Gabon | Place to visit in 2020

Our world is filled with indescribable beauty and places to go, both human-made and natural. And the Gabona is one of them.


Gabon is a country on the west coast of Central Africa. Located on the equator, Gabon is bordered by Equatorial Guinea to the northwest, Cameroon to the north, the Republic of the Congo on the east and south, and the Gulf of Guinea to the west. It has an area of nearly 270,000 square kilometres and its population is estimated at 2.1 million people.

Country Gabon is noted for efforts to preserve the natural environment. In 2002, President Omar Bongo Ondimba designated roughly 10% of the nation's territory to be part of its national park system (with 13 parks in total), one of the largest proportions of nature parkland in the world.


Abundant petroleum and foreign private investment have helped make Gabon one of the most prosperous countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, with the 7th highest HDI (The Human Development Index is a statistic composite index of life expectancy, education, and per capita income indicators, which are used to rank countries into four tiers of human development) and the fourth highest GDP (The Gross Domestic Product measures the value of economic activity within a country) per capita. However, because of inequality in income distribution, a significant proportion of the population remains poor.


Gabon is located on the Atlantic coast of central Africa on the equator. Gabon generally has an equatorial climate with an extensive system of rainforests covering 84.5% of the country.


Gabon has the moist, hot climate typical of tropical regions. The hottest month is January, with an average high at Libreville (country capital) of 31° C (88° F ) and an average low of 23° C (73° F ). Average July temperatures in the capital range between 20° and 28° C (68° and 82° F ). During the remaining months, rainfall is heavy.

Some have called it ‘the last Eden on Earth,’ and once you've visited, you're likely to agree. Let's explore what you can find here:


LIBREVILLE

Founded in the mid 19th century by freed slaves (Libreville means ‘Freetown’ French), the city grew slowly and attracted a wide variety of people – creating a modern day eclectic town.


Roughly one third of Gabon’s inhabitants live in Libreville. It stands as the country’s capital and only real city to speak of. Because of an influx of oil money, you’ll find paved roads, clean streets, unbelievable restaurants, surprisingly good French wine, casinos, and gated communities.


Libreville’s has a vibrant African heartbeat complete with the overcrowded, chaotic, and oh-so-fun markets, close knit communities, and gorgeous coastline. Also, don’t forget to visit the National Museum, the Presidential Palace, L’Eglise St-Michel (St Michael Cathedral), and the Musée des Arts et Traditions du Gabon.

LOPE NATIONAL PARK

One of the most accessible of Gabon's national parks, Lope National Park offers rainforest and savannah teeming with apes, elephants and birds. There are more elephants here than anywhere else in Africa. During your visit of 5 days, 7 days or 14 days, you will be doing Bouviac, gorilla forest tracking, Mont Brazza Visit and others activities.

POINTE-DENIS BEACH

This is a lovely beach in your reach when you visit Libreville, Gabon. Take a short boat trip the capital city, and you’ll find yourself in a white-sand beach and a very relaxing atmosphere. The trees with blue sea and yellow sand, a therapeutic view.

MOUKALABA-DOUDOU NATIONAL PARK

Gabon’s third largest national park, the 503,000ha Moukalaba-Doudou is a rugged area with a diverse range of habitats, from tropical rainforest and grassy savannahs to papyrus swamps. Running between the Moukalaba River to the east and the Ndogo Lagoon to the west, the park also covers the Doudou Mountains. This is the largest mountain range in southwestern Gabon, reaching an altitude of approximately 700m.


With an estimated population of almost 5,000 chimpanzees and gorillas, Moukalaba-Doudou has some of the highest densities of primates in Gabon, making it one of the country’s most promising gorilla-tourism sites. The best time of the year to see primates is during the dry season, between June and September. Former logging sites are now abundant with succulent marantaceae plants, a major food source for gorilla as well as forest elephant and other species. Furthermore, the savannahs near Doussala are the only place in Gabon where herds of common cobe (waterbuck) are found. The park is also a remarkable area for birders; more than 380 species (many of them unique) have been spotted here, including the vermiculated fishing owl, black-backed barbet, black-headed batis, fiery-breasted bush-shrike, brown twinspot and some rare swallows.

AKANDA NATIONAL PARK

Of vital importance to migrating birds, juvenile fish and nesting green turtles, Akanda National Park lies along the bays of Mondah and Corisco, an easy day trip from Libreville. It encompasses 540 sq km of mangroves and glorious beaches backed by forest. See orchids and other epiphytes, along with enormous trees and ancient plants.

