Top Ten Senegalese Attractions

Top Ten Senegalese Attractions

       Senegal is a country south of the Sénégal River in western Africa. It owes its name to the river that borders it to the east and north. Senegal is externally bounded by the Atlantic Ocean, Mauritania, Mali, Guinea and Guinea-Bissau; internally it almost completely surrounds The Gambia. Senegal covers a land area of almost 197,000 square km (76,000 sq mi), and has an estimated population of about 14 million. The climate is tropical with two seasons: the dry season and the rainy season. Dakar, the capital city of Senegal, is located at the westernmost tip of the country on the Cap-Vert peninsula. About 500 km (300 mi) off the coast, in the Atlantic Ocean, lie the Cape Verde Islands. During the 17th and 18th centuries, numerous trading posts, belonging to various colonial empires, were established along the coast. The town of St. Louis became the capital of French West Africa before it was moved to Dakar in 1902.Dakar later became its capital in 1960 at the time of independence from France.

  1. The Djoudj National Bird Sanctuary

           The Djoudj National Bird Sanctuary lies on the southeast bank of the River Senegal in Senegal, in northern Biffeche, north east of St-Louis. It provides a range of wetland habitats which prove very popular with migrating birds, many of which have just crossed the Sahara. Of almost 400 species of birds, the most visible are pelicans and flamingos. Less conspicuous are the Aquatic Warblers migrating here from Europe; for these, the park is the single most important wintering site yet discovered.
    Links: Top 100 Birds, Top Ten Bird Sanctuaries,,
  2. Île de Gorée

           Île de Gorée is one of the 19 communes d’arrondissement of the city of Dakar, Senegal. It is a 0.182 square km (45 acres) island located 2 km (1.2 mi) at sea from the main harbor of Dakar. Gorée is both the smallest and the least populated of the 19 communes d’arrondissement of Dakar, with an estimated 1,056 inhabitants (2005). Gorée is famous as a destination for people interested in the Atlantic slave trade but relatively few slaves were processed or transported from there. The more important centers for the slave trade from Senegal were north, at Saint-Louis, Senegal or to the south in the Gambia, at the mouths of major rivers for trade.
    Links: Top Ten Islands, Top Ten Slaves,,
  3. Ndar (Saint-Louis)

           Saint-Louis, or Ndar as it is called in Wolof, is the capital of Senegal’s Saint-Louis Region. Located in the northwest of Senegal, near the mouth of the Senegal River, and 320 km north of Senegal’s capital city Dakar, it has a population officially estimated at 176,000 (2005). Saint-Louis was the capital of the French colony of Senegal from 1673 until independence in 1960. From 1920 to 1957 it also served as the capital of the neighboring colony of Mauritania.
    Links: Top Ten Bridges,,_Senegal,
  4. Niokolo-Koba National Park

           The Niokolo-Koba National Park is a World Heritage Site and natural protected area in south eastern Senegal near the Guinea-Bissau border.
    Links: National Parks, Top Ten African National Parks,,
  5. Saloum Delta National Park

           Saloum Delta National Park or Parc National du Delta du Saloum in Senegal is a 76,000 hectare national park in Senegal. Established in 1976, it is situated within the delta of the Sine and Saloum rivers. The park, which is also a Ramsar Convention site, lies within a 180,000-hectare biosphere reserve. Waters comprise 61,000 hectares of the park, intertidal mangroves and saltwater vegetation cover 7,000 hectares and savanna and forest cover 8,000 hectares. It lies on the East Atlantic Flyway. The bird species that breed or winter in the area include Royal Tern, Greater Flamingo, Eurasian Spoonbill, Curlew Sandpiper, Ruddy Turnstone and Little Stint.
    Links: National Parks, Top Ten African National Parks, Top 100 Birds,,
  6. Senegambian Stone Circles

           The Senegambian stone circles lie in Gambia north of Janjanbureh and in central Senegal. They are sometimes divided into the Wassu (Gambian) and Sine-Saloum (Senegalese) circles, but this is purely a national division. The stones were erected around the 8th century on top of earlier graves. The 10-24 stones in each circle vary in size up to ten-ton stones, from 1 to 2.5 meters high and are generally of laterite. The stones mark burials and were erected before the 12th century. There are around 1,000 stone circles, the biggest concentration being more than 1,000 stones in 52 circles at Djalloumbéré and those around the village of Wassu, which has a museum devoted to them. One notable circle is actually a V formation. Traditionally, for unknown reasons, people leave small rocks on the stones. The use to which the stones were put is not clear but recent excavation work, reported by the National Geographic Society, suggests a funerary purpose given the large number of human remains found at the sites. Archaeologists at the site are pursuing the theory that different parts of a body were buried at different sites and at different times.
  7. Dakar

           Dakar is the capital city and largest city of Senegal. It is located on the Cap-Vert Peninsula on the Atlantic coast and is the westernmost city on the African mainland. Its position, on the western edge of Africa, is an advantageous departure point for trans-Atlantic and European trade; this fact aided its growth into a major regional port. According to December 31, 2005 official estimates, the city of Dakar proper has a population of 1,030,594, whereas the population of the Dakar metropolitan area is estimated at 2.45 million people. Dakar is a major administrative center, home to the National Assembly of Senegal and Senegal’s President’s Palace.
    Links: Sculptures,,
  8. Touba

           Touba is a city in central Senegal. It is the holy city of Mouridism and the burial place of its founder, Shaikh Aamadu Bàmba Mbàkke. Next to his tomb lies a large mosque, completed in 1963.
    Links: Top Ten Spiritual Destinations on Earth, Top Ten Mosques, Top Ten Tombs,,_Senegal,
  9. Links: Attractions, African Attractions,,