Gashaka-Gumti National Park

National Park in Nigeria

Nigeria's largest national park, Gashaka-Gumti is also the remotest and least-explored part of the country. Its 6700-sq-km area contains rolling hills, savannah, montane forest – as wild and spectacular a corner of Africa as you could wish for. It also holds incredible diversity and is one of West Africa's most important primate habitats, as well as supporting lions, elephants, hippos and buffaloes.

The park is open year-round, although access is easiest during the dry season (December to March). The best way to visit is through the Gashaka Primate Project (www.ucl.ac.uk/gashaka), a UK-based conservation group that works with the park to protect the watershed and wildlife within. It has rooms for around N1500 a night, but you must bring your own food. It's important to get in touch with the project first because you need to be prepared. There are also volunteer opportunities.

The park entrance is at Serti, 10 hours from Jos; from there head to the riverside park headquarters at Gashaka (campsite N200, chalets N300), or take an okada to Kwano (a further 12km) where the primate researchers are mainly based. Exploring with a guide, you can go chimp-tracking by foot (there are plentiful other monkeys to see too), or do a great two- or three-day hike to the mountains, via several Fulani villages. It's a truly magical place.


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