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World Heritage Site

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Garamba National Park

Garamba National Park

Garamba National Park aims to protect the world's last known wild population of the critically endangered northern white rhinoceros.

It comprises an area of savannah, marshland and forests in the far northeast of the DR of Congo, on the border with South Sudan.

The park was established in 1938, making it one of Africa's oldest national parks. It covers 492,000 ha. At an altitude of 700-1,000 m, Garamba is much flatter and has a different vegetation than the more mountaineous other Congolese WHS.

Since inscription in 1980, the park has been declared ‘In Danger’ twice. The northern white rhino population dwindled as a result of poaching from 1,000 in 1960 to 21 at the moment of WH inscription. It suffered further from 1996 on, due to the influx of South Sudanese refugees and rebels. In 2005 there were only four remaining northern white rhinos in Garamba National Park. However, they have not been seen since 2006 and it is feared they have been killed and the species has become extinct in the wild.

Map of Garamba National Park


  • Natural

Community Reviews

Barbara Boudreau USA - 03-Dec-05

I did the field work portion of my Master's degree at Garamba in 1993 and 1995. Then, in December 1995, my husband and I got married at the Hippo Pool on the Dungu River right outside the park. We have wonderful memories from Garamba, and I understand now that the wildlife there is in grave danger and poaching has become rampant and constant. There were still lots of animals left when we were there, around 11,000 elephants and 35 rhinoceros. Now the number of elephants is down to around one thousand. Very sad, but the reality of a political system like the Congo's.

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Site Info

Full name: Garamba National Park

Unesco ID: 136

Inscribed: 1980 In Danger

Type: Natural

Criteria: 7   10  

Link: By Name By ID

Site History

  • 2007 - Reinforced Monitoring 
  • 1996 - In Danger impact of the war and civil conflicts in the Great Lakes region.
  • 1992 - Removed from Danger list 
  • 1984 - In Danger very critical situation of the white rhinoceros population, now estimated to total less than 15 specimens
  • 1980 - Inscribed 


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  • Garamba National Park


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Human Activity


  • Early Pleistocene: "The transition from the equatorial forest to northern latitude savannas was most probably gradual throughout the early Pleistocene" Link

World Heritage Process


1 community members have visited Garamba National Park.