Parc National du Delta du Saloum Things to Do

  • Island village
    Island village
    by grets
  • Grain storage
    Grain storage
    by grets
  • Baobab tree
    Baobab tree
    by grets

Most Recent Things to Do in Parc National du Delta du Saloum

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    The finished product

    by grets Written Jan 24, 2005

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    Mussels

    The finished product - mussels cleaned, boiled and ready to eat, are now dried on mats on the ground before being sold in the local markets. It is a very labour intensive process for very little return, but at least it provides an income for the villagers.

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    Preparing the mussles

    by grets Written Jan 24, 2005

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    Boiling mussels

    The next step in the process is to boil the mussels to get the shells to open up. In the background you can see the huge mountain of mussel shells which is left over after the edible part has been extracted.

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    Island village

    by grets Written Jan 24, 2005

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    Island village

    We also visited a very different village on one of the many islands, where we were free to walk amongst the huts and the women working. This village had a very different and much friendlier feel to it than the fishing village. The people were very welcoming and charming, eager to show us their way of life.

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    Fishing village

    by grets Written Jan 24, 2005

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    Fishing village

    This being a river delta, fish is plentiful here and most of the population make a living from fishing. We visited a small fishing village on ther banks of the river, to see how they catch, dry and prepare the fish.

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    The ancient baobab tree

    by grets Written Jan 24, 2005

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    Baobab tree

    Known as the 'upside down' tree because its bare branches look like roots jetting out into the sky, the baobab tree dominates the landscape in this reagion. A local tale tells that devil himself uprooted the tree and placed it upside down. The baobab is also believed to have magical powers because of its ability to store water in the huge trunk. Other names for the tree includes 'monkey bread tree' from the pulpy nature of the large yellow fruits.

    Superstition abounds around the baobab tree, and most villages have at least one specimen. There are few trees around with so many uses: The fruit is made into a drink, musical instrumets are fashioned from the bark, the fragrant white flowers are used as decoration during festivals. Leaves are eaten either frsh or dried. Dried leaves are powedered and used for medicinal purposes, said to cure rheumatism and inflammations. The bark is used to help cure malaria, the pulp is a remedy for circulatory ailments, the seeds are manufactured into soap and fertiliser. The gourd-like shells are fashioned into containers, bark can be woven into rope and cloth as well as being used as packing paper. The hollow trunks have been used as shelter over the centuries, whilst any dead trees are utilised as firewood or made into boats. Baobab trees have long been popular places for burials.

    This tree is said to be 800 years old, and unlike most trees, it does not increase in height as it gets older, it actually gets shorter whilst the girth increases, just like humans.

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    Grain storage

    by grets Written Jan 24, 2005

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    Grain storage

    Also common to this region, is the growing of various grain. On our way to the coast we came across the interesting grain storage by the side of the track.

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    Making a living

    by grets Written Jan 24, 2005

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    Cleaning mussels

    The inhabitants of this village make their living by collecting mussels from the surrounding mangroves. The mussels have to be manually cleaned as a first step in the process.

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    Drying fish

    by grets Written Jan 24, 2005

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    Drying fish

    Most of the fish which is caught around these waters are air dried on large tables along the coast, before being sold in the local markets.

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Parc National du Delta du Saloum Things to Do

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