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12 African Countries You Didn’t Realize You Wanted To Go To

It's a big, beautiful continent. Get to know a little more of it by applying to the Peace Corps today!

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1. Benin

Where: Located in West Africa

Why you need to go: Benin is home to Ganvie, a city floating on stilts above Lake Nokoué, known as the "Venice of Africa." Boats are the primary mode of transportation for its 20,000 residents.

2. Lesotho

Where: Located in southern Africa, completely surrounded by South Africa

Why you need to go: Lesotho is a mountainous country and "the only independent state in the world that is entirely above 1,000m (304m) altitude." This means it offers many stunning views, skiing, and 300 days of sunshine a year!

3. Cameroon

Where: Located in Central Africa, bordering Nigeria

Why you need to go: When it comes to landscape, Cameroon is extremely diverse and offers visitors everything from rain forests to "chocolate brown" sand beaches.

4. Guinea

Where: Located in West Africa

Why you need to go: The weather stays hot and humid all year long, perfect for visiting some of the beautiful islands surrounding the mainland.

5. Ethiopia

Where: Located in what is known as the Horn of Africa, bordering Sudan and Kenya

Why you need to go: Ethiopia is a haven for any foodie! Be sure to try injera, a bread-like local staple made to eat with stew.

6. Mozambique

Where: Located in Southern Africa, with a coastline that stretches alongside the Indian Ocean

Why you need to go: Mozambique is famous for its stunning beaches and Indian Ocean islands, and its capital Maputo offers the hustle and bustle of a city for a change of pace!

7. Namibia

Where: Located in Southwest Africa, bordered by Angola and Botswana

Why you need to go: Explore the world's highest sand dunes in the Namib and Kalahari deserts by sandboarding or quadbiking.

8. Burkina Faso

Where: Located in West Africa

Why you need to go: Burkina is known for its arts scene, and the capital city of Ouagadougou hosts a variety of festivals throughout the year. It is widely regarded as the African capital of cinema, so the outdoor cinemas around the city are not to be missed.

9. Comoros

Where: Located off the east coast of Africa

Why you need to go: The slow pace of life on the islands is perfect for people looking to take in its natural beauty. The capital city Moroni is located at the foot of a volcano and is full of incredible architecture.

10. The Gambia

Where: Located in West Africa

Why you should go: Life in The Gambia means a chance to explore the rich traditional cuisine, which includes delicious stews, couscous, and fried fish.

11. Rwanda

Where: Located in East Africa

Why you need to go: Rwanda is one of only three countries where you can see endangered mountain gorillas. With a ban on plastic bags and a car-free zone, the capital city Kigali is heralded as the cleanest city of Africa. Furthermore, all citizens take part in a community service day once a month.

12. Zambia

Where: Located in Southern Africa

Why you need to go: Zambia is one of the safest countries in the world. Its natural landscape and wildlife mean that any time spent here is sure to be action packed. Highlights include walking safaris and visiting Victoria Falls, which forms the border between Zambia and Zimbabwe.

The possibilities are endless. Find out where you can be of service — and discover a brand-new corner of the world — with the Peace Corps.

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