Garamba National Park is a national park covering an immense expanse of savannahs, grasslands and marshlands in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. It is the natural habitat for four large mammals, the African elephant, the giraffe, the hippopotamus and the white rhinoceros.
Established in 1938, Garamba National Park is one of the oldest national parks in Africa. Unfortunately, as with all the national parks in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Garamba has been facing severe threat from poaching, especially of its white rhinoceros, whose numbers have dwindled to just around 30.
Since the 1960's, Garamba National Park has embarked on a domestication progam for the African elephants so that they can be used in the tourism industry.
Armed conflict in the Congo has resulted in refugees encroaching into Garamba National Park. This leads to increased poaching and deforestation. The national park is understaffed to handle the problem of securing its borders.
Despite the efforts of conservationists, it has been generally predicted that the white rhinoceros, now numbering less than thirty, will become extinct soon. Poaching as well as the general volatility of the region are some of the causes determined.
Garamba National Park was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site during the 4th session of the World Heritage Committee meeting in UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, France, on 1-5 September, 1980.
Garamba National Park, which had been on the List of World Heritage in Danger for some time, was removed from the list in 1992, when the World Heritage Committee was satisfied with the success there in safeguarding the population of northern white rhinoceros. However, in 1996, it was once again put on the List of World Heritage in Danger, when it was reported that four wildlife rangers at the national park were killed by poachers.
Photos of Garamba National Park
White Rhinoceros, Garamba National Park
Author: William Scot (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 2.5 Generic)
World Heritage Site Inscription Details
Location: N 4 0 0 E 29 15 0
Inscription Year: 1980
Type of Site: Natural
Inscription Criteria: VII, X
Location Map of Congo's UNESCO World Heritage Sites
View UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the Congo in a larger map
- Virunga National Park
- Kahuzi-Biega National Park
- Garamba National Park
- Salonga National Park
- Okapi Wildlife Reserve
Visiting Garamba National Park
At time of writing (April 2010), the Democratic Republic of the Congo is still regarded as not save for casual travelers. Crime rate continues to be high in the capital city as well as in other towns.