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Travel songs about Africa

As a travel destination, Africa is diverse and inspiring. Its music is intoxicating and has been influential on many Western styles. With such a rich background, it is surprising that African themes don't appear that much in mainstream music culture. While the beats and rythyms have made it through, we would have liked to see more travel songs about Africa make it into this category. We've also included a few songs about the neighbouring Middle-east too.

Africa - Toto
To some, it's one of the cheesiest songs ever written, especially with its rather awkward lyric mentioning Mount Kilimanjaro. However, you can't go by this song without listening to the belting 80s synths at least once. What doesn't kill you. only makes you stronger.

Africa - Chemical Brothers
One of the most fast-paced electronica songs about Africa that makes you feel like you're captured under a spell.

The lion sleeps tonight - Various
A song from Southern Africa that has seen many versions by different artists. Try them all and find the one that suits you most.

Zanzibar - The Hoodoo Gurus
A wonderful song about Africa that covers the idea of bumping into someone who you've met in a foreign land: 'Did we ever meet in Zanzibar, Two Caucasians at the town bazaar?'

I like to move it - Reel to Reel
Not a song about travel at all, but for anyone who has seen the film Madagascar, there is no way you play this song and not think of the African island.

Free Nelson Mandela - Special AKA
From South Africa's darker days, a song about the then-imprisoned Nelson Mandela, featuring great African vocals.

Sun City - Artists United Against Apartheid
Another protest song fromS outh Africa's Apartheid days - it's a shame it hasn't aged too well.

Walk like an Egyptian - The Bangles
No trip to Egypt would be the same without this song or striking The Pose in front an ancient monument.

Madness - Nightboat to Cairo
This strange song about a dodgy boat ride on the Nile will strike a chord with anyone contemplating a felucca ride in Egypt.

Fire in Cairo - The Cure
A song is about passion rather than Egypt's capital, however it's raw sound and fast pace does seem fitting for the chaos of Cairo.

Israel - Siouxsie and the Banshees
It's hardly surprising that the pioneers of Goth and Punk have produced a fairly dark song about Israel.

Tel Aviv - Duran Duran
A lesser-known and moody instrumental track from the New Romantic kings.

Lebanon - The Human League
An odd choice of topic from this early 80s band with a chorus that sounds like 'put the lemon on'.





  More songs about Africa
  • African and White - China Crisis
  • Arabian Knights - Siouxsie & the Banshees
  • Babylon - David Gray
  • Babylon - Scars on Broadway
  • Babylon's Burning - The Ruts
  • Bagpipes From Baghdad - Eminem
  • Bombs Over Baghdad (B.O.B.) - Outkast
  • Dubai Blues - Chickenfoot
  • Fez - U2
  • Fire on Babylon - Sinead O'Connor
  • Jerusalem - Choir of King's College
  • Jerusalem - Esther Ofarim
  • Egypt - Mental as Anything
  • Rivers of Babylon - Boney M
  • Under African skies - Paul Simon


You are here: Africa - travel songs. The ultimate playlist of travel songs about Africa.