Travelling

flag Senegal Senegal: Travelling

In this page: Entry Requirements | Organising Your Trip | Visiting | Living Conditions | Eating | Paying | Speaking | Useful Resources

 

Entry Requirements

Passport and Visa Service
Formalities and visas for Senegal
List of the Senegalese embassies and Consulates abroad
For Further Information
 
Check IATA Travel Website for visa requirements and health advices.
 

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Organising Your Trip


Transportation From Airport to City Centre:


Airport

Distance

Taxi

Bus

Train

Car Rental
Dakar - Leopold Senghor (DKR) 9 km / 6 miles XOF 3000-3500 - USD 5-6 XOF 250 - Available

Means of Transport Recommended in the Rest of the Country

Train reservation services
In Senegal: information on the Railways

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Major airlines

Name Type Domestic Flights International Flights
Air Senegal National YES Yes
Air France Major NO Yes

You Can Consult The EU Air Safety List. Look Also at the rating of the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

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Visiting

Different Forms of Tourism

Historical
-Dakar: the Presidential Palace; The National Assembly;
-Sine Saloum: the Saloum islands; Megalithic Sites.
-The Gorée island: the slave's house
Cultural
The Casamance: the fields, the peghe, the rice harvest and the village under the cheese maker.
Nature
- Saint-Louis and the Senegal river: the lake of Guiers; the national park of Djoudj and the Barbarie Tongue
- Cayar: the pink lake
Religious
- The Cathedral and the big Mosque of Dakar
- Touba: religious centre of the Mourides. Situated here is one of the biggest mosques of West Africa. The city is truly a place of pilgrimage.
Thermal
No thermal tourism
Beach
- Saly: the beaches of Saly.
- Joal et Fadiouth: beach of Jaol.
Winter Sports
No winter sports
Outdoor Activities
Various sports can be practiced in Senegal amongst which are: golf, fishing, diving, mountain biking, quad biking, horse riding, surfing, etc.
Shopping
Hand-painted fabrics can be made into beautiful garments, especially since the tailors work at a record speed.
It is equally possible to take back filigreed jewelry in gold or in silver, wooden sculptures and masks, wickerwork baskets, wooden vessels, copper statues and simple paintings.
It is not advisable to buy bags, shoes and belts made of crocodile skin so as not to encourage poaching. Shops are open from 8h to 12h and from 16h to 19h30 during the week.

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Living Conditions

Health and Safety

Health Precautions
The risk of malaria (especially the malignant form P. falciparum) exists everywhere, all the year round and in all the regions of the country. However, there is less risk from January to  June in the  western central region. Moreover, the virus is resistant to chloroquine in most cases.
In order to avoid traveler's diarrhea, tourists should avoid risky foods such as: dishes prepared and then eaten cold, sea food, fish that is little or badly cooked, raw vegetables, as well as fruits that are not peeled by oneself. Tap water should be boiled, filtered and then drunk from bottles that are correctly sealed.

Since 2005, cholera is rampant throughout the country. Travelers should thus scrupulously follow the basic rules of hygiene. Another virus that is equally dangerous is the Appolo virus that is particularly rife during the month of September. This virus causes a type of conjunctivitis and it is found in all the countries of the region. Travelers should avoid touching their eyes with dirty hands and should wash their hands as often as possible.

For Further Information on Sanitary Conditions
Senegal Travel Advisory (U.S. Gov)
 

Emergency Numbers

SOS Doctor 889 15 15
EMS 824 24 18
Fire brigade 18
Police 17 or 23 23 33 ; in Dakar, (221) 823 71 49/823 25 29
 

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Time Difference and Climate

Time and Time Difference
It is %T:%M %A In Dakar (GMT)
Summer Time Period
The hottest period is from June to October and is also the monsoon season.
 

Map of the Time Zone

Time zone

Type of Climate
There is tropical climate in the south. The average temperature in the south is 27 degrees C, but very often reaches 40 degrees C in summer. The average temperature in the north is 21 degrees C. The monsoon season : from mid-May to mid-September. The dry period : mid-October to mid-March.
Hotel reservation websites
Au Senegal : website for information on Senegal
 

Average Annual Temperatures and Rainfall

Climate

 

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Eating

Food Specialties
The Senegalese cuisine is mainly composed of cereals.
Meat and fish are often served in a curry sauce. At every meal one can find chili and rice.
The national dishes are:
-Thieboudienne: fish with vegetables. In Senegal, this traditional dish is generally prepared with Tiof, a local fish. The hake is the most similar fish to it. Usually, the fish, the rice and the curry are served in separate dishes.
- Chicken Yassa : chicken is cooked in the flavor of lime, garlic, and clove. It is usually served with rice in a service dish which is placed in the center of the table and the dinner guests eat it with their fingers.
Coconut Cake: it is a kind of fritter.
Fish is the main ingredient of the daily diet, chicken, lamb or beef are sometimes included in the meals. Some gnu or wild boar grill can also be found in restaurants menus.
Drinks
Senegal possesses a variety of natural juices:
- The bissap : an infusion made from a decoction of red flowers
- Ginger : ginger decoction with mint and nutmeg
- Tamarind
- The bouye : drink made from monkey bread.
- The ditakh : juice obtained from a fruit similar to the kiwi fruit.
- Palm wine : alcohol extracted from palm trees.
- Honey and nectar of the gods beer
- Mint tea : served everywhere, all the time.
- Beer : Flag and Gazelle
Dietary Restrictions
You will not find any pork because 90% of the population is Muslim.

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Paying

Domestic Currency
CFA Franc BCEAO
ISO Code
XOF
To Obtain Domestic Currency
It is possible to carry one's European check book since certain European establishments accept them. Otherwise, it is possible to change currency in the banks (very high commission! ) and in the foreign exchange centers (lower commission). Traveler's checks are accepted only in banks and certain hotels and are liable to exorbitant commissions.
It is also possible to change currency in certain big hotels.

ATMs are easy available in the tourist areas.

Possible Means of Payment
In Senegal everything is paid in cash.
You can use your credit card in hotels.

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Speaking

Official Language
French
Other Languages Spoken
The Wolof for most people, but there is also the Diola, the Poulaar, the Malinké and the Mandingue. The Wolof is spoken and understood by most of the Senegalese. Dialects are numerous (at least 50, 15 of which are spoken by more than 15,000 people). It is to be noted that since many of the ethnic groups are essentially Muslims, the Wolofs and the Mandingues use the traditional Arab greetings.
Business Language
French and Wolof

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Useful Resources

To Find a Job
Emploi Senegal

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Latest Update: December 2023