Gabon is a West African nation that sits along the equator, slightly smaller than Colorado. The country’s neighbours include Cameroon, Equatorial Guinea and Congo. The capital city is Libreville and the country’s population is estimated to be 2 million. The country has many natural resources that have contributed to its high per capita income.
Gabonese Climate and Landscape
Due to its location on the equator, Gabon’s climate is mostly hot and humid all year round. Gabon is between 80-85% rainforest with 11% of this existing within game reserves. Much of Gabon is hilly.
Sights and Sounds of Gabon
Due to the natural resources, Gabon has successfully managed to maintain its lush rainforest. Gabon is currently a popular tourism destination for eco tourists. The best site in Gabon for eco tourists is the Ivindo National park located in the Eastern part off Gabon. The rainforests of Gabon are home to over 750 species of birds making it a paradise for bird lovers. The equatorial rainforest is also home to 80% of Africa’s gorilla population. Gabon’s rainforest is an eden for wildlife and supports several monkey species, chimpanzees, mandrills and elephants. Along its coast, tourists can see humpback whales, manatees and leather back turtles.
Gabon: people and Languages
The official languages of Gabon are French and Fang. In addition to these Gabonese, also speak Myene, Nzebi, Bapounou and Bandjabi. The vast majority of its inhabitants are Christian.
Other Facts from Gabon
Gabon earns foreign exchange mainly through trade in oil, timber and manganese. However, poor management see much of the oil wealth received by a very small number of people. Many Gabonese survive by subsistence farming. The capital Libreville (Free town) got its name when the French freed slaves here in 1849. The original inhabitants of Gabon were pygmy’s, though through migration many other Bantu tribes settled in the country. The country’s former president was the longest serving president ever. Gabon is heavily reliant on its oil revenues that currently contribute over 40% to the annual budget. Hump back whales and leather back turtles are known to especially favour breeding along the Gabonese coastline. Gabon has some of Africa’s most magnificent waterfalls in the Ivindo national park.