Famous Sites in Chad, Africa

Famous Sites in Chad, Africa
A landlocked nation in central Africa, Chad has a turbulent history dominated by civil unrest and skirmishes with neighboring countries. Although rich in culture with a religiously and culturally diverse population, most citizens of Chad live in abject poverty. In 2005, the entire country had less than 350 miles of paved roads.

Travel to Chad is not for the faint-hearted. In June 2009, The US government issued a travel advisory warning visitors not to visit the conflict-prone eastern zone of the country or the border with the Central African Republic. Determined adventurers can still visit Chad, although it is advised that you travel with an experienced guide at all times.

N'djamena

The capital of Chad and the only large city in the country, N'djamena is a regional market site and the center of Chad's cotton, cattle and fishing industries. Much of the city was destroyed in the Chadian civil war in 1979, but the Chad National Museum and several mosques and cathedrals still remain.

Zakouma National Park

This 1,200-square-mile national park is in a period of restoration after years of civil war. You'll need an experienced guide to get there, but expect to be rewarded with lion, giraffe and elephant sightings. The park changes completely between the wet and dry seasons, with vast wetlands swamping the area during the rainy season in July and August.

Lake Chad

Once a vast inland sea, today Lake Chad straddles four countries: Chad, Cameroon, Niger and Nigeria. The southern end is less than 70 miles northwest of N'djamena. Wildlife including fish, waterfowl, hippos and crocodiles inhabit the lake, with small fishing villages dotting the coast. It's possible to camp in Bol, a small township with an airstrip.

Ennedi Desert

A three-day 4WD trip from N'djamena, the Ennedi Desert is worth the trouble to some adventurers because of its unusual natural rock formations, sand cathedrals, and ancient rock paintings. Visitors can follow the route of the ancient salt caravans, from the Oasis Hachim to the palm-lined Lake Ouniagha Sakhar.

Tibesti Mountains

The highest point in the Sahara, the Tibesti mountains stretch for 300 miles across northwestern Chad and into Niger. The highest point is Emi Koussi, a volcano 11,200 feet above sea level. The area is inhabited by nomadic tribespeople from the Teda and Daza tribes, and a German geological research station operates from the mineral-rich Aozou Strip.

Article Written By Hailey Williams

Hailey Williams is a freelance writer and editor from Los Angeles, California. She has a particular interest in culture, lifestyle, health, and women's interest reporting, and her work has been published in magazines including TV Week and Sugar. She graduated from the University of Sydney.

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