The 7 best places to visit in the Ivory Coast

 

In the south west of the country, close to the border with Liberia is the 4,540 square kilometre (1,753 square mile) Tai National Park, one of the last remaining portions of the vast primary Upper Guinean rainforest that once stretched across Togo, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Liberia and Sierra Leone. Home to eleven species of primates, the forest is also home to important threatened species that include pygmy hippopotamus, olive colobus monkey, leopards, chimpanzees and Jentink's duiker. As the largest island of primary forest remaining in West Africa, Tai National Park has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

7. Taï National Park

 

In the far south east of the country, situated on the Atlantic Coast is the former capital and most populated city in the country, Abidjan, the sixth most populated city in Africa. The beating heart of the Ivory Coast, the cities skyscrapers rise above the Ebrie Lagoon, with modern stand out buildings such as La Pyramide and the swooping St. Paul's Cathedral tethered to a giant cross. Visitors seeking museums, Ivorian culture and nightlife should look no further than a visit to Abidjan.

6. Abidjan

 

In the far west of the country, covering an area of some 950 square kilometres (367 square miles) is Mont Sangbe National Park, encompassing an area of rugged terrain at the eastern end of the Monts Du Toura Mountain range that extends into neighbouring Guinea and Liberia. The landscape is comprised of densely vegetated savanna woodland with the occasional gigantic granite monolithic rocks that can reach 700 metres (2,296 ft) above sea level. The varied wildlife in the park includes African bush elephant, Diana monkey, buffalo, warthog, crocodiles and a high number of chimpanzees among many many more.

5. Mont Sângbé National Park

In the south east of the country, situated on the southern Atlantic Coast is the historic town of Grand-Bassam, the French colonial capital from 1893 to 1896. Considered a great example of the once vibrant centre of the French territory in the Gulf Of Guinea, the city holds a wealth of grand colonial architecture, earning it the status as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

4. Historic Grand Bassam

 

In the far north east of the country, covering an enormous 11,500 square kilometres (4,440 square miles) of protected land is Comoe National Park, encompassing the most biodiverse savanna in the world with a remarkable diversity of wildlife. Among the gallery forests, grasslands and rocky outcrops the park is home to 71 species of reptile and 135 mammal species that includes 11 species of primate. Such is the abundance of diverse wildlife and terrain, the entire park has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

3. Comoe National Park

 

In the extreme west of the country, crossing the border with neighbouring Guinea is the Mount Nimba Strict Nature Reserve, covering around 50 square kilometres (19 square miles) of the Nimba Mountain Range within the Ivory Coast. Considered to be among the most visually spectacular terrain in the country and home to an incredible array of unusually rich flora and fauna within a geographically unique landscape, the reserve has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

2. Mount Nimba Strict Nature Reserve

 

Completed in 1990 in the capital, Yamoussoukro, is the Basilica Of Our Lady Of Peace, the largest church in the world. Built in a Renaissance Baroque architectural style and inspired by St. Paul's Cathedral in Vatican City, it is constructed from marble imported from Italy and furnished with 7,000 square metres (75,000 square feet) of stained glass from France, whilst the cross on the dome stands 158 metres (518 ft) high. As the single largest church building on the planet it surely is a man made wonder of Africa.

1. Basilica Of Our Lady Of Peace

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