Niger — Things to Do
There is no doubt that a huge part of the appeal of this country situated in West Africa is the climate, which gives great opportunity for outdoor activities, any time of the year. The large majority of Niger takes up part of the Sahara Desert, and with a hot and dry climate there is potential to experience the centuries-old desert way of life, by for example, spending your time riding camels here. Climbing enthusiasts in the interior mountains will not be disappointed either, where as they gain altitude they are awarded magnificent views over the sandy desert. In the southwest of the country the mighty Niger River aids the sub-tropical climate, and provides home to a wealth of wildlife, such as hippos and giraffes. Tours to visit these African mammals are easily arranged from the capital city.
Since a large proportion of Niger encompasses the clutches of the great Sahara Desert, there is a great opportunity to try out the novel experience of riding a camel. Raid Voyages arranges multi-day tours of the region, combining this with transport in off-road vehicles to get you across the desert. You are taken on a scheduled itinerary by a group of experienced guides. All meals are inclusive of the tour, and accommodation is provided in bivouac tents.
A spine of barren mountains running through the center of the country, jut out sharply from the desert landscape, provide ample opportunity for rock climbing in Niger. K E Adventure Travel arranges small group climbing expeditions to the Djado Plateau, and other areas in Niger, including the Air Mountains near Agadez.
Niger gives the only opportunity in West Africa to see giraffes, since it is home to the last herd in the region. To spot these lofty animals merrily feeding off the treetops, you can head to Koure in the southwest of Niger and ask one of the local guides, who will take you to the protected site in off-road vehicles.
A couple of hours north of the capital, there is an opportunity to take a hippo tour of the Niger River, at Ayorou. Here, you can see the huge animals in their natural habitat, and the tour includes a visit to some of the inhabited islands of the river, where you can meet the locals and gain insight into African village life. You can arrange a tour from the banks of the river once you arrive in Ayorou, or you could charter a boat to take you upstream all the way from Niamey.
In Niger you are able to go on a safari in W National Park, where you can spot big cats like cheetahs, leopards, and lions as well as large mammals such as elephants and hippos. There are also 350 bird species living in the park. You can arrange a safari tour at the rangers office at Tapoa Gate, where you have the choice to go on a guide led expedition by off-road vehicle, dugout boats on the Niger River, or a trek into the wilderness.