Nouakchott is the capital of Mauritania. In Berber language, it means Land of Winds. Nouakchott is also the largest city in the country. One of the largest cities in the Sahara, Nuakshot is a city on the coast of the Atlantic Ocean. The city was known as a fishing town before it was founded.
Where is Nouakchott?
Mauritania is a northwest African country. To the west is the Atlantic Ocean, to the southwest is Senegal, to the southeast and east is Mali, to the northeast is Algeria, and to the north is Western Sahara. Mauritania is the 29th largest country in the world.
When Did Nouakchott Become the Capital?
Nouakchott was a small fishing village under French rule under pre-colonial times. As Mauritania was preparing for independence, it had to be chosen from the capital, and today’s Nouakchott region was elected. Odah Daddah (President of Mauritania) wanted the new capital to be a symbol of modernity and national unity that excludes existing cities or towns indoors. The village was chosen as the capital for its central location between Saint-Louis, Senegal and Nouadhibou, the city where the Mauritanian colony was ruled.
Features of Nouakchott
Nouakchott has a population of 958,399 according to 2013 data. San Jose has a surface area of 1000 square kilometers. The lowest temperature in the city during the year is 13 ° C and the highest temperature is 33 ° C. Throughout the year, an average of 130 mm of precipitation falls, with a kind of Desert Climate where the Desert and the Mediterranean climate mix. The flora of the city, where arid weather prevails, is quite sparse. In the city, there are fishing and ovine breeding.
The Nouakchott economy is largely based on animal husbandry. The most grown animal is sheep. The most common agricultural products are palm, millet, cereal, rice, peanut and various vegetables. Fishing is also an important source of income in this country. The ratio of those working in agriculture, animal husbandry and fishery sector is approximately 75 percent. Mauritania has various underground resources, mainly iron and copper. Iron and copper ores are exported and contribute to the national economy.
If you get up without drinking at least 2 cups of tea when you are invited to a house, it is considered disrespectful. Credit card usage is almost non-existent. Only used in 5 star hotels. It is recommended not to go anywhere near the Western Sahara area. Abductions by Al Qaeda can be experienced especially on the road to Morocco.
The name Mauritania comes from Mauretania, the Berber Kingdom. Approximately 40% of the population lives in cities. The average life is 46 years. In a country with a young population, approximately 45 percent of the population is under 14 years of age. When eating, use your right hand as recommended in other Arab countries. Since it is a purely Muslim country, women should leave their arms wide open and should not wear clothes above their knees. Men should prefer pants instead of shorts. Even when shaking hands with women from the local community, contact is not welcome.
Important Places to See in Nouakchott
The fruit and vegetable market established during the day can be visited. You can visit the mosques reflecting the African aesthetics in Nuakşot and sit in a place you like and taste the foamy mint teas. A stroll is possible on Bakar Ahmet Street. The most important thing to see in Nouakchott is the fish market. Smuggling is widespread in Mauritania, so smuggled cars and telephones from Europe are sold cheaply.
Avenue Kennedy, the famous hill of Nouakchott, offers good food shops. There is also a small market here. Silver jewelry, Mauritanian souvenirs, camel wool carpets can be bought here.
Among the must-see places in Nouakchott are Ibn Abbas Mosque, Plage de Pecheurs Beach and Sixima Market.