When you’re on an overland adventure or out on a hike in Africa, you might be thinking to yourself it would be nice to take a cool dip in a river or a lake.
While this sounds pretty inviting, you should think twice before jumping in while in Africa. After all, this isn’t Wisconsin or Switzerland.
The danger of crocodiles or hippos is very real. For instance, hippos kill almost 3,000 people a year in Africa.
What’s more, strong currents or tides can often make swimming in Africa dangerous, and if the water looks too calm, it can be susceptible to parasites like bilharzia — definitely something you don’t want to get!
So before you take a dunk, be sure to ask a professional guide or area expert who knows the area well. Only after confirming the area is free of any danger should you get in.
On the other hand, there are some great places to swim in Africa.
Taking a dip off the coast of South Africa can be refreshing, if a bit chilly in parts, and there are also many gorgeous waterfalls where it’s perfectly safe to swim — even from the top of the falls.