harbor city of La Rochelle or take to the sea by visiting the Île de Ré, immortalised in the’ “Musketeers” novels of Alexandre Dumas.
KANHA TIGER RESERVE, INDIA
This well-hidden reserve in Madhya Pradesh is home to over 100 tigers as well as monkeys, leopards and impressively diverse birdlife. If you’re looking for a safari a little more off the beaten track, this is one to consider.
Straddling the Wislok river in southeastern Poland, the picturesque town of Rzeszów is forging a reputation as a city break destination. Its beautifully-preserved Old Town and Market Square, plus the nearby 15th century Rzeszów Castle, are real gems for the intrepid visitor.
BRNO, CZECH REPUBLIC
Growing from a fortified 11th century Moravian town, the Czech Republic’s second city is a vibrant university town and cultural center.
Africa has a rich and complex history but there is widespread ignorance of this heritage. A celebrated British historian once said there was only the history of Europeans in Africa. Zeinab Badawi has been asking what is behind this lack of knowledge and looking at the historical record for an African history series on BBC World News.
The Great Pyramid of Giza in Cairo is rightly considered one of the seven wonders of the ancient world. But travel further south along the River Nile and you will find a thousand pyramids that belonged to the Kingdom of Kush, in what is now Sudan.
Kush was an African superpower and its influence extended to what is now called the Middle East.
In 2011, photographer Christopher Michel chanced upon an online course about ancient Egypt and signed up. What was intended to be a diversion led, some six years later, to a voyage of 8,509 miles, to the orange deserts of Sudan.
Although it’s less famous than the grouping of pyramids at Giza in Egypt, the complex at Meroë in Sudan is remarkable. More than 200 pyramids, primarily dating from 300 B.C. to A.D. 350, mark the tombs of royalty of the Kingdom of Kush, which ruled Nubia for centuries. They are recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, yet they remain relatively unknown. The Nubian pyramids differ from Egyptian ones: They are smaller—20 to 90 feet on a side, compared with the Great Pyramid’s 756 feet—with much steeper sides, and most were built two thousand years after those at Giza.
Africa is blessed with amazing natural treasures and we hope you’ll find these destinations and events interesting and tempting to explore.
1. Bwindi Impenetrable National Park (Uganda). The park is part of the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest and is situated along the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) border next to the Virunga National Park. The park provides habitat for 120 species of mammals, 348 species of birds, 220 species of butterflies, 27 species of frogs, chameleons, geckos, and many endangered species.
2. Mosi-oa-Tunya/Victoria Falls (Zambia and Zimbabwe). One of the biggest tourist attractions in Africa, Victoria Falls is undoubtedly amongst the most spectacular waterfalls in the world. Located on the mighty Zambezi River, Victoria Falls is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and it is one of the largest waterfalls in the world.
3. Wildebeest migration (Kenya and Tanzania).
This island between the Atbara and Nile was once at the center of the mighty Kingdom of Kush.
5. Description and History –
The ancient Kush site of Meroe Island is located between the Nile and Atbara rivers and for a long time the area was the center of the ancient Kingdom of Kush (1070 BC – 350 AD). The area is made up of the city of Meroe and its accompanying cemetery, which from 591 BC until 350 AD was the capital of the kingdom and the location where the Kings of Kushite lived. The area also included two other settlements that were associated with the capital that also served as religious centers, Naqa and Musawwarat es-Sufra. While the city of Meroe is located between the rivers, its cemetery, and other two sites are located in the semi-desert area nearby.