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Gabon Back

Gabon, on the west coast of Africa, is one of the area's most stable countries. Gabon gained independence from France in 1960 and since then has had 3 presidents.

Gabon gains a lot of revenue from oil production. The majority of the population live in urban areas; however, many of the 1.5 million people live in poverty. Approximately three quarters of the country is covered in thick rainforest which holds thousands of different plant and animal species. There is also a tree called the okoumé, which is the staple part of the timber industry in the country.

Much of Gabon culture and heritage is remembered through oral histories. Because of this the country is renowned for its myths, legends and folklore. Masks are also a key part of Gabon’s heritage. Their exquisitely-crafted masks made from rare wood and precious materials are world-renowned and are generally used in traditional celebrations and ceremonies. The music in Gabon is not as traditional as its neighbours like Cameroon. As well as traditional drumming and folk music, imported music such as rock and hip-hop from the US and UK are also popular.

Football is the national sport of Gabon. This is played mostly along the coast since the inland rainforest is so dense. Sports growing in popularity include basketball, boxing and squash. Tourists are starting to visit the country more and more for trekking and biking.

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