Simien National Park World Heritage Site
Parc national du Simien, Ethiopia
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Simien Mountains National Park is one of the National Parks of Ethiopia. Located in the Semien (North) Gondar Zone of the Amhara Region, its territory covers the Simien Mountains and includes Ras Dashan, the highest point in Ethiopia.
It is home to a number of extremely rare species, including the Ethiopian wolf, Gelada Baboon, and the Walia Ibex, a wild goat found nowhere else in the world. The Caracal also occurs within the Simien Mountains. More than 50 species of birds inhabit the park, including the impressive Bearded Vulture, or Lammergeier, with its 10-foot (3m) wingspan.
The park is crossed by an unpaved road which runs from Debarq, where the administrative headquarters of the park is located, east through a number of villages to the Buahit Pass, where the road turns south to end at Mekane Berhan 10 kilometers beyond the park boundary.
The park was established in 1969, having been set up by Clive Nicol, who wrote about his experiences in From the Roof of Africa (1971, ISBN 0 340 14755 5).
It was one of the first sites to be made a World Heritage Site by UNESCO (1978). However, due to serious population declines of some of its characteristic native species, in 1996 it was also added to the List of World Heritage Sites in danger.
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