An extremely popular destination on the African continent, Senegal is a paradise for travelers looking for a variety of natural habitats and landscapes. The country features milder climate, generally friendly attitude to foreigners, and lots of attractions to visit.
Senegal is one of the most visited countries in West Africa. The country is well known for its natural beauty and diverse natural environment. Senegal is famous for mixing different climatic zones, the luxury ocean beaches and colorful local residents. The green southern regions are full of picturesque natural objects, while arid north is the gateway to the mysterious world of the Sahara. The interior of the country is very attractive and distinguished by its original culture, traditions, music and famous Senegalese fabrics, bearing the imprint of the historical heritage of various ethnic groups. |
The country's capital, Dakar, is a major shopping and tourist center in West Africa. It also has quite smooth and cool climate. Dakar is a big and modern city, a little like most of the capitals of the region, and at the same time bearing the indelible flavor of the local culture. The central part of the city, which lies on a small hill, is limited by three main streets and is full of colorful shops, clubs and restaurants. Here one will find the traditional for the region Medina, the Independence Square, the City Hall, the business district, a marina and a variety of institutions. This scenic area is an excellent place for hiking. The houses are all planned similarly, with a tree located in the center of the yard.
The main attractions of the capital are the Art Museum, the Maritime Museum, and the History Museum. Some of them have excellent collections of masks, musical instruments and sculptures from all over the West African region. The snow-white Presidential Palace, built in 1906, is surrounded by a beautiful park. Not far from the city center, there stands the Mosca Grande, which is illuminated at night and can be visited by Muslims only. In the capital, there are several major markets. Surrounded by beautiful colonial houses, a small but affluent Kermel market is located in the port area and specializes in flowers and handicrafts.
North-west of Dakar, one will find the picturesque islands of Ngor, Joffe and La Madeleine, which have excellent conditions for marine recreation. Nearby, on the shores of the Gulf of Hann, there is a Zoo.
One of the main attractions of Senegal is Retba Lake, located not far from Dakar. Its unique feature is the enormous content of various salts in water, and their concentration is 10 times higher than in the waters of the ocean. Special halophytic bacteria, the only inhabitants of these waters, give the lake a characteristic pink color. The salt is actively produced by the local residents to be exported. Near the lake, there is a turtle sanctuary.
The island of Ile de Gori is famous for its houses of colonial architecture, magnificent sandy beach of Le Castel, the fine Historical Museum at Fort Destry that can rival the richness of the Maritime Museum in Dakar, the Museum of Women and the excellent tourist market near the pier, almost entirely focused on servicing guests from other countries. A special pride of the city is a unique museum of African culture and folklore, restored on the site of the slave market. In the 1970-s the island was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Contact your Senegal tour operator to request an excursion around this beautiful island.
One of the most interesting cities on the continent and the oldest city in the country is St. Louis. It occupies a strategically important position near the mouth of the Senegal River, between the mainland and the peninsula de Lange Burbury. Saint-Louis once was the fastest growing port of the continent and an important commercial center in the region. The historic part of the island was included in the UNESCO World Heritage List. Tourists must visit the local Governor's Palace.
To the east of the capital, there lies the city of Thies, the second largest city in the country. This is an area where people come with their families to relax in the shady groves or to visit small restaurants and cafes in the city's main street. Senegalese call this city 'our Paris' and are very proud of the located here Senegalese Decorative Art Factory, famous for its decorative fabrics and tapestries, many of which are really masterpieces of art and cost hundreds of U.S. dollars in other parts of the world.
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