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Country info
Square area:
196,712 km2
16 million
West African Franc (XOF)
Presidential republic
Not common
Safety level
Senegal is a safe country. Petty crime occurs only in crowded places so watch your belongings when visiting markets.

Whether you are looking to dance the night away, surf on whitewashed beaches or explore mangroves and admire birds, Senegal is the answer. One of Africa’s most stable countries is on the fast track to becoming a bucket list destination for many more than just adventurists and Africa lovers. 

From the French colonial Saint Louis to the fast-growing capital of Dakar, its cities speak volumes of its past, but also present. Nature boasts deserts, marshes, seascapes. And the Senegalese people burst with teranga – as ‘warm hospitality’ is called in Wolof language.   

  • Take in the contrasts of the capital of Dakar, then hop over to Gorée Island, once a thriving slave-trade port. 
  • Visit the UNESCO-listed Saint Louis, with its colorful city heart on a small island in the river Senegal. 
  • Unwind on sandy beaches in Cap Skirring, or along the 150km stretch of the Petite Côte. 
  • Ride in a pirogue (motorized canoe) through mangroves and admire the salt marshes of Sine-Saloum delta. 
  • Spot flamingos, pelicans and nearly 400 other species of birds in the Djoudj National Bird Sanctuary.




Perfect For

Ritual masks are still used in religious and social ceremonies, representing ancestors’ spirits or the forces of good and evil.


Find inspiration in the Saint-Louis photography museum, displaying a collection of black and white pictures of West Africa taken between 1930 and 1950


Western African, with dashes of French, Portuguese and North African influences, Senegalese cuisine comes in bright colors and boldly flavored.


From birds to lions, mangroves to jungles, deserts to beaches, the nature of Senegal abounds in beautiful landscapes and diverse wildlife.


Itinerary ideas

Upon your arrival, you will be welcomed by your chauffeur and transferred to hotel. Settle in and relax for the rest of the evening.
Enjoy the morning exploring markets and urban life of Dakar before boarding the ferry to Goree Island, once a slave-trading center. Today Goree offers interesting architecture and colorful markets.
A day to explore Lac Rose, an unusual shallow vividly pink-colored lake. It is separated by narrow dunes from Atlantic Ocean. Visit the surrounding area and the biggest fishing village in Senegal.
We move to St. Louis, once the capital of French West Africa. Taking a traditional horse and carriage locally called caleche explore this vibrant town and learn about its history with a local guide.
Today we discover amazing wildlife and flocks of pelicans, flamingos in Djoudj National Park.
Afterward proceed to Kaolack with stop in Touba, a sacred town of Islamic Senegalese culture.
A day tour to beautiful Saloum islands situated in a natural reserve.
Great opportunity to interact with locals who will gladly share their tradition of fishing, canoeing and cooking with you.
Proceeding to Joal Fadiouth with en-route visit to Mbour's market. Joal became popular mostly by being the birthplace of Senegal's first president. On the way to beaches of Saly stop to en-route villages.
A morning safari in Bandia National park. Great opportunity to see antelopes, monkeys, crocodiles, zebras and if you are lucky enough even the white rhinoceros. A full day to enjoy the diverse wildlife of Senegal.
Enjoy some time at leisure before meeting with your chauffeur for a private transfer to Dakar airport for your outbound flight.
Enjoy all the main sites and attractions of this wonderful country. From Goree Island and Saint Louis to Dakar and wildlife reserves - Senegal is a true discovery!
Upon your arrival, you will be welcomed by your chauffeur and transferred to hotel. Settle in and relax for the rest of the evening.
Visit Goree island, a UNESCO listed site. Face the country's oppressive past observing the 'Door Of No Return' and visiting to Museum of Black Civilization in Dakar. Relax by visiting Dak'Art opening night.
Start day at Independence place to presidential palace and proceed to other Dakar's sites. After visiting Kermel and Tilem markets afternoon is reserved for Dak'Art displays and exhibitions.
Leisurely morning followed by transfer to St. Louis. En route, we will make lunch stop in Thies, town know for handicrafts. After some basket and hat shopping proceed for jazz evening in St.Louis.
Be amazed by visiting red dunes on our way to Rao. Meet locals in a small village and be part of their everyday life, join them in cooking and farming. Enjoy a main night of the Jazz Festival in St. Louis.
Today we move to pristine beaches of Saly with en-route visit to Touba. Taste some goods on Okass market and afterward admire most visited Islamic pilgrimage site in West Africa, the Great Mosque of Touba.
Visit Joal to get to know the birthplace of the first Senegals postcolonial president. Next we will stop in Fadiouth town, built on an island made entirely out of shells! Before return to Saly short stop in port Mbour.
On the way to Dakar stop for a safari in Bandia National Park to see the wildlife of Senegal. Proceed to 'out of this world' Pink Lake to see that salt harvest and meet the locals of Fulani village before returning to Dakar.
Enjoy some time at leisure before meeting with your chauffeur for a private transfer to Dakar airport for your flight.
As a perfect treat for your senses, enjoy Senegal's finest art and music festivals - Dak'Art and St.Louis Jazz Festival. Senegal festivals are as memorable as it gets.
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What to Expect

