3. Rock-hewn churches of Lalībela
Lalībela, located in north-central Ethiopia, is famous for its rock-hewn churches, which date back to the late 12th and early 13th centuries. The 11 churches, important in Ethiopian Christian tradition, were built during the reign of the Emperor Lalībela.
The churches are arranged in two main groups, connected by subterranean passageways. Notable among the 11 churches are House of Medhane Alem (“Saviour of the World”), the largest church; House of Golgotha, which contains Lalībela’s tomb; and House of Mariam, which is noted for its frescoes. Centuries after they were built, the churches still draw thousands of pilgrims around important holy days.
4. Great Zimbabwe
During the 11th to 15th century, Great Zimbabwe was the heart of a thriving trading empire that was based on cattle husbandry, agriculture, and the gold trade on the Indian Ocean coast.
The extensive stone ruins of this African Iron Age city are located in the southeastern portion of the modern-day country of Zimbabwe.
It is thought that the central ruins and surrounding valley supported a Shona population of 10,000 to 20,000 people. The site is known for its stonework and other evidence of an advanced culture.
Because of that, it was incorrectly attributed to various ancient civilizations such as the Phoenicians, the Greeks, or the Egyptians.
Those claims were refuted when the English archaeologist and anthropologist David Randall-MacIver concluded in 1905 that the ruins were medieval and of exclusively African origin.
His conclusions were later confirmed by another English archaeologist, Gertrude Caton-Thompson, in 1929.