Elevated 1483 metres above sea level in the Northeast of Zimbabwe, this metropolitan city in the Mashonaland Region offers a subtropical highland climate, one of the most favourable year round, throughout the world. Perhaps one of the main reasons it’s the most populous city in Zimbabwe. Who doesn’t want to live in the ‘Sunshine City’?
Originally Salisbury, what was then known as a Fort, was founded by Cecil John Rhodes in 1890. It was later declared a city in 1935 but was only renamed to Harare after Chief Neharawa in 1982, 2 years after independence and little has held it back since.
Known for its wide avenues of dusty red earth, sky scrapers and Jacaranda’s in blossom, this city has a different appeal considering it is the leading political, financial, commerce and communications centre for the country. Looking beyond the buildings, parks and gardens one almost forgets it is a “working” city trading in tobacco, maize, cotton, citrus, gold and manufacture of textiles.
Not only is Harare host to the major gateway airport for the country, but is home to the University of Zimbabwe, National Heroes Arc and the National Botanical Gardens. Over 900 tree species in a city is almost unheard of, but Harare stakes its claim on this and boasts a great number of things to do as a city rich in culture and history.
If you’re interested in art and visiting museums, Harare has much to offer and you wouldn’t want to miss the National Gallery showing works of contemporary art and visual heritage or the Zimbabwe Museum of Human Sciences, where you can view, amongst other things, the oldest wooden object ever found in Sub-Saharan Africa at some seven hundred years old.
Other highlights in the area include the Chapungu Sculpture Park, Mukuvisi Woodlands, Epworth Balancing Rocks and The Kopje, a granite hill with views over the city. Otherwise like most cities, Harare promises some great shopping and local flea-markets if you’re more into retail therapy and in terms of food, don’t forget to try Sadza, a stiff maize meal porridge eaten with just about everything or Chibuku, which is the local beer. An acquired taste for most but certainly worth the experience to say you’ve tried it.
More In Zimbabwe
Zimbabwe is a small country and its diverse attractions are packed into short easy drives or even quicker, easier flights. Expect beautiful waterfalls and rivers, exceptional wildlife safaris and spectacular scenery from classic African plains to vast river valleys, mystical hills and misty mountains.
Mana Pools National Park
Mana Pools National Park occupies a vast flood plain along the Zambezi River in northern Zimbabwe. The plains support a diversity of wildlife, the massive mahogany and acacia trees providing cover for all the plains species and the 2,000sq km of seasonally flooded river frontage, ox-bow lakes and pools providing permanent water for a large population of wildlife.
Situated in a scenic area of granite outcrops, miombo woodland and right next to one of several recreational lakes in central Zimbabwe, the ancient city of Great Zimbabwe is a wonderful diversion between north, south, east and west. The Lake Muturikiwe features an excellent game reserve with scenic mountains framing images of rhino and antelope at the water's edge. Further afield is Antelope Park, a small private game reserve dedicated to restoring Africa's lion population to a happier state.
Gonarezhou National Park
At just short of half the size of Hwange National Park, this park of 5053sq km, is found in the south eastern corner of the Masvingo Province. Smaller but certainly not inferior. This park boasts about being further off the normal northern tourist route and of a rugged terrain, therefore offering an untouched wildlife and African bush experience.
“I highly recommend you use Namibia Tours & Safaris if you're planning a visit to this country. Great logistics, great value, really personal service. Very fun to work with!”
“I feel that Edward is honest, extremely helpful, and a true professional. I will recommend this company and Edward's expertise to anyone heading to Africa. A perfect trip!!”
“We had an 18-day private guided tour (Namibia, Botswana and Vic Falls) organised by the NTS team. Our consultant Wilmari was amazing both in preparation to and during our travel. Responsive, personable and diligent she put together an excellent itinerary.”
“Our fly-in safari was a life experience we treasure. The scenery, people and arrangements were all outstanding. Bianca of Namibia Tours & Safaris put together the trip of our dreams. We highly recommend her!”
“Namibia Tours and Safaris and their consultants are the best. Ulrike, our consultant, helped us over a 2 year period to plan our 4x4 Safari details. She had the patience of a saint and the insight and knowledge of a true local.”
“Chantelle did a fantastic job in organizing our self-drive trip through Namibia. Nothing was too much hassle and Chantelle was so helpful and responsive throughout the whole process.”
“Having tried to organise this trip myself I was very appreciative of the knowledge and support given by Ashlee who could not have been more supportive.”
“The organisation and response from the initial contact was fast and flawless thanks to Bonique our tour consultant. Her recommendations were perfectly tailored to our needs with a lot of foresight and local knowledge.”
“The service and help we got from Tessa was fantastic, as a result we had a tremendous trip and loved everything in Namibia.”
“Janine from NTS proposed us a great trip that suited our needs and wishes finding the right accommodation and great places. We had a wonderful stay and it was nice to meet with her in Swakop. Definitely recommend!”
“I have no words to express my gratitude to Carmen Scott and all the NTS team for their excellent work. Keep it up and all the best!”
“I cannot find any hassle or negative point for the organisation of this trip. Outstanding material, good accommodation, simply perfect. What a great company!”