Africa is often thought of as a single place in the media and pop culture, like when Australia’s shadow foreign affairs spokeswoman Tanya Plibersek referred to Africa as a country. But the continent contains 54 countries, thousands of cultures, an estimated 2,000 languages, and widely divergent landscapes. Africa is home to the largest desert on earth (the Sahara) and the highest free-standing mountain in the world (Kilimanjaro). More than 600 new species have been discovered in Madagascar in just the last decade. I’m constantly blown away by how much variety there is in Africa. I’ve sandboarded down giant orange dunes in Namibia, walked along white sand beaches in Tanzania, trekked with gorillas in Uganda, and eaten at BBQ joints in the South African townships (and fancy restaurants just a few miles away). LEARN MORE!