After living through a pandemic, many of us have grown a great appreciation for the outdoors and we’re ready to travel again. If that’s you, we’ve got the perfect vacation idea for you! Are you looking for an incredible vacation where you can be one with nature, explore wildlife, and experience a unique culture? If so, East Africa is an ideal destination.

To take your experience up a notch, East Africa cruises offer a memorable adventure. We’re talking exotic safaris, delicious cuisine, beautiful weather, and welcoming locals. Take a cruise to East Africa to conveniently enjoy a variety of experiences in multiple places.

Experiencing East Africa Cruises and What To Do

Cruises to Africa are one-of-a-kind and Africa travel is unlike any other destination. The biggest draw to East Africa and what makes it stand apart from many other travel destinations is its unspoiled nature. From deserts to beaches, mountains, and plains, there seems to be no end to what you can see outdoors when you hop off your cruise ship!

The scenery around Africa, especially on the east coast is picturesque – you’ll certainly need to bring your camera! No matter the cruise port you stop at, you’re sure to meet kind people, try tasty foods, and encounter fascinating animals.


So, where can you cruise to in East Africa?

There are a variety of ports along the east coast of Africa, all of which offer a magical experience.

Mombasa, Kenya 

Kenya’s second-largest city, Mombasa, is the country’s most popular tourist destination and is home to a cruise port. Mombasa is a coastal city that sits along the Indian Ocean in southeastern Kenya. This special city offers a variety of memorable experiences for those traveling to Africa. It’s a cultural melting pot where you can find diverse architecture, food, and activities.

Things to do in Mombasa:

  • Get unmatched views of sea animals at Mombasa Marine Park & Reserve.
  • Wander around to see Hindu temples, mosques, churches, and more cultural sites.
  • Enjoy white sands and lush greenery at Africa’s award-winning beach, Diani Beach.
  • Visit unique exhibits at Fort Jesus, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
two monkey in Kenya, Africa
Monkeys at Diani Beach. Photo by Oliver Cox on Unsplash

Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

Tanzania is East Africa’s largest country and its most frequented tourist attraction is Dar es Salaam cruise port. There are also two other ports in this magical safari destination. If you’re looking for breathtaking landscapes home to countless animals like rhinos, elephants, leopards, and more on your trip to Africa, Tanzania is certainly a place to visit.

Things to do in Dar es Salaam:

  • Go snorkeling or scuba diving off the coast.
  • Take a trip to Mbudya Island for a quiet day on the beach.
  • Explore a national park or forest safari. Tanzania is home to 22 national parks!
  • Walk around the Village Museum where you can encounter traditional homes of over a hundred ethnic groups.
Matemwe Beach, Zanzibar, Tanzania; east africa cruises
Matemwe Beach, Zanzibar, Tanzania. Photo by Crispin Jones on Unsplash

Djibouti, Djibouti

The horn of Africa, Djibouti is a small country on Africa’s northeastern coast. Djibouti (the city) is the capital and largest settlement in Djibouti (the country). Though small, Djibouti is one of the best places in Africa for a safari adventure. It’s often overlooked, but if you’re looking for a destination that’s off the beaten path, Djibouti is a great place to go. The scenery is unmatched and the culture is captivating.

Things to do in Djibouti:

  • Relax on the white sands of Khor Ambado Beach.
  • Wander around Africa’s largest forest at Day Forest National Park.
  • Take remarkable photos at Lac ‘Assal (Lake Assal), Africa’s lowest point and the third-lowest in the world.
  • Go sightseeing to check out iconic landmarks like the Hamoudi Mosque.
cruise ship on water; cruise vacation
Norwegian Cruise Line. Photo by Alonso Reyes on Unsplash

Maputo, Mozambique

Mozambique’s cruise port in Maputo, situated on Africa’s southeastern coast. The country’s capital and largest city is most known for its interesting colonial and modern architecture. There are a variety of activities to enjoy in Maputo including watersports and sightseeing. Maputo also boasts an eclectic cultural scene and many restaurants worth trying.

Things to do in Maputo:

  • Take a day trip to check out Kruger National Park where you can find lions, leopards, rhinos, elephants, and buffalos.
  • Walk around and take in the culture and history. The uniquely beautiful train station and the Natural History Museum are interesting places to visit.
  • Enjoy the nightlife. There’s music and dancing galore in Maputo.
lions at Kruger National Park in Mozambique
Kruger National Park in Mozambique. Photo by Diego Morales on Unsplash

Which cruise lines go to Africa?

A number of cruise lines visit Africa. These include Norwegian Cruise Lines, Crystal Cruises, Oceania Cruises, and more. Ships that take cruises to Africa will vary by location. Working with a travel agent is the easiest way to plan your trip and choose the best cruise line!

What is the best time to cruise to Africa?

The best part about East Africa cruises is that the weather is almost always beautiful. Again, this will depend on where you’re going, but places on the east coast like Kenya, Tanzania, and Djibouti, Mozambique almost always offer temperate weather. March is the only month where you may come across a lot of rain.

If you’re looking for fewer crowds, Spring and Fall are usually the best times.

Should I delay going on a cruise during the COVID-19 pandemic?

Having faced the COVID-19 pandemic, many people are understandably more cautious than ever about travel. The good news is that, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), cruises are safe for those who are fully vaccinated. On the other hand, those who are prone to illness or aren’t vaccinated should avoid cruises during the pandemic.

It’s also said that cruise lines are cleaner than ever right now. This is because most ships are taking extra precautions for cleanliness and sanitation. Additionally, some cruise lines such as Norwegian Cruise Line and Carnival Cruise Line are requiring all staff and passengers to be fully vaccinated. Others are requiring proof of vaccine or a negative COVID-19 test.

Each cruise line should share its COVID-19 precautions to ensure you feel comfortable with the measures being taken.

Final Thoughts 

East Africa cruises provide a one-of-a-kind experience. East Africa is one of the best exotic vacation destinations where you can experience Africa safaris, eat some of the world’s best cuisine, and meet extremely kind locals.

If you’re looking for expert help to plan your next cruise vacation, contact Evolution Travel!

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