In 2002, late President Omar Bongo Ondimba put Gabon firmly on the map as an important future ecotourism destination by nominating more than 11% of the nation’s territory as National Park – a new standard in African eco-tourism and conservation! As a percentage of a country’s total area, only Costa Rica has more national park, though the total size of its parks is much smaller than in Gabon.
Thirteen national parks in Gabon
In total, there are 13 national parks in Gabon. Not all the parks are accessible. Africa’s Eden offers tours in Loango National Park, described as the most beautiful and diverse national park of Gabon.
Loango National Park
Situated between the Nkomi and Ndogo Lagoons, Loango National Park is the true jewel of Africa’s western coast. The park’s 1,550 km of savannah, pristine beach, forest and mangroves are a must-see in Gabon. Loango National Park offers breathtaking panoramas and the unique opportunity to observe elephants, buffalos, hippos, gorillas and leopards venturing onto the white sand beaches.
Largest variety of whales and dolphins
After South Africa, the world’s largest concentration and variety of whales and dolphins can be found right off the Loango coast. The area has over 100 kilometres of uninhabited coastline and humpback and killer whales are easy to observe here (from mid-July to mid-September).
Renowned tarpon fishing
Loango is renowned worldwide as a site for tarpon of record size, as well as many other large saltwater fish.
In 2002, late President Omar Bongo Ondimba put Gabon firmly on the map as an important future ecotourism destination by nominating more than 11% of the nation’s territory as National Park – a new standard in African eco-tourism and conservation!
Gabon is home to western lowland gorillas and nearly 200 other mammal species and 600 species of birds. In Loango National Park, you can find elephants and buffalos roaming freely on its endless beaches.
Rainfall varies from an annual average of 120 inches in the capital Libreville to 150 inches on the northwest coast, with almost all of it falling between October and April. In the period from May to September there is little, if any, rainfall, but humidity remains high.
The earliest inhabitants of Gabon are the pygmy people. Pygmy tribes are known for their hunting & gathering culture in the central African rainforest, and for their height: adult members grow on average to less than 150 cm (4 feet 11 inches).