LOPE NATIONAL PARK

Lopé National Park is a national park in central Gabon. Although the terrain is mostly rain forest, in the north the park contains the last remnants of grass savannas created in Central Africa during the last Ice Age, 15,000 years ago. It was the first protected area in Gabon when the Lopé-Okanda Wildlife Reserve was created in 1946. In 2007, the Lopé-Okanda landscape was added to the World Heritage List by UNESCO.


The park contains a small research station, named as Mikongo and run by the Zoological Society London, based in the village known as Mikongo, from which it gets its name. There exists infrastructure to cater for tourists at the base, including several chalets and a large open air dining room, from which the rainforest is a mere five meters away. The park also hosts CEDAMM Training Centre, a Wildlife Conservation Society-run international conservation education center.


IVINDO NATIONAL PARK

This 3000-sq-km national park provides the rare opportunity to view forest animals undisturbed in their own environment. The best location to do this is at Langoué Baï, a marshy clearing in the forest whose minerals act as a magnet for large numbers of forest elephants, western lowland gorillas, sitatungas, buffaloes, monkeys and rare bird species. There are also impressive waterfalls at Kongou and Mingouli.


PONGARA NATIONAL PARK

Perhaps the easiest place to get into the wild expanses of Gabon if you're only in the country for a few days, Pongara National Park combines forest, savannah and a sweeping expanse of empty beach that backs onto Pointe Denis.


Hippos and crocodiles inhabit the lagoons and beaches, while the mangroves hide a multitude of fish, crabs and frogs. Hundreds of leatherback turtles trundle up the beach to lay their eggs between November and March – this is one of the best places in the world to see them. Out at sea, dolphins and humpback whales visit in the dry season (July to October). In the savannah there are elephants, forest buffaloes, red river hogs and collared mangabeys.


FRANCEVILLE

The end of the Trans-Gabon Railway is Franceville, one of the four largest ‘cities’ in Gabon. At one point it was the governments chosen city to resettle former slaves and now is a bustling and lively place with a village atmosphere. Tourists enjoy St.Hilaire’s Church (19th century) and the memorial to former President Omar. The market makes for a fun stroll – be sure to check out the bushmeat, which includes African Rock Python! For nature lovers the Poubara Falls are nearby and make for an excellent nature walk.


POINT DENIS

Though it’s a quick boat ride from Libreville, it feels like another world. The beach runs for several kilometres and ends where the Pongara National Park begins. The laid back town has comfortable restaurants, small boutique hotels, and great water sports. On the western side of the island you’ll find only locals and a wilder coast line.

It’s a place where you’ll immediately know that you’re near equatorial jungle. Solitude and long introspective walk place with gorgeous scenery, Point Denis is beautiful place.


LAMBARENE

Lambaréné is a town roughly 75 kilometres from the equator in the Central African Rainforest. Made famous by Albert Schweitzer when he built his hospital there in 1913, the town is now home to the Bantu ethnic groups. Primarily a fishing town it’s a great place to relax and experience local life in Gabon. You can tour the hospital and see the remarkable work being done.


MINKEBE NATIONAL PARK

Travelling to Minkébé is a bit tricky, but well worth it. Home to gorillas, elephants, leopards, cheetahs, and isolated traditional ethnic groups, WWF focuses attention on alternative forms of income for the locals – including artistic endeavours.


The WWF reports that the elephant population here is probably the largest in all of Africa. Several species in the park are on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List. When you visit you’ll learn about the Kwèl and Kota ethnic groups that life within the park. Find out about the Baka Edzengui, the forest spirit, the Kota mask, and the Kwèl Deke dance.


ALSO,

you must wander:


Is Gabon safe for tourists?

Although Gabon is, by and large, a safe country in which few travelers experience any problems, it doesn't hurt to remain cautious and be prepared for potential dangers. Contrary to what you might expect, tropical disease, most notably malaria, poses the biggest safety threat, at any time of year.


What do Gabon people eat?

Traditional plates come with yams or cassava, rice, or manioc paste, paired with either meat or fish. Spicy sauces are also commonplace, as is cassava-flour (gari) porridge. French cooking is popular in the cities, as are local favorites like nyembwe, chicken seasoned with pine nuts, meat, fufu stews, and stuffed crab.


Do I need a visa for Gabon?

A passport with more than six months of validity remaining, a visa, and proof of vaccination against yellow fever are required for entry into Gabon. ... There are a number of ways a visitor can obtain a visa to visit Gabon.


Is Gabon a poor country?

Despite being rich in oil, the coastal African nation of Gabon continues to grapple with widespread poverty. ... Though Gabon's per capita income is quadruple that of most African countries, a strong inequality of income means more than 500,000 of the 1.7 million people living in Gabon are below the poverty line


What is official language in Gabon?

French


What currency is used in Gabon?

Central African CFA franc (XAF)


Gabon is a true adventure just waiting to steal your heart and make you fall in love.


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