Sunset over the River Chari 3 Photo by Ben Allen via Flickr Creative Commons

If you want to truly know Africa, Chad is a part of the continent that is unknown to most travelers. From the laid-back capital of N’Djamena to natural attractions like Lake Chad and Zakouma National Park, this often-overlooked country will surprise and delight.

Set in the heart of Africa, Chad has been plagued by political strife and national security issues, but is nevertheless a great jumping off point for discovering the Sahara. For the adventurous, Chad is a wonderland of a fertile southern soil and the harsh northern desert. A typical day can be enjoyed camel racing followed by a cold beer at the country’s top brewery, or discovering the wonders of the historic quarter of N’Djamena and interacting with its friendly locals.

N’Djamena is Chad’s centerpiece, and visitors traveling between Cameroon and Niger often stay at least a day or two. The vast expanse of the Sahel never fails to attract explorers, while Lake Chad entices those who want a relaxing boat ride to enjoy the lush green scenery so uncommon in the dusty desert.

There is no denying that the country may be one of the poorest in the world and that foreigners may need to take extra precautions for personal safety because of unpaved roads, high travel costs, scorching hot weather, and internal conflicts, but those who are willing to take on the challenge are rewarded with the warmest possible welcome and discover one of the most secretive colorful and fun cultures imaginable.


  • Appreciate the oriental appeal of Abéché, the Ouadai sultanate’s former capital
  • See Lake Chad August to December for a glimpse of crocodiles or a hippopotamus drifting by
  • Watch camel racing in the Tibesti Mountains and meeting the Toubou tribe
  • Visit the Gala Brewery to sample Moundou’s beer, one of the best in Chad
  • Explore the daily market of the historic quarter of N’Djamena to buy jewelry and colorful handmade rugs
  • Visit Zakouma National Park to see lions, giraffes and elephants

Click here to learn about Things to Do in Chad