The East Nimba Nature Reserve (ENNR) covers 11,533 hectares, is home to 317 animal species of which 107 are mammals, 2,500 invertebrate species, and 2000 plant types. Forming part of the Upper Guinea Forest Ecosystem of West Africa which extends from Guinea into eastern Sierra Leone; eastward through Liberia, Côte d'Ivoire and Ghana; and into western Togo; Liberia's share of this biodiversity hotspot is 45%.
This misty mountains is home to endangered species as the Nimba Toad, Nimba Otter shrew and West African Chimpanzee. Managed by the Forestry Development Authority of Liberia, forest guards are available to provide tours while also protecting some of the world's most endangered animals that roam the ENNR, such as the Western chimpanzees which use stones as tools, pygmy hippopotamus, zebra duiker, and West African lion. Endemic animals found only in the ENNR and nowhere else in the world are the dwarf otter shrew, and Lamotte's roundleaf bat. The African Giant Swallowtail, recorded as the world's largest butterfly, is also endemic to the ENNR.
The Nimba Range has a distinct freshwater ecoregion, because of high portion of endemic aquatic species. Many groups pack up picnic baskets, enough water, comfortable shoes, camera for the most awe-inspiring images, and head up to what has been called one of the most amazing places to enjoy.
The ENNR is approximately a 6 – 7 hours drive from Monrovia. With paved roads that takes you into Ganta, and less than 1.5 hours on graded road, the drive is a pleasant and scenic one. Monrovia through Kakata, Gbarnga, Ganta, Sanniquellie and into Yekepa.
Places to stay
Ganta, 1.5 hours away has a few local guest houses. Sanniquellie which is 30 minutes away has Jackie's Guest House and a couple of others. In Yekepa, there is Alvino Hotel.
There are several places along the way. Generally the better hotels have restaurants that serve mostly local foods. In Yekepa, Alvino's offers a good restaurant. There is the Green Bar, a cool outdoor spot for drinks.