4 Best Countries to Study Abroad in Africa

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Community Public Health

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College Study Abroad

Africa is the world’s second-largest and second-most-populous continent on the planet. The people, the landscapes, the animals, and more that make up this magnificent region are diverse and profound. If this is a place that has always intrigued you, you’re in luck with CIEE, as we offer several Africa study abroad programs.  

Read on as we detail the four best countries to study abroad in Africa and prepare for the adventure of a lifetime!  


Dubbed “The Jewel of Africa,” Botswana is an incredible country in the southern region of Africa.  

Known for its well-preserved national parks and astonishing wildlife and biodiversity, Botswana is a top tourist attraction in the region, with safety and affordability a primary focus in the country.  

Your time abroad will take you to Botswana’s capital, Gaborone, where you’ll dive into Tswana culture and history, learn more about wildlife ecology and conservation, and other subjects of interest, including public health, communication, African literature and business, and more.  

Botswana study abroad programs also offer students unique opportunities to volunteer with community organizations and intern at local businesses. This will be an unforgettable experience!  

botswana giraffe

Featured Program: Gaborone Community Public Health  

One of our most exciting Africa study abroad programs is the Gaborone Community Public Health option. With this program, you’ll gain insight into one of the most vital healthcare systems on the African continent. You’ll take courses on biology, development, medicine, and public health and gain firsthand experience observing community public health in action in government-run clinics, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and hospitals.  

Program details:  

  • Length: 18 weeks 
  • Credit: 15-18 semester hours/22.5-27 quarter hours 
  • Eligibility: 2.8 Overall GPA 
  • Costs: $19,850 
  • Featured Course: Public Health and Environmental Health Issues in Botswana  
  • Excursion Highlight: Discover Botswana’s rich history with excursions to Mokolodi Game Reserve, Khama Rhino Sanctuary, and Bahurutshe Cultural Village  


Located in West Africa, Ghana is an amazing country known for its welcoming people, stunning natural landscapes, and deep-rooted history.  

When you partake in a study abroad Ghana program, you’ll live and study in Legon, a suburb of the country’s capital, Accra. Here, you’ll fully immerse yourself in the local culture with opportunities to learn Twi, the country’s most widely spoken language, and take courses relating to West African history, arts, medicine, and tons more. Your excursions include day-long trips to museums, islands, botanical gardens, waterfalls, and many other awe-inspiring attractions. This Africa study abroad program guarantees an adventure.  

Photo for blog post

Featured Program: Legon Arts + Sciences  

Students will have an opportunity to choose from various courses while exploring incredible Ghana during our Legon Arts + Sciences program. Available classes span disciplines from humanities and basic and applied sciences to education, biology, economics, and more. As you study alongside local and international students, you’ll gain insight into topics from a West African perspective and apply your new knowledge to your exciting cultural excursions and beyond. This study abroad Ghana program is fantastic. 

Program details:  

  • Length: 15 weeks  
  • Credit: 15-18 semester hours/22.5-27 quarter hours 
  • Eligibility: 2.5 Overall GPA 
  • Costs: $19,850 
  • Featured Course: Culture and Reproductive Health  
  • Excursion Highlight: Visit the Ashanti region to explore the traditional chieftaincy institution, history, and culture  


Located in northern Africa along the Mediterranean Sea, Morocco is a fascinating and unique place to study abroad in Africa. The country’s rich identity and multicultural society provide an intriguing insight into Morocco’s European, African, and Arabic ties.  

Your Morocco study abroad program is in the country’s capital, Rabat. Here, you’ll attend concerts and festivals, visit ancient ruins, and improve your Arabic language-learning skills.  

This Africa study abroad trip also offers students opportunities to really explore the local community with visits to elementary schools and government agencies, as well as volunteering with a variety of organizations in the region. Studying abroad in Morocco will be an incredible experience.   

Photo for blog post Summer. Study. Intern. Smart.

Featured Program: Rabat Language + Culture 

Take your Arabic and French language skills to the next level with our Rabat Language + Culture program in Morocco. While exploring this captivating country, you’ll boost your cultural knowledge and earn credits toward your degree with course options including religion, business, economics, and more.  

Our Morocco study abroad opportunities also present unique ways to better understand Moroccans’ balance between modernity and tradition.  

