Niger is a landlocked West African state that is bordered by Chad, Algeria, Libya, Mali, Burkina Faso, Benin, Nigeria and Cameroon. The country measures 1,267,000 square kilometres almost twice the size of Texas, and its capital is Niamey. The population of Niger is approximately 16 million.
Niger: Climate and Landscape
Niger’s climate is mainly desert as four fifths of the country lies in the desert. Much of the country is hot, dry and dusty. However, in the extreme south there are regions with tropical climate.
Places to Visit in Niger
For motor sport enthusiasts, the Paris Dakar rally is great time to visit Niger as the country lies on the route of this gruelling trail. In addition to the rally, other places worth visiting include the Air and Tenere Reserves, Agadez Mosque and the Abaaba national park. Some of the animals that live in Niger include fennec foxes, sand cats, antelopes, gazelles and giraffe.
Niger: People and Language
The official language of Niger is French. In addition to that Hausa and Djerma are also widely spoken. The major ethnic groups in the Niger include Haoussa (55.4%), Djerma Sonrai, Tuareg, Peuhl, Kanouri Manga and others.
Other Facts from Niger
Historically, Niger lay at the crossroads of trading empires prior to becoming a colony of France. Niger is among the hottest countries n the world. The country is the location of one of the world’s largest protected reserves, Air and Tenere natural reserves. The remains of a dinosaur, long necked and hammerhead skull the Nigersaurus, were discovered in the country. Slavery was declared illegal in Niger in 2004. Niger mainly exports uranium ore, livestock, cowpeas and onions. Though the country is largely desert, 115 of the land is arable.