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Nouakchott Travel Guide, Mauritania

Nouakchott Travel Guide – Geography and Climate

This Nouakchott travel guide will inform you about the basic characteristics of the capital of Mauritania, Nouakchott. It is the administrative and economical centre of the country and without a doubt the largest city in the country, as well as one of the most important urban agglomerations in the Sahara desert. Nouakchott is located on the shore of the Atlantic Ocean and it has a big port, but the city is spread widely and has very few tall buildings, providing a good connection between the nomadic and the urban populations. It has an estimated total of 2.000.000 inhabitants and supports the country by its exports of minerals and crops and also by its eight oil blocks located off the coast. Temperatures drop down to a minimum of 13 degrees and can reach 33 degrees in the hottest season.

Nouakchott Travel Guide – City Peculiarities

The name of the city is said to have come from the Berber expression meaning “place of the winds” and it apparently was chosen as capital due to its permissive climate and central location in the country’s territory. People chose to move to the city since the 70s due to the severe draught and for the hope of a better life, so Nouakchott became an ideal urban destination for the locals. Consequently the population rose dramatically, considering the fact that in 1980 the city had just 150.000 inhabitants. It is very difficult to estimate the exact number of people because many are nomads, setting up tents and then leaving in different locations according to their needs. The official religion is Islam but there is also a Catholic cathedral in the city.

Nouakchott Travel Guide – Infrastructure and Plans

The current plan of the local authorities is to clean the slums at the outskirts of the city and bring more than 10.000 families in proper housings in the city, but there are rising doubts due to the lack of proper infrastructure. Nouakchott travel guides will tell you about its international airport and its port that accounts for more than 90% of the imports in the country. The Mauritania Railway is under construction and it is planned to link the country to Sudan and China. Nouakchott has the only University in the country and is home to the National Library and the National Archives. Other attractions of the city are its Silver Market and the beaches which are full of fishermen. The city of Dakar is located at 400 kilometers away, while Freetown in Sierra Leone is located at more than 1000 kilometers away from Nouakchott.

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