Top 10 must-see places in Senegal


The Senegal, country of Teranga is full of sites and will delight young and old! Upon arrival in Dakar, the capital, hasten you leave your luggage at the inhabitant and go survey the surroundings.

In fact, a stopover in the other cities would be welcome, through the mythical Casamance, an exotic region where nature takes its course ...

Here therefore the top 10 of these unique places not to be missed!

1 Dakar, modern

Must, this city is not only the capital of Senegal, but especially the country's economic powerhouse. cosmopolitan city full Dakar concentrates a population of over two million inhabitants. They can be found there many cultural sites, including Independence Square, Port of Dakar, the presidential palace, numerous famous markets (Sandaga Tilène, Kermel), not to mention the Great Mosque of Dakar.

Outside of Dakar Plateau, on the outskirts, do not forget to visit the craft market Soumbédioune, the Corniche for a memorable ballads, the imposing monument of the African renaissance and Almadies, which remains a place particularly popular with celebrities.

2 St. Louis, local gem.

St. Louis, "Ndar" in Wolof is often referred to as the most beautiful city of Senegal. Ancient capital, this town full of stories seems to be an open air museum for the tourist who is on his first visit. Indeed, a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2000, most of its houses date back to the colonial period.

Currently, the city is undergoing profound changes, and that, through an extensive renovation program, transforming its old restaurants in hotels and restaurants, to get to the expectations of the current tourism. However, she wants to keep most of its old buildings and monuments. Among them, the Faidherbe Bridge (dated 1865), the Governor's Palace, its cathedral and mosques. Unlike Dakar, resolutely turned towards the international, St. Louis wants to embody the essential link between tradition and modernity.

3 Goree, land of arts.

If he had remained only one, it would be this one ... Old-rotating plate during the period of slavery, Gorée Island is today a popular site tourists.

A symbol of the slave trade in Africa, this island not far from Dakar (accessible by boat) focuses numerous museums, including the House of Slaves, the Museum of Women, ect. Castel dominates this photogénénique whole and its ascent on foot promises visitors to take the measure of the architectural beauty of this bay view from above. Moreover Gorée, an island without a car, nor two wheels, so you can enjoy pleasantly this privileged space. But beware, if you want peace, do not go there in summer!

How to get there? At the pier of the port of Dakar, taking the boats that take you to the island. Round trips daily, but check the schedules.

4. Thies or understated elegance

True major railway line being at 70 km east of Dakar, Thies is the country's second economic city. A dynamic and insaississable, the only way to get an idea of ​​this vibrant city is to go there! Indeed, this quiet town, not devoid of interest has preserved its charm of yesteryear combined with ambitious projects.

Here we must allow time to time: the streets are much less crowded than in Dakar, markets are also less stressful; can hesitate, talk with vendors and go without being harpooned by street vendors ... student town, it brings together including many prestigious schools that train future executives in several areas. Do not miss the Promenade des Thiessois, Place de France, the Senegalese manufacture of decorative arts, or the neighborhood "Ibrahima Sarr"

5 . Touba, the holy city

Touba comes from the Arabic "Tuba", which means "bliss, bliss." True epicenter of the Mouride Muslim brotherhood, it was founded in 1887 by Sheikh Ahmadou Bamba serigne Khadimou Rasul, who built this city helped his disciples. Nowadays, it is a highly urbanized city, however, has a specific font and a settlement based on Shari'a.

The Great Mosque of Touba left the building as side during a visit, without forgetting the library which houses the writings of the founding father of the city.

The Grand Magal of Touba (meaning in Wolof "honor, celebrate) sign the meeting of several people who flock from all parts to come to commemorate the exile of the founder of the brotherhood of the Mouride. During this pious period , Senegal alive with the city of Touba, through religious scansions population and thanksgiving for example, the offering of food. This festival is held during the eighteenth day of the second month of the Hegira. More information on

. 6 Lake Rose

Large lagoon that is more shallow, located 30 km northeast of the capital, the Retba lake commonly known as Lake Rose has a color that changes from pink to purple, depending on the intensity of sunlight. < / p>

Here at all hours of the day are sketched ballet more atypical: men and women experienced engaged in the extraction of salt, among the salt dunes and amazed tourists. Moreover, the Pink Lake is one of the most visited sites in the country. Near the lake, many hotels hosting visitors.

How to get there: Take the beach at low tide from Dakar by the beach, or go through the national road n & deg; 1 drive (Rufisque Sangalkam then Bambilor). Allow about an hour away.

. 7 parks and reserves

Boasting a location more affluent, this country is rocked by both the Sahel border to the north and the great rainforest. You can start the adventure, crossing its ancient baobab trees, desert valleys to visit at leisure the wide range of parks and natural reserves that are available to you.

Among the most famous, you have: the island of la Madeleine (north of Dakar), forest and zoo Hann National Park Niokolo Koba (eastern Senegal), the ecological path of the reserve Mbour, the Turtles protection Center of Senegal (in Sangalkam, road Bambilor) and the National park of the Saloum Delta.

8 The beaches and fishing sites <. / span>

With its 700 km of sandy beaches and lazy side, you will not be disappointed, as the country focuses numerous beaches on its territory. But be careful, because most of these sites are overcrowded in summer or reduced to be bait to tourists. And better able to swim well because rescuers are not present everywhere, so be careful. Not to mention that naturism on the beach is not well seen on site ...

However, here are some highly rated beaches: Ouakam, Ngor Village, Yoff, Saly, beach Goree. For those who opt for stays in clubs, check if during your stay, you will have access to private beaches, which are generally safer and better framed.

As for Mbour sites (80 km south of Dakar) and Somone (77 km south of Dakar), located in the city of Thies, they bring together fishing sites, but Ausi known for their beaches .

. 9 Casamance

Among the Gambia and Guinea Bissau, Casamance is a region that is home to many natural and historical sites. Its inhabitants, the Casamance speak many dialects whose Diola, which remains the dominant language. The largest cities are Casamance Cap Skirring, Kolda, Sédhiou Velingara, Ziguinchor, Bignona, not to mention the region Oussouye. While the trip is long, but the journey is worth it.

Indeed, the Casamance trademark is their local products and the reputation of their famous rich and delicious fruit. On your journey, do not miss the village of Kafountine, including a quaint village renowned for its fishing village!

How to get there? For Ziguinchor, go north by Bignona, then towards Diouloulou.

10 Popenguine and its black Madonna

This symbolic site hosts not only the Black Madonna, but also other statues of saints and holy. All these statues are gathered in a cave, that of Popenguine which is on the small north coast 55 km from Dakar.

In February 1992, Pope John Paul II celebrated Mass and blessed at the same time the Black Madonna. This beautiful place is now a protected site, and due to its ongoing success sees many visitors affuence increase each year.


Senegal tourism: http: //

Sophie Ball.