A Trip to Parc W (Niger)

May 2012





Parc W is one of the few places we are allowed to visit outside of Niamey. About 150km South of the capital of Niger, the park is located at the border with Burkina and Benin and takes its name from the twists of the River Niger.

A few of us drove there during the week-end and enjoyed a couple of days in the African wilderness. We did not see any elephants or lions (the highlights of the park), but had a great time nonetheless!

I enjoyed the ride to/from the park at least as much as the park itself... as you can see from the quantity of pictures taken in the villages on the road.

The road to the park

Friendly women posing for a picture

Inside the park, view of the river

The pirogue to Ile du Lamantin

The banks of the river, seen from the pirogue

No elephants or lions this week-end, but we could sight other wildlife

(antilopes, baboons, hippos, eagles, deer, buffaloes and lots of birds)

Arrival on the island

The French managed Ecolodge on the Ile du Lamantin

is a great place to spend a couple of days in the wilderness.

We only had a couple of delicious meals here, but are already planning to come back to stay!

In the village at the park’s entrance (where we are staying), we enjoy the

dancing performance of a welcome committee for the French Ambassador,

also visiting this week-end.

More wildlife

One of the most scenic spots in the park, the Site Archeologique (so called

because of the traces of previous human settlements that can be found in the area).

On Sunday morning I practiced some cross-country driving on a semi-forgotten

track our guide chose, in search for some lost elephants.

No luck with the elephants, which appeared to have all migrated to Burkina or Benin,

where it had rained more than here. But the ride was fun nonetheless!

These enormous trees are one of the most impressive features of this part of the park

Termite mounds are not small either

The bakery in Tapoa

Granaries along the road, heading back to Niamey


Whenever we stop to look at the landscape, kids appear from nowhere and come running to our car

Wells are the busiest spots, in this arid countryside

Nice to see that solar technology has arrived in these otherwise primitive villages

The Sunday market, 20 km South of Niamey

One of the many charming rural mosques

A valuable, bright blue gate for a compound surrounded by metal mesh

and containing... a straw hut.

2km before Niamey’s checkpoint we experienced the last challenge of the week-end:

changing a tire on sandy ground, that gives way under the pressure of the car jack

Click below for more pictures of Niger


In & Around Niamey                            Agadez                      Niger (May-Sept 12)                Niger (Oct-Apr13)

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