In Libreville, almost one-third of Gabon’s population resides. It serves as the sole actual city and capital of the nation.
You’ll discover paved roads, spotless streets, wonderful restaurants, shockingly decent French wine, casinos, and gated communities thanks to an inflow of oil money.
Not precisely like the neighbouring countries’ Africa.
But Libreville’s core is firmly rooted in Africa, replete with its crammed, chaotic, and oh-so-fun marketplaces, tight-knit neighbourhoods, and stunning coastline.
Liberville, which means “Freetown” in French, was established in the middle of the 19th century by emancipated slaves. The city expanded slowly and drew a diverse range of residents, resulting in the varied community it is today.
Don’t miss the National Museum, the Presidential Palace, L’Eglise St-Michel (St. Michael Cathedral), and the marketplaces in addition to the markets.
Museum of Gabonese Arts and TraditionsFind a little stretch of beach, like Ekwata Island, and rest there when you’re ready.
2. Loango National Park:
Loango is without a doubt the gem in the 13 national park system.
You’re about to have one of the finest safari adventures in all of Africa.The park features amazing fauna and a lovely terrain.Loango is among the few really wild coastal locations with about 200 kilometres of undeveloped beThe park has marshes, savannahs, lagoons, and forests.
You’ll witness gorillas, elephants strolling down the beach, whales, dolphins, buffalo, and more in addition to the well-known surfing hippos photographed by a National Geographic team in 2004.These creatures can reach the sea in one of the few remaining locations on Earth.Sport fisherman have caught and released fish in the area, and they’ve even been known to hook sharks, barracudas, and rouge.
The nearly 900 square kilometre Pongara National Park was chosen because to its varied topography. Beach, savannah, mangrove flats, and forest.
Numerous bird species live there, including the endangered Damara terns, yet it’s relatively accessible (for Gabon!).
Monkeys, duiker, buffalo, elephants, and chimpanzees may all be found in the woodlands.
Leatherback turtles, which are in risk of extinction, call Pongara Point, a section of the park’s shoreline, home.
They come here to deposit their eggs by creeping up on the coast.You may attend one of the numerous instructional programmes put on by Adventures Without Borders, a nonprofit whose mission is to save turtles and lessen the threat posed by people, if you come between November and February.
Don’t forgetthe second burial location of Chief Rapontchombo and discover the secrets surrounding the first!
4. Fernan Vaz Lagoon:
The Fernan Vaz Lagoon is the focal point of the Ogooué marine area.
The region, which has the name of the Portuguese explorer who discovered it in the 15th century, is the focus of several conservation initiatives.
The Fernan-Vaz Gorilla Project (PGFA) maintains a refuge and reintroduction facility on Gorilla Island.
Two gorillas are currently residing there and aid in educating tourists about the situation of these lovely animals.
There are also eight other orphaned gorillas that are kept separate from humans with the intention of returning them to the wild.
5. Ivindo National Park:
Ivindo is maybe the most isolated national park in all of Central Africa, but it’s also one of the most crucial for efforts to conserve wildlife.
The major feature of the region is the river, which flows through the rain forest and forges an incredible array of waterfalls and rapids.
There are adventure packages that let you stay in the jungle and close to the falls, take a pirogue instruction, and go on a day trip down the river.
The 430+ bird species, which include African grey parrots, will appeal to bird watchers.
In this 3000 km2 park, you may see gorillas, chimpanzees, colobus monkeys, mandrill monkeys, sitatunga monkeys, duiker monkeys, gigantic pangolins, bush pigs, and more.
Remember to look at Langoué Bai.
Baiis the Pygmy name meaning a clearing in the forest, and this stunning area of land is full with mineral water.
By excavating to the rich, salty soil, the elephants maintain the area’s cleanliness and draw other big creatures to graze there.
6. Makokou & Kongou Falls:
The entryway to Gabon’s equivalent of Niagara Falls, the Kongou waterfalls, is located in Makokou, the region’s capital of Ogooué-Ivindo.
With a 60-meter plunge and significant spiritual importance to the locals, Kongou, which is located inside Ivindo National Park, is unquestionably a must-see.
Despite its relative isolation, the community of Makokou has access to the air, train, and water.
By using the hamlet as your base camp, you’ll have several opportunity to engage with the Pygmies that reside in the nearby forest.
One of Gabon’s four main “cities,” Franceville serves as the Trans-Gabon Railway’s terminus.
