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Baia Dos Tigres Angola Safaris
Baia dos Tigres is the largest island of Angola, and is located in the Namibe Province. Baia dos Tigres is approximately 30 kilometres long and can only be reached by boat. Baia dos Tigres is an amazing area, where huge sand dunes fall precipitously into the sea and where there are vast shallow lagoons that abound with bird and other marine life. The nearest settlement to Baia dos Tigres is Foz do Cunene, which is 74.6 Km. Foz do Cunene is a large perennial river that forms part of a boundary between Namibia and Angola. The settlement of Foz do Cunene is situated at the banks of the river 6m from the sea. The settlement was originally built to accommodate the operators at the water pumping station which supplied the fishing town on the peninsula of Baia dos Tigres. The sea eventually broke through, severing the water line and creating an island of Tigres. The town and pump station were thus abandoned and the desert is slowly reclaiming the land.
The Ilha dos Tigres of Angola is the only sandy island off the coast of the 2 000km-long Namib Desert and it remains the least known coastal wetland on a desert coast rich in shorebirds. Two surveys of the Baia dos Tigres region in 1999 and 2001 indicated a rich wetland bird diversity consisting of 25 species, with a total of 11 000 birds, at a density of 33 birds km−1 of beach. There are also established breeding grounds for several species of seabirds, with northward range extensions. The region supports the regionally threatened Red Data birds, and several threatened marine turtles as well at the Cunene River mouth, near Ilha dos Tigres.
Before the civil war, Baia dos Tigres was a commercial fishing community. This area is beautiful, isolated, unpopulated, and still has a many of the Portuguese-style buildings from yesteryear. With no infrastructure available on this island the only form of accommodation available is tents. The dunes to-and-from this island are very high and close to the beach, which means all driving needs to be done at high speeds and during low tide. Although the driving at Baia dos Tigres can be difficult the fishing makes up for it. There are fish weighing over 200 kg (including sharks and rays) and lots of kob, ranging in size from 3 to 50 kilograms. The kob are known to take anything thrown at them with bait (spinners, spoons, tobeys) all producing good results and a delightful fishing experience.