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Saloum Delta National Park

Saloum Delta, Senegal

Saloum Delta National Park Delta Gold National Park Saloum in Senegal, is a 76,000-hectare (190,000-acre) national park. Established in 1976, it is located in the Saloum Delta at the junction of the Saloum River and the North Atlantic.

You can find various species of birds, savanna, and mangrove forests. One of the interesting facts is that this park is listed in UNESCO World Heritage Site. You can experience a pleasant experience by using a traditional African boat or pirogue.

This region represents an important synergy between nature with extensive biodiversity and the way of human development, which is still present, albeit fragile. Sustainable shellfish farming is highly developed here and is a very important source of food and export revenue for the local community and Senegal in general. The Delta is a vast saline wetland that fans across a full 1,800 sq km (695 sq miles) of the Senegalese coastal belt, making it about one-fifth as large as Gambia, which forms its southern border. Roughly 720 sq km (270 sq miles) of the delta is open water, while permanent islands account for another 850 sq km (330 sq miles), with the remainder of the area consisting of tidal or seasonal flats.

Fishing and shellfish gathering have sustained human life in the 5,000 km2 property, which is formed by the arms of three rivers. The site comprises brackish channels encompassing over 200 islands and islets, mangrove forest, an Atlantic marine environment, and dry forest.

The site is marked by 218 shellfish mounds, some of them several hundreds metres long, produced by its human inhabitants over the ages. Burial sites on 28 of the mounds take the form of tumuli where remarkable artefacts have been found.

This lush national park is a water-filled wonderland with mangroves, salt marshes, islands and woodland all part of the great delta's backdrop. Birds are abundant in this reserve, harboring species like the dwarf flamingo, goliath heron and dimorph egret. There are also some 36 mammal species, including warthogs, spotted hyenas and red colobus monkeys.

The best way to experience the park is to get out on the water, which can be arranged through guided services offered by guesthouses in Palmarin and Toubakouta.

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