11 Best Things to Do in Mauritania


Mau­ri­ta­nia hides among the sand dunes of the majes­tic Sahara desert. Here live Berbers, Arabs and Negroid tribes who have cre­at­ed a unique cul­ture. Many cities in Mau­ri­ta­nia are includ­ed in the UNESCO World Her­itage List.


Who and why should come to Mauritania

Mau­ri­ta­nia attracts lovers of African cul­ture, researchers of the life of nomadic tribes and their tra­di­tions. The archi­tec­ture and his­to­ry of the coun­try is pro­tect­ed by the UNESCO Foun­da­tion. There is some­thing to see here for fans of ancient build­ings and unique cities.

The wide dunes of the Sahara and the African savan­nah attract active trav­el­ers. Wildlife lovers will be inter­est­ed in oases, bird colonies, wild desert plateaus, as well as a vari­ety of ani­mals in local nation­al parks.

The city of Nouak­chott, with its fish mar­kets and vibrant trad­ing life, is sure to attract gourmets and lovers of exot­ic cui­sine.

National parks and reserves

Dialing National Park

nac park dialing

A small green island on the south­ern out­skirts of Mau­ri­ta­nia is one of the most pop­u­lar places for birds. Pel­i­cans, Sudanese gold­en spar­rows and pink flamin­gos live here. In addi­tion to the feath­ered inhab­i­tants, the park is famous for its aca­cia forests and lakes, where croc­o­diles coex­ist with ducks and hip­pos.

Banc d’Arguin

nac park bank d argen

Banque d’Ar­guin is the only major nation­al park in Mau­ri­ta­nia. Its nat­ur­al land­scape resem­bles a patch­work quilt: low sand­banks inter­spersed with rocky beach­es of Arguin Bay.

A pop­u­la­tion of migra­to­ry birds set­tled on the coast: waders and flamin­gos, pel­i­cans and terns. The park is inhab­it­ed by peo­ple of the Imra­ge­na tribe, who often scur­ry through the waves on pirogues between sandy islands in search of fish and oth­er ocean crea­tures.

Cities and UNESCO sites



Chinguet­ti is lit­er­al­ly swal­lowed up by the insa­tiable Sahara desert. The sands have been invad­ing human set­tle­ments for decades and have already tak­en over the res­i­den­tial out­skirts. The city, with eeri­ly emp­ty streets, was once an impor­tant trad­ing hub between the north and south of the coun­try.

Tourists from all over the world flock to this ancient Berber set­tle­ment to admire the brick tow­ers and fortress­es of the Almoravids. Chinguet­ti is one of the major UNESCO World Her­itage Sites along with oth­er cities in the Adrar region.



The city was built for 15 thou­sand peo­ple, and today more than two mil­lion live here. Nouak­chott is an amaz­ing­ly cute place. Com­pared to the car­a­van set­tle­ments of the Berbers of the Great Sahara, the cap­i­tal of Mau­ri­ta­nia has a more devel­oped infra­struc­ture and more enter­tain­ment.

You can expe­ri­ence the rhythm of life in Nouak­chott for your­self by vis­it­ing the tra­di­tion­al mar­ket or the Bar­rios dis­tricts. Each is brought here with fish and seafood from the Atlantic Ocean.



Atar is the gate­way to the Adrar plateau, dot­ted with medieval World Her­itage list­ed car­a­van towns. The area is locat­ed near the very heart of the coun­try — at the very bor­der with West­ern Sahara. The city has an Earth Bazaar and craft mar­kets where you can buy sou­venirs and tra­di­tion­al Moor­ish trin­kets.



Among the sand dunes, the oasis of the city of Ter­jit looks like a fab­u­lous mirage, paint­ed with broad strokes of the artist. The city is filled with date palms, flow­ers of unprece­dent­ed beau­ty and mur­mur­ing streams. A speck of trop­i­cal green­ery, sur­round­ed by a sea of ​​sand, is pro­tect­ed by low cliffs, smooth­ly turn­ing into the Adrar plateau.



The city of Ouadan is an inter­est­ing place that reveals the harsh real­i­ties of life in the arid region of Mau­ri­ta­nia. Most res­i­dents fled their homes due to abnor­mal­ly high tem­per­a­tures. The long streets of adobe build­ings of the Bar­rios peo­ple crum­ble and crack under the scorch­ing desert sun.

But Wadan can still show the way of life and cus­toms of the peo­ple who left him before the desert swal­lowed him up. In the cen­ter of the wind­ing lanes, you can meet lone­ly Berber nomads and buy tra­di­tion­al-style sou­venirs from them.



Tishitt is a city in the mid­dle of the Sahara, pro­tect­ed by UNESCO. Above the city ris­es like a tow­er of a mosque float­ing in the clouds, crowned with bat­tle­ments and strewn with tri­an­gu­lar win­dows. The city is famous for its ancient dis­tricts and build­ings with col­ored stones.



One of Mau­ri­ta­ni­a’s most charm­ing desert attrac­tions and the most famous UNESCO World Her­itage Site in the Sahara.

Antique sand­stone fron­tispieces are adorned with ele­gant Berber and Moor­ish designs, while earthy arabesques mim­ic the ele­gance of Moroc­co’s grand kas­bahs in Fes and Mar­rakesh. Tourists stroll through the ruined old city and admire the tow­ers of the Wala­ta Mosque.



The city of Nouad­hi­bou is locat­ed on the Cabo Blan­ca penin­su­la, extend­ing into the Atlantic Ocean. It is the cen­ter of the Mau­ri­tan­ian fish­ing indus­try. The end­less docks that line the city along the south­ern bor­der are adorned with thou­sands of sail­boats and boats.

Every day, fish­er­men go for seafood, trans­port­ing their catch to oth­er cities and neigh­bor­ing coun­tries. Tourists inspect rust­ing lin­ers in Nouad­hi­bou Bay and enjoy the sun­set in Cança­do.



An inter­est­ing cross­roads city, locat­ed in the shad­ow of the Affol­je moun­tains, where the south­ern reach­es of the Sahara meet the lands of the African Sahel — the savan­nah region. Tourists come here to hike through the moun­tain towns and find the leg­endary Kif­fa beads, which were made by famous local arti­sans.

Accord­ing to leg­end, the beads were made from a top-secret mix­ture of pow­dered glass. Anoth­er attrac­tion of Kif­fa is the site of a large mete­orite that crashed into the moun­tains in 1970.


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