Loango National Park in detail

Other Features

Surfing Hippos

Though it hardly seems credible – a fantasy that belongs in the realm of children's novels, unicorns and flying carpets – Gabon's surfing hippos have been making waves around the world since their hobby was outed by conservationist Mike Fay in the 1990s. Unlike human surfers, the two-ton creatures are hardly a picture of grace as they frolic among the waves, but surf they do: wading into the ocean and opening their legs to catch the swell. Despite the hype, however, it's extremely unlikely you'll see hippos partaking – after all, their name comes from the Greek for 'river horse' and in general they prefer freshwater to seawater. Still, who can blame them for seeking a bit of extra excitement?