Lately, Senegal has seen an increase number of investments in hotel infrastructure. Dakar has most of the hotels but there are a number of ocean front hotels in Saly and also some luxury resorts in the Casmance. Several charming, colonial era properties are located in Saint Louis. All quality hotels have the standard amenities but service is not always at expected standards.
Traditional Inn at Goree Island
• In Dakar, choosing between staying at Dakar-Plateau vs. Les Almaides areas will be hard but it all depends on your preferences
• Chain hotels are mostly located in Dakar
• Saint Louis offers a lovely selection of classic, boutique properties
• Lodges in the interior of the country are not of highest standards
The climate of Senegal is tropical: hot and humid. Region's climate is also characterized by rainy season lasting from May to November and dry season from December to April. Rainy season is also characterized by very high temperatures. Senegal has a variety of very interesting festivals worth considering including in your itinerary.
Dakar year-round temperatures
• The best time to go to Senegal is during the dry season from December to March
• Some national parks can become inaccessible due to floods in the rainy season
• Abéné drumming Festival is a 10-day event that takes place end of December at Casamance
• St Louis Jazz Festival - Africa's largest - takes place every May
All hotels offer really good internet. Especially in Dakar.To be connected on the go, buying a SIM card with data is the best decision. There are three companies operating in Senegal but Orange is the one with best coverage. Best is to purchase it in the official store so the staff can assist you with installation.
Senegal SIM card
• WiFi is quite good at all hotels
• SIM card is best way to have internet at all times
• Some rural areas don't have the best coverage
• Plug types are plug C, D, E and K (European); standard voltage is 230 V and it operates on 50 Hz
The food markets of Senegal are must-see places in nearly any town. Colorful, noisy, crowded - very authentic experience but not for everyone! Senegalese food is considered among the best in Africa with a big influence from French and Moroccan cuisine just like the other countries in the region. Street food does exist but hygienic standards are not at the highest level.
Food market of Saint Louis
• All major cities offer a variety of restaurants
Thieboudienne, mafé and yassa are some of the most popular local dishes worth tasting
• "Le Clos des Baobabs" is Senegal's only wine label
• Tipping: around 10% is expected at upscale restaurants only.
As a typical African country, Senegal is a wild mix of colorful, noisy markets. Markets of Saint Louis, Dakar, Touba, and other, including all other cities and towns offer the widest selection of household items - from folk art to creative crafts. In Senegal, wooden carvings, traditional fabric, embroidery, pottery, necklaces of clay beads and costume jewelry make a great shopping choice.
At a Dakar market
• Bargaining is part of the culture
• The best selection of traditional masks is in Dakar at picturesque Marche Kermel
• Les Ateliers Tësss at Saint Louis for traditional fabrics
• Road side markets offer a wide variety of local goods
Senegal is a Muslim country so all the etiquette as in the rest of the Muslim world applies. Islam in Senegal is a bit more relaxed than in other countries with women not fully covered but do show respect wearing modestly. Dakar is very western like and modern but villages and smaller towns are quite traditional.
Typical Senegalese market
• Muslim country with traditional society outside the capital city
• If the meal is served on the floor or a low table, sit cross-legged
• Do not begin eating until the eldest male does
• Eat, greet and hand things only with the right hand
• It is polite to ask permission before taking a photograph
Senegal is known as one of the safest countries in West Africa. With relatively low levels of crime and disease, plus a stable democracy, Senegal is quite a safe travel destination. There is a Yellow fever vaccination requirement so make sure you have it before entering.
Senegalese police officer
• Very safe country with rare incidents of petty crime
• Hygienic standards are not the highest so be careful with food from markets and when eating street food
• Tap water is not safe for drinking
Senegal is easy to get around but only if your French is at the solid level. The roads are mostly in very good condition but trucks may take most of the two lane roads so the journeys take longer than expected. As always, it is best to travel with local guide and driver to avoid any issues. Locally, taxi is a good choice but best to book with hotel.
On the streets of Dakar
• Main airport for international arrivals is Yoff-Léopold Sédar Senghor International Airport in Dakar (DKR)
• Numerous small local airports all over the country
• Private car with driver and guide is the best way to travel around the country