Program details:  

  • Length: 15 weeks 
  • Credit: 16-17 semester hours/24-25.5 quarter hours 
  • Eligibility: 2.5 Overall GPA 
  • Costs: $19,950 
  • Featured Course: Contemporary Moroccan Society and Culture  
  • Excursion Highlight: Visit an Amazigh village in Ourika  

South Africa  

Located in the southernmost tip of Africa, South Africa’s diverse landscape, rich culture, and relaxed lifestyle make this an unforgettable Africa study abroad adventure.  

You’ll live and study in Cape Town, one of the country’s capital cities and most important ports. Here, you’ll attend local arts productions, enjoy museum tours and visits to rural communities, and much more. South Africa’s complex and fascinating history will deepen your global perspective and enrich your study abroad experience even further.  

cape town safari selfie student group abroad

Featured Program: Cape Town Arts + Sciences 

Cape Town is a cosmopolitan gem of South Africa, with opportunities to hike and travel to beautiful natural landscapes, visit various museums and galleries, and feast your eyes upon compelling landmarks and memorable activities during this study abroad South Africa program. 

Designed for students of all academic backgrounds, you’ll get to choose from a wide range of courses in anthropology, business, engineering, history, literature, engineering, information technology, politics, and more. You’ll get to do all this while studying alongside other international students at one of the top universities in the region, the University of Cape Town. And, of course, you’ll couple your fascinating studies with an incredible exploration of South Africa.  

Program details:  

  • Length: 19 weeks 
  • Credit: 15-18 semester hours/22.5-27 quarter hours 
  • Eligibility: 3.0 Overall GPA 
  • Costs: $20,850 
  • Featured Course: African Languages and Literature at University of Cape Town  
  • Excursion Highlight: Explore Robben Island, where Nelson Mandela was imprisoned  

How to Study Abroad in Africa  

Now that you know your excellent Africa study abroad program options with CIEE, let’s take a look at how to study abroad in Africa in four simple steps:  

Step #1: Map out your journey.  

Determine when you want to go on your study abroad program: Spring, summer, fall, or winter. Then, choose which Africa study abroad location and program best suit your academic and personal goals.  

While you get organized, it’s a good idea to research any scholarships and grants you may qualify for. We offer millions each year, and your school might even have some financial aid offerings, too.  

Read More: Study Abroad Scholarships: Everything You Need to Know 

Step #2: Get expert guidance.  

Prior to your departure, schedule a time to meet with your school’s study abroad office and academic advisor for some one-on-one support and to make sure your Africa study abroad plans align with your academics and career path. Mention your plans to a parent or guardian, too, and lean on us as a resource if needed. We’re happy to help you sort through any remaining questions you may have.  

Step #3: Get your travel in order.  

Ensure you have all the necessary documents together long before your flight. This includes things like an updated passport.  

It’s also important to submit your CIEE application on time, usually six to nine months before you leave.  Look at our application FAQ videos for extra guidance.  

cape town student smile

Read More: How to Study Abroad: 5 Steps to Apply with CIEE 

Step #4: Pack your bags and go!  

Note the essentials included in our packing list and be on your way! After that, all that’s left is to get ready for the adventure of a lifetime in Africa!  

Your essential documents: 

  • Passport + a photocopy (just in case) 
  • Visa + a photocopy  
  • A second form of valid ID (e.g., driver’s license or government-issued ID) 
  • Plane tickets  
  • Proof of health insurance 
  • Proof of CIEE enrollment 
  • Cash (look up your destination’s currency ahead of time, i.e., Botswana uses the Pula)   

Other essential items: 

  • Comfortable walking shoes 
  • Sunglasses (make sure to look up your destination’s climate ahead of your travels, but you’ll likely need a pair of these)  
  • Camera to capture your beautiful surroundings 
  • One nice outfit for special occasions 
  • Prescription medications, enough for the stay if possible 
  • Preferred over-the-counter medications 
  • Prescription eyewear 
  • Adapters to charge your current tech in different electrical outlets  

Read More: The Ultimate Guide to Your Study Abroad Packing List (10 Essential Items!) 

Africa is Calling 

An Africa study abroad program promises a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Don’t wait to get started on your adventure any longer!