An internship abroad is so much more than the practical skills you learn. It’s about meeting new people, discovering new parts of the world, and learning about yourself along the way.
What better place to do this than Africa? It’s one of Intern Abroad HQ’s most popular continents amongst interns, with 22 unique placements in Tanzania and Zanzibar and 16 across South Africa, including Cape Town and Kruger National Park.
There’s so much to love about interning in Africa, but it’s the friendly culture and natural beauty that makes it a crowd favorite. We’ve put together this guide on Intern Abroad HQ’s best Africa internships and what past interns have to say about their experience in these destinations.
Already have a destination in mind? Skip ahead:
Best internships in South Africa
Top internships in Cape Town
Known for its stunning landscape, surf beaches and adventurous activities, Cape Town is an ideal destination for those in search of an exciting urban hub. Internships in Cape Town begin every Monday and placements are spread throughout the main city center and the surrounding suburbs. Interns are accommodated in a safe student neighbourhood that is close to urban attractions and vibrant entertainment.
Check out what our recent interns have to say:
“This internship has gone a long way in supporting my long-term goals as an Occupational Therapist through my exposure to a whole new field. Psychological/clinical occupational therapy is not very common in America and so I have benefited a lot from being here. Being in Cape Town itself was eye-opening and humbling. The landscape alone is so breathtaking and amazing, and you can find so many adventurous things to do everywhere you look, from skydiving and surfing to parasailing, paragliding and hiking.”
“My internship role involved working as a solicitor in a small legal firm. The role incorporated many tasks and responsibilities, including attending court, interviewing clients, updating files, filing, typing up legal correspondence, attending parliament, and checking in on client welfare in penitentiary facilities.
I found the people of South Africa to be very welcoming and generous. Being from Australia, there are many cultural similarities, including a love of the outdoors, a preference for a Braai, and the prevalence of English as a language across the nation.”
Top internships in Kruger National Game Park, Sodwana Bay & more
For those pursuing a career in conservation, we offer unique environmental internships in South Africa’s most iconic wildlife reserves. These are located in the Balule Game Reserve at Kruger National Park, the Gondwana Game Reserve near Mossel Bay, and Sodwana Bay in iSimangaliso Wetland Park.
As a conservation intern, you’ll be surrounded by like-minded individuals while learning from local experts and professionals in Africa’s most stunning locations. Here’s what to expect…
“The most rewarding thing about my internship was definitely the PADI Rescue course. It taught me so much about myself, boosted my self-esteem and confidence in diving. The stars at Ngoboz, the Tollas Ghat, and swimming with sharks while whale calls echo through the ocean are definitely some highlights of living here.”
“Kruger National Park represents a mini-world, with people from all different backgrounds. It was a wonderful experience to meet people of varied language and culture, all with interest in environmental conservation.”
Best Internships in Tanzania
Top internships in Arusha
Arusha has a vibrant, friendly culture - one of the reasons all of our interns leave feeling like it’s their second home. It’s also the gateway to a range of world famous safari national parks and Mt. Kilimanjaro, Africa’s tallest mountain.
Internship placements in Arusha are located within close proximity to comfortable, modern accommodation and cater to those interested in pursuing a career in the fields of Medicine or Education.
“I was lucky that I felt at home in Arusha just a few days after arriving. We were a big group of interns and everyone was going through their own journey of adapting. But we knew we had a safe place to feel vulnerable, to ask for help and to share all the amazing and not so amazing experiences.
The Pharmacy Department in our placement was really well structured. I worked in every Department but mainly in the Care & Treatment Center. The pharmacists and technicians are not only very hardworking and super professional, but the nicest, kindest, loveliest, most welcoming people I’ve ever met.”
“Interns complete a fixed rotation to observe surgeries and gain an understanding of how emergency and surgical departments manage patients and staff in an unpredictable environment. You won’t be active in surgeries or trauma treatments yourself, but you are able to reflect on procedures with doctors afterwards to learn about how they are carried out and ask questions.”
Top internships in Zanzibar
Zanzibar is a tropical island set just off the coast of Tanzania. Renowned for its white sand beaches, bustling markets and laid back lifestyle, this is one of our most unique internship destinations in Africa.
“It was amazing getting to know the local Tanzanian staff so well, meeting patients from so many different tribes, and learning about the different customs, languages, and regions of Tanzania. I also learned a lot about practicing medicine in a low resource setting, which required a greater reliance on my basic clinical skills. One of the skills I am most proud of learning is basic life-saving skills in emergencies, such as placing intravenous lines, starting oxygen therapy, and giving life-saving medications. Perhaps most importantly, I have gained resiliency in extremely emotionally and physically challenging situations.”
“As a Psychology intern, I created lesson plans on mental health and ways for our clients to improve their own. Implementing the knowledge and skills I learned at University with the practical skills and experience in this internship make me feel capable of being able to be a great therapist back in America.
One surprising thing I learned about the culture in Zanzibar is that everyone takes their time with everything - it is a much slower pace of life . The most common phrase I heard while there was ‘Hakuna Matata’ which means ‘no worries’ or ‘no problems’. They live by that phrase! If you are late to work, ‘Hakuna Matata’, if you are having issues with planning a tour, ‘Hakuna Matata.’”
Want to start an international internship from home?
How to plan your internship to Africa today
Apply online first. The application process is free, only takes five minutes and there’s no commitment needed at this stage!
After applying, you’ll hear from our Global Internships Manager within 2 working days (if not sooner). We’ll email you details about how to confirm your internship placement. Have questions now? Please feel free to contact us.
To secure your place, you’ll need to register online after your application has been accepted. This means taking care of the US$449 deposit. This enables us to provide services and pre-departure support, ensuring that you have a great internship experience abroad.
Once you’re registered, the adventure begins! Your Internships Manager will support your pre-departure planning and you’ll receive a comprehensive information guide that will prepare you for an internship focused on personal and professional development abroad.