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“Never seen so many pelicans!”

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Djoudj National Bird Sanctuary
Ranked #1 of 12 things to do in Saint-Louis
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: The Senegal River and surrounding wetlands host pelicans, pink flamingos as well asb many thousands migrating birds.
Level 4 Contributor
23 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Never seen so many pelicans!”
Reviewed 4 February 2014

Cormorants, pelicans, egrets, herons and tons and tons and tons of them! Awesome place for bird lovers!

Visited January 2014
Thank NYonMyMind
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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256 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Hungarian first
  • Italian first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
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  • Any
English first
Level 6 Contributor
86 reviews
29 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
“An unbelievable gathering of birds, but very poor guiding”
Reviewed 19 January 2014

i have not seen this many pelicans in my life ( and i am well travelled in africa…). The problem is tourists are herded into a large boat, including kids and bored tourist who are finding something to do when feeling stuck in saint louis. Beware when hiring a guide from St Louis's tourist office - mine knew nothing and spent time in silence. Also, i found out from another guide there were flamingos (other tourists showed me photos as well from day before), but required extra driving to a different spot - my guide hired from the office of tourism refused and told there were none in the park at the moment. And surprise as we saw many of them flying over our car…You will see a lot of hogs.

Visited December 2013
Thank sotola
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level 6 Contributor
110 reviews
28 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
“World Heritage Site - Surpassed our expectations”
Reviewed 19 January 2014

The Sanctuary surpassed our expectations and I wished we had had more time to spend there. We were greeted by thousands of white-faced whistling ducks, flamingo, egrets and heron. A beautiful sight in this country!

We took a guided boat tour into the interior. We saw a wide variety of birds en route to the pelican breeding ground. There we saw thousands of female pelicans with chics! What an amazing sight. There were cormorants, eagles, hawks, heron and a number of other species along the way.

The boat operator took time to move close to the banks for viewing and halted as long as we needed. There were a number of guides on board with clients who were very good at spotting birds we might otherwise have missed on our own.

We had coffee at the small stand at the pier - an authentic Café Touba with cloves and pepper. Wow! This was a treat we hadn't had elsewhere.

The reception center was nicely appointed and had modern toilet facilities. There are some lovely murals painted on the walls depicting several of the most popular birds in the park. I apologize for not having recorded the name of the artist, but we did see more of her work in Saint Louis.

Bring binoculars and you'll enjoy the day a whole lot more!

By the way, we organized our trip through the Tourism Office in Saint-Louis. We were able to secure transportation, tickets and guide. They were very helpful, organized and on time!

Visited December 2013
Thank FamilyTravellerMI
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Marlborough, Massachusetts
Level 6 Contributor
157 reviews
36 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 149 helpful votes
“An Amazing Experience”
Reviewed 18 January 2014

We visited Djoudj in December, 2013. An excellent guide, Ismaila Low (phone +221 77 275 58 66 sowguia@hotmail.com Ismaila speaks excellent Spanish, French, Italian and pretty good English) took us to the sanctuary, got us the best seats on the boat, and knew all the birds by species and explained behaviors.

This is the first body of permanent water south of the Sahara, so the birds that migrate from Europe stop here. Intrepid bird kooks can venture into the back tracks of the park with a guide, but we casual tourists take a two hour boat ride. Ismaila got us front row seats in the boat and we waited for several cars and a bus of other tourists while watching a flock of pelicans, like synchronized swimmers, diving for fish. Also cormorants, ibis, including "sacred ibis" down from Egypt, small herons, cattle egrets, ducks, water chickens (that's what Ismaila called them in Spanish, "pollos de agua". They looked like chickens) and other small birds that the intrepid bird kooks could have identified if they weren't off on the back tracks. We were pretty impressed. How naive we were.

The boat took off and headed up a channel in the marshy swampland. All sorts of birds were flying along in various formations. As we came around a bend there was a flock of pelicans, hundreds of them, diving for fish. As the boat approached, they started taking off, flying all around as did the cormorants and other birds. It was like a ballet with a thousand birds of various colors and sizes, flying all around, landing and taking off again, as the boat moved among them. Eventually we got to the nursery where vast numbers of juvenile pelicans, about the size of chickens, and all black, were waiting for mom and dad to return with breakfast. The ballet continued all around.

Suddenly one of the guides yelled and the boat pulled over to the side where a crocodile lay half-submerged. Everyone stood and snapped photos until he slunk off behind a bush. Ismaila said it was the first crocodile that had been spotted in ten days.

Eventually the boat headed back. As we got out, someone spotted a snake in the reeds at the waters edge. Driving out we saw warthogs and a single monkey.

Visited December 2013
Thank bishikawa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Perugia, Italy
Level 5 Contributor
51 reviews
22 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 January 2014

I advice this park to everybody: it is a really sanctuary of couloured birds. You can visit it just during the winter season, but from your boat tour you can admire pelicans, cormorans, crocodriles and many others birds

Visited December 2013
Thank Cristina403
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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