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Gabon is a natural paradise located on the West African coast. It can be defined by thick rainforests, open savannah, national parks and white-sand beaches. Since national parks cover more than 11% of Gabon’s total land area, this green country offers great ecotourism and wildlife watching opportunities.
Gabon’s capital Libreville is a clean city with decent infrastructure and dining options. Some of the city’s major highlights include the National Museum of Art and Tradition, Church of St. Michael Nkembo – a wooden church with vivid murals and Presidential Palace – an impressive building from the 1970s. From Libreville, you can visit the nearby Akanda National Park covered with mangrove forests which are ringed by white-sand beaches and home to various species of birds, fish, green turtles, trees and ancient plants.
Gabon’s second-largest city Port-Gentil, is the industrial and economic heart of the country. The city is known for its massive oil and gas industry and offers good nightlife, accommodation and beaches. Notable landmarks of the city include the Cape Lopez lighthouse and the St. Louis Church.
Gabon has 13 national parks and exploring them is an integral part of every trip to the country. You can start with the Loango National Park which comprises dense forests, savannah, wetlands and beaches. Loango is located on the bank of a lagoon called Iguela, popular for its legendary surfing hippos. Even if you don’t spot one, you are likely to see whales and dolphins, elephants, lowland gorillas, buffalo and leopards.
The UNESCO world heritage listed Lopé National Park in central Gabon, was the country’s first ever protected area and is bounded by the Ogooue River in the north. Here you will find the largest mandrill group in the world along with elephants, buffaloes, gorillas, chimpanzees and various bird species. Archaeologists have also found evidence of human activities from as early as the Stone Age, in this region.
Gabon is an ideal destination for nature enthusiasts and DIY adventurers. Here, you will be able to connect with nature without worrying about mass tourism. Be it the country’s national parks or white-sand beaches, you are likely to have them all for yourself.
Did you know national parks cover more than 11% of Gabon’s total land area?