Gabon is a country with untouched tropical nature, where ancient traditions and modernity coexist. People come here to see the picturesque natural parks “Crystal Mountains” and Mayumba, ride a jeep in the Lope park, canoe on the Ivindo River. The mosque of Hassan II will impress with its beauty, and the Catholic Church of Saint-Michel will impress with its originality of construction.
Who and why should come to Gabon
Connoisseurs of ethnic culture will love visiting the Museum of Art and Traditions in Libreville. Here you can see with your own eyes masks, ivory products and carved wooden sculptures by local craftsmen.
Architecture lovers will be interested to take a look at the Presidential Palace, built on an unusual scale, the Saint-Michel church with mahogany columns and the Hassan II mosque with a 40-meter minaret.
Those who want to see the untouched tropical nature will enjoy a trip to the national parks of Gabon. Ivindo Park is famous for its fauna, as well as waterfalls on the river of the same name. Mayumba, Loango and Lope parks have preserved the original flora of savannas and mangrove forests, many species of rare and endangered animals and birds.
Nightlife lovers will not be bored either — the Cape Lopez area will be of interest to clubs, bars and casinos.
Museum of Art and Traditions
The institution is located in Libreville, the capital of the country. The museum has several expositions that reflect the national culture of Gabon. Here you can see a variety of ritual masks of the Mitsogo, Teke and Fang peoples.
Demonstrated within its walls are products made of wood and ivory. The halls also feature mats, fabrics from the leaves of the local raffia plant, handmade jewelry, and carved wooden sculptures.
The palace in Libreville was built in the 70s of the XX century by the President of Gabon, Omar Bongo. The cost of construction turned out to be a record high — $ 800 million, and the size of the complex is so large that it can be seen from all areas of the capital.
Externally, the palace does not impress with special architectural delights or luxury, and entry for tourists is strictly prohibited. It is also impossible to photograph it — it is surrounded by a guard around the perimeter.
Hassan II Mosque
The temple is located in the capital of the country, not far from the Presidential Palace. The mosque was built in 1983 and is designed for 5,000 people. The main part of it is made in white and yellow colors, and more than 40-meter minaret — in dark green and golden hues. The interior of the mosque is decorated with colorful mosaics and ornaments in the Moroccan style.
This is a Catholic church in the capital of the country, which surprises with its special architecture. The main material during construction was wood of various species, and the roof of the building rests on 31 mahogany columns.
They are carved with illustrations of scenes from the Bible. Another feature of this temple is the choir, which during services uses national musical instruments, which gives a special sound to prayers.
Park “Crystal Mountains”
The mountain range is also called the Chaillou Mountains after the French traveler. “Crystal” they were called for the purity of the waterfalls formed by mountain rivers. The peculiarity of the park is in a large number of trees of rare species growing here: red, black, osigo, okoyume.
Wild orchids and begonias grow among the trees. Due to the abundance of vines, forests in some places turn into the jungle, where elephants, antelopes, zebras, lions and gorillas live. There are also hippos and crocodiles.
The park with an area of 3000 sq. km is located on both sides of the equator. The river of the same name flows through its territory. The steep rapids of the river form the Kongu, Jiji and Minguli waterfalls.
The Langue Bai area is home to a large population of elephants, for observation of which there is an observation deck. A large number of gorillas, chimpanzees, buffaloes, river pigs, sitatunga antelope, as well as hundreds of species of birds live here.
The territory of this small park occupies mainly coastal waters, since mainly ocean animals have become protected here. Here you can see flocks of dolphins, sharks, humpback whales and leatherback turtles.
The latter come ashore to lay their eggs — you can see this only at night. On land, the territory of the park is inhabited by elephants and antelopes, there are also buffaloes, leopards, gorillas and chimpanzees.
This protected area is located in the west of the country and is called “the last Eden”. On its territory, savannas and mangrove forests, swamps, beaches and lagoons coexist. Being on the coast of the ocean, you can see dolphins and humpback whales.
Olive and leatherback turtles lay their eggs on the shores at night. Herds of buffaloes and zebras pass through the wooded part, chimpanzees and gorillas live here. But a special flavor of the park is given by several settlements of indigenous people — pygmies.
The nature protection zone was established in 1946. Areas of moist equatorial forests and the savannah area remained intact here. People come here to look at the local fauna — forest elephants and gorillas. In addition to exploring the forests, visitors are offered a jeep safari through the savannah and boat rafting on the Ogowa River, which is full of rapids.
A headland on the west coast of the country near the town of Port-Gentil is famous for its old red and black lighthouse. The city itself became the capital of the oil business in Gabon. But they also come here for entertainment — this is an expensive resort area for lovers of nightlife.
Many hotels are concentrated on the cape, as well as casinos, clubs and bars. Rich Gabonese, European employees of local companies and wealthy tourists rest on Lopez.