If you're visiting the nearby city of Saint Louis, Senegal, add an extra night to include Djoudj National Park. Its main attraction is the bird life—180 species, including crested cranes, pink flamingos and pelicans—but about 20 different mammals, including the warthog and the jackal, live there, too.
If you arrive before dusk, you can witness the return of thousands of birds from their feeding grounds. The whir of these birds as they pass low over your head is unforgettable (you can repeat the experience the next morning when the birds take off).
It is forbidden to enter Djoudj National Park without hiring a guide. The best time to visit the park is November-March, when the greatest number of birds are in residence. You can tour the park by canoe, camel, car and/or horseback. The park lies 125 mi/200 km northeast of Dakar.
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