WTA Names Tanzania Africa’s Leading Destination

Serengeti National Park
Written by See Africa Today

Tanzania remains ‘Africa’s Leading Destination’ for the third year in a row, World Travel Awards (WTA) 2021 indicates. Its national parks, wildlife and palm-fringed beaches booked it yet another vote as the continent’s leading destination.

Interestingly, its golden charm; Serengeti National Park was named the ‘Best National Park in Africa – WTA cites. It is a major feat for Tanzania but, one mired in some twist.

Despite Tanzania naming as Africa’s Leading Destination, the number of visitors coming and revenue from tourism is discordant. For Instance, the number of tourists in Serengeti National Park hasn’t increased compared to other parks in the region.

Yet, this East African country priding itself in being mankind’s cradle gets fewer tourists per year compared to Morocco in the north. Morocco, a desert country whose tourism overtures are rarely mentioned beats Tanzania hands down in the number of tourists annually.

Morocco Desert Safari

Morocco Desert Safari. [Photo/Goway Travel]

Morocco Has More Tourists Than Tanzania

Data by World Data Info shows international tourists arrivals from 2016 to 2019 never fell below 10 million. In 2016, there were 10.68 million visitors, 2017 (11.54 million), 2018 (12.49 million) and 2019 (13.11 million).

The numbers drastically reduced to 7.25 million tourists arrivals in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In comparison, Morocco got more tourists in the last four years by more than double.

The Swahili country hasn’t had as many tourist visits as Morocco in the last four years. This is despite being named Africa’s Leading Destination by WTA. In 2017, 2.26 million tourists visited Tanzania.

A further 2.46 million visited in 2018 and rose to 2.62 million in 2019 before spiralling down to 621, 000 in 2020 when the pandemic was at its peak.  All factors constant, this was seven times less the number of tourist arrivals in Morocco over the same period.

In fact, Tanzania does not even make the top ten of most visited countries in Africa!

Why Does Morocco Get More Tourist Arrivals Than Tanzania?

Numbers don’t lie. While Tanzania is awash with scintillating parks and palm-ridged beaches, it is not enough to draw in more tourists. Ironically, Morocco, a desert country has more tourist arrivals than any African country.

So, what is the charm with Morocco? It has to be the rich North African culture. There is no place in the world you get to experience the magic of the land like in Morocco.

Morocco’s landscape and the scenery are unrivalled, bringing with it adventure and exciting escapades. And Marrakesh – a city in the western part of the country is a tourism hub.

The once imperial city hosts the Atlas Mountains. It gives the best mountain adventure while the valleys surrounding offer numerous exciting activities visitors can engage in. Over and above the Atlas Mountain sceneries, Marrakesh is a cultural hub awash with deep tones of the Moroccan people. From hotels, mosques to food; you want to visit the city over and over again.

Additionally, desert safari in the Sahara Desert is a drawcard for adventure lovers – not the usual wildlife escapades Tanzania offers. Also, Fez city compliments the all-time favourite Marrakesh. It is a deeply historical city that was once under imperial rule.

Essaouira is a bubbly beach town that has its charm too not to mention the capital, Casablanca.

Charming Destinations In Tanzania

Serengeti National Park is one of the world’s renowned wildlife sanctuaries with thousands of wildlife. The ‘Serengeti’ comes from a Maasai name meaning the ‘endless plains. It characterizes the topography of the vast national park covering approximately 30,000 square kilometres.

Serengeti National Park

Serengeti National Park in Tanzania. [Photo/Tanzania High Commission In Nairobi]

Its history dates back to 1952 when it was established and is today’s home to the big five and a wildebeest migration spectacle in the world. Wild animals in their thousands cross over to Serengeti from Maasai Mara in Kenya between July and October. It has a population of two million animals.

Zanzibar is a leading travel masterpiece for Tanzania. Its tantalizing coastline dotted by beaches has many people visiting this country. But Zanzibar is more than just a beach vacation. Great restaurants, wonderful live music options. You will find many festivals within the city and its historic centre of Stone Town. Everything you need to know is right here.

On the other hand, Mount Kilimanjaro’s dazzling features put Tanzania’s tourism on a pedestal. It is a popular destination for wanderlusts looking for a different experience in Tanzania.

Mount Kilimanjaro is the world’s highest free-standing mountain in the world. The mountain towers high in the plains of Tanzania to measure 19,341-ft. Its summit has tormented the courage of thousands of mountain climbers since 1889 when the first successful climbers made it to the snow-capped peak.

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About the author

See Africa Today

Pharis Kinyua is the editor of See Africa Today. With over seven years of experience in digital media, he has a soft spot for African tours and travel. His drive is to tell the rest of the world what Africa offers, the best accommodation facilities, national parks, culture, shopping malls and best airline deals to travel to Africa

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