We’ve compiled 17 of Africa’s most awe-inspiring and unconventional boltholes in our latest edition of Travel Africa magazine to help you plan your next safari.
Here, we share our top three picks to give you a tantalising taster of the unique African accommodation on offer. So dive in and don’t forget to subscribe to our magazine for more African hotel inspiration.
Where: The Manta Resort, Pemba Island, Zanzibar Archipelago, Tanzania
The Underwater Room at Manta provides a unique night’s sleep. There is nothing quite like peering out of your bedroom window into the deep-blue sea and watching fish swim past.
The floating island is made up of three levels: the bedroom, the landing deck with toilet facilities and a roof furnished with a soft sun bed designed for sunbathing during the day and charting the stars at night.
If you’re tired of gazing at the constellations, the underwater spotlights attract the shyer marine life such as squid, and octopus occasionally stick themselves to the glass panes.
Underwater rooms are appearing all over the world in such places as Sweden, the Maldives and Dubai, but this is the only one in a blue hole whose edges are lined with coral and cool sealife.
It is just the perfect place to sit and watch the world swim by and is certainly one of the most unusual places to stay in Africa.
Sleep in a tree
Where: The Dove’s Nest, The Hide, Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe (pictured), and Tarangire Treetops, Tarangire National Park, Tanzania
Elewana’s Tarangire Treetops and the Dove’s Nest, at The Hide in Hwange, make every child’s dream of sleeping in a treehouse a reality.
This is a way of keeping the safari going after you leave the Land Rover, as the wildlife roam freely around, and sometimes under, the rooms.
The views are staggering from the top of a tree, with wildlife as far as the eye can see, since the grasslands are a hive of activity.
As the sun dips below the horizon, the honeydew light creates a haze that puts guests into a daze.
At night, the atmosphere can be overwhelming as the stars blanket the sky, and animals call to each other. There is nothing as elevating as a stay in a place like this.
Sleep in a cave
Where: Kagga Kamma Nature Reserve, Cederberg Mountains, South Africa
From a distance, the boulders seem to shimmer. Step closer and you’ll notice that glass disturbs the rockface.
Behind each window pane is an exquisitely furnished room perfectly integrated into the environment.
Staying at Kagga Kamma is like time travelling to the Stone Age but with an en suite, a double bed and a tea-and-coffee station.
Each cave has a sliding door that opens onto a small terrace so guests can enjoy the astonishing vista of the fynbos plains and the mountains beyond.
Like any hotel, the Cave Suites are separated into different price points. The Premium Cave Suite is situated at the furthest end of Kagga Kamma, giving guests unrivalled views.
And for those seeking more privacy, the Honeymoon Cave Suite is tucked away out of sight, blocked by a giant piece of sandstone.
Want more accommodation inspiration?
We feature 14 more of our picks for the most unusual places to stay in Africa in our magazine with full, high-res beautiful images.
Be sure to subscribe now and get our exclusive content from our expert team to help you plan your perfect safari.