What to pack

Senegal is a typical Muslim African country and, as in many, dress modestly respecting the local culture. Although Dakar is a cosmopolitan city, the villages are quite traditional so long pants and sleeves for women and long pants for men is recommended dress code.

In The Media

The Beauty Of Beaches In Senegal!
Time For the Africans To Tell Their Own Story!
The Lion Walk at Fathala Wildlife Reserve
Highlights of Senegal in One Video.
Dakar, Senegal: food, goree island...
One of the most beautiful countries in Africa
Senegal inaugurates largest mosque in West Africa
A powerful religious group in Senegal
Senegal/Things To Do In Dakar!
Things to do and places to Visit
Senegal - Documentary, Discovery, History
Peek Behind the Scenes
This is Africa
Senegal safari
Youssou N'Dour ft. Neneh Cherry - 7 Seconds
Popular Music in Senegal
Wolof For Beginners
Learn some Useful Phrases

Best to combine with

All neighboring countries are fascinating in their own right. From sands of Mauritania to tiny Gambia and fascinating Mali

One of the most mysterious and least visited countries of the continent

Treasure trove for birdwatchers and a great place to relax by the beach

Mysterious Mali, with it's Dogon tribe, historic Timbuktu and Djene. 


Quirks for the Curious

Saint Louis
This was a capital of French West Africa in early 1900s. And little is left from past glamour and shine. But still, fantastic place to visit! Saint Louis feels like going back in time with it's classic French architecture and the wild African charm on the streets. Once you cross to the harbor and to N'Dar island, true Africa reveals. While this town has a potential to be one of the World's top travel hot spots, it is now just a big mess of color, scents, smiles and smiles.
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The Masks at Marché Kermel
On the outer wall of Dakar's Marché Kermel is one of the nicest collections of masks one can see in this part of the world. If you are looking for mask to take home, this is the place to get it as they have everything! Also, Marché Kermel is our favorite Dakar market for the selection of goods and is not crazy and crowded as the rest of the local places.
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Senegal Wrestling
This is THE sport in Senegal! Nothing compares to wrestling and top wrestlers are local celebrities. The wrestlers often train on the local beaches but the goal is always to make it to Arene Nationale de Lutte with capacity of 20 000. Traditionally, the Serer people’s warriors used wrestling as preparation for battle as well as an initiation ritual for young men. Senegalese wrestling preparations have also elements of magic as fighters believe that luck also plays an important part in the match.
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