Second-largest of the Earth's seven continents - covering about 30,330,000 sq km (11,699,000 sq mi), which makes up about 22 per cent of the world's total land area.
Egypt's capital city, Cairo, is the largest city in Africa with an estimated 9.2 million population
Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania
Lake 'Asal (153 m/502 ft below sea level) in Djibouti
The River Nile is the longest river in Africa and in the world. It is formed from the Blue Nile, which originates at Lake Tana in Ethiopia, and the White Nile, which originates at Lake Victoria.
Lake Malawi contains the largest number of fish species of any lake in the world.
It is the world's oldest desert, and the only desert in Africa inhabited by elephant, rhino, giraffe and lion.
Many fastest land animals live in Africa - the cheetah (70 mph), wildebeest, and lion.
South Africa has a penguin colony, thanks to the cold Antarctic currents on the west coast near the Cape.
The island ofMadagascar is the home of the world's largest as well as the smallest chameleons! Almost half of the world’s chameleon species live here.
The largest seal colony in the southern hemisphere is a Cape Cross in Namibia.
The world's biggest frog (the goliath frog) is found in Cameroon.
The Nile crocodile is the planet's largest living reptile - growing to an average length of 5 m.
The African elephant is the largest living land mammal.
An elephant can weigh up to 6-7 tons and has no natural enemies for he is not a predator and there is none large enough to challenge him.
Having a wingspan of only ½", the smallest butterfly is in the world is found in South Africa. It is known as the Dwarf Blue Butterfly.
The only place where shools of fresh water sardines are found is in Lake Tanganyika.
Africa has a number of overlapping cultures. The most conventional distinction is that between sub-Saharan Africa and the northern countries from Egypt to Morocco, who largely associate themselves with Arabic culture. Whereas, the nations to the south of the Sahara are considered to consist of many cultural areas, particularly that of the Bantu language group.
Divisions may also be made between French Africa and the rest of Africa, in particular the former British colonies of southern and East Africa. Another cultural difference is that between Africans living traditional lifestyles and those who are essentially modern.
African art too reflects the diversity of African cultures. The oldest existing art from Africa are 6,000-year old carvings found in Niger, while the Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt was the world's tallest architectural accomplishment until the creation of the Eiffel Tower.
African music is one of its most dynamic art forms. Egypt has long been a cultural focus of the Arab world, while remembrance of the rhythms of sub-Saharan Africa, particularly west Africa, was transmitted through the Atlantic slave trade to modern samba, jazz, rap, and rock and roll. Modern music includes the highly complex choral singing of southern Africa and the dance rhythms of soukous(a musical genre that originated in the Congos during the 1930s and early 1940s, that gained popularity throughout Africa). A recent development of the 21st century is the emergence of African hip hop.