It was formerly the government’s selected city for the resettlement of freed slaves, and now it is a bustling, vivacious location with a village-like vibe.
Visitors adore St.
Hilaire’s Church, built in the nineteenth century, and the Omar Memorial.
Take a tour through the market and look at the bushmeat, which includes African Rock Python! The Poubara Falls are close by and make for a fantastic nature hike for anyone who love the outdoors.
Port-Gentil is the second-largest city after Libreville (or Mandji as some of the locals call it). The centre of the nation’s wood and petroleum interests is this coastal city.
And it’s simple to understand how the town has developed into its current commercial prominence given its history as a customs station and a base camp for colonial excursions into the nation.
It is situated on Mandji Island and has no road access to the mainland.
Port-Gentil is well-known not just for its industries but also for its nightlife and casino.
Make sure to visit the neighbourhood zoo and St.
9. Point Denis:
Because tourism growth hasn’t yet reached Point Denis, it is popular.
Despite being only a short boat journey from Libreville, it seems like a another planet.
The beach extends for several kilometres until coming to an end at the entrance of Pongara National Park.
The relaxed town offers amazing water activities, cosy eateries, and little boutique hotels.
Only inhabitants and a wilder shore line may be found on the western side of the island.
You can tell right away that you are close to a tropical jungle at this location.
Point Denis is the place to go if you’re searching for seclusion and lengthy, reflective hikes with stunning surroundings.
10. Réserve de la Lopé:
Réserve de la Lopé, which is right on the equator and has a savannah, rolling hills, and rainforest where you may observe buffalo, elephants, gorillas, and mandrills, is located.
After the Okanda Wildlife Reserve was founded in the 1940s, this national park was first constituted as a reserve.
It is currently listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
There is a research facility managed by the London Zoological Society.
If you want to remain at the station, you will never be more than five metres from the jungle.
Lastoursville, sometimes referred to as Lozo by the locals, is a tranquil small hamlet on the Ogooué River’s banks.
The town itself is hardly noteworthy; instead, the surrounding area is where all the attractions are.
First up are peaceful and lovely nature walks to Boundji Waterfalls.
The caverns in Lastoursville, which are only a one-hour walk from the town centre, are without a doubt the main draw.
In 2005, they received the UNESCO World Heritage designation. Over three kilometres of subterranean cave have been mapped by recent trips.
A settlement called Lambaréné is located in the Central African Rainforest around 75 kilometres from the equator.
The town, where Albert Schweitzer established his hospital in 1913, is currently inhabited by the Bantu ethnic groups.
It’s a terrific spot to unwind and get a taste of local life in Gabon because it’s mostly a fishing village.
You may take a tour of the hospital to witness the amazing work being done there.
13. Minkébé National Park:
It might be challenging to get to Minkébé, but the effort is definitely worth it.
The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) is working in the region to support conservation efforts in another another of the most difficult-to-reach parks.
WWF concentrates attention on alternate sources of income for the residents, including creative endeavours. This region is home to gorillas, elephants, leopards, cheetahs, and isolated traditional ethnic communities.
According to the WWF, this region likely has the biggest number of elephants in all of Africa.
The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List includes a number of species in the park.
You may find out more about the Kota and Kwèl ethnic communities when you visit the park.
Learn about the Kota mask, the Baka Edzengui, the forest spirit, and the Kwèl Deke dance.
14. Mayumba National Park:
This park is the only one that is predominantly a marine park, and it is located near to the Republic of Congo’s border.
It is a narrow strip of land that is home to a rainforest, beach, dunes, and savanna.
A leatherback turtle nesting beach is protected along around 60 kilometres of this stretch.
Barnacled whales, dolphins, sea turtles, leopards, antelopes, crocodiles, hippos, monkeys, and of course, elephants are all quite likely to be seen.
The place is guarded by the ghosts of the ancestors, according to the locals.
15. Akanda National Park:
Akanda National Park makes up nearly 25% of the protected mangrove in all of Africa and is well-known worldwide as the breeding location for one of the greatest numbers of migratory birds on Earth.
The Mondah forest, which is located within the park, is revered by the Bantu tribe as the source of many of their stories and traditions.
Additionally, this is the best location for fishing, sea activities, and whale and dolphin sightings.
Check out Leatherback Trove, where the Ministry of Water and Forest collaborates with the Gabon Sea Turtle Partnership to educate teams to document unlawful fishing near to the shore in order to safeguard leatherbacks, the number of which has fallen by 90%.