Popular Attractions in West Africa

Elmina©Adam Jones, Ph.D./Flickr

The West of Africa might not be the first option for those anxious to dig into the amazing nature and the still undiscovered mysteries of this large and fascinating continent. However, there are as many interesting attractions to visit in West Africa as there are in other parts of the continent. Diamonds, lush forests, unusual architectural creations and virgin surfer beaches represent just a small part of West Africa’s often underestimated touristic potential. Today’s post is an invitation to explore the most popular attractions in West Africa:

Elmina, Ghana

Landing in a relatively familiar setting might be the best way to start your exploration of the West African coast. With its European style buildings and colourful little harbour, the town of Elmina in Ghana will remind you of a fisher’s village at the Mediterranean. But the history of the place is quite disturbing: built by the Portuguese colonists, the two most prominent old buildings in Elmina, St George’s Castle and Fort St Jago, have served for many years in the slave trade.

Loango National Park, Gabon

Gabon nature©Axel Rouvin/Flickr

This park in Gabon might not be as famous as Kruger, Chobe or Serengeti, but the truth is that none of these famous African parks can compete with Loango when it comes to the diversity of its habitats. Loango is probably the only park in the world where visitors have the chance to see a humpback whale, a leopard and a gorilla within just a few hours. The diversity of landscapes it’s also overwhelming: beaches, jungles, mangroves and grass lands all al part of Loango’s complex ecosystem.

Bandiagara, Mali

The ridge of a sandstone plateau in Mali is home to one of the most fascinating and popular attractions in West Africa: entire kilometres of villages carved in stone. The Dogon people who inhabit this part of Mali today are just as interesting as their villages: unrivalled blacksmiths and woodworkers, they are famous for their mask dances, as well as their ingenious crops.

Comoe National Park, Cote d’Ivoire

Ebrie Lagoon Cote D'Ivoire© eutrophication&hypoxia/Flickr

Those looking for some thrills and chills should probably include this World Heritage Site in their itinerary. A natural attraction in the north eastern part of Cote d’Ivoire, Comoe encompass the rich rainforests that flourish around River Comoe. The humid climate is particularly favourable for crocodiles: this is also the reason why some of Africa’s rarest and highly endangered crocodile species can only be found here in Comoe.

 

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