What you need to know before you go
How to get here
You can fly to Banjul, the capital of The Gambia or to Dakar and then Dakar-Ziguinshor (Air Senegal, Prime Go). During tourist season December – April you can choose between several flight companies: Brussels Airlines, Air France, Lufthansa, Vueling or Tap Portugal, to name a few.
If you book in good time, you get quite the ok price. An advice for all bookings, cheque out the waiting hours or the time zone, sometimes you will arrive on a new date.
Living and eating in Senegal is relatively inexpensive. However, fuel is not cheap in Senegal either. Therefore the taxi drive from or to the airport is 77 euros/50 000 senegal CFA. This is per trip, not per person. So it is a good idea to be more than one person when you travel. We meet you at the airport, just let us know your landing time.
Nb! The border between the Gambia and Senegal closes at around 19 hrs. If you need an overnight stay on arrival, please let us know and we will help arranging that for you.
It is generally very safe to travel in Senegal as a tourist. The country has had peace and stability in the political climate for many years, although there is still a fraction connected with the question of south and north Senegal with activity on rare occasions at the borders to Guinea or Mali. But our area is very peaceful. People are open, friendly and often wishing to talk. With a normal sensible attitude as a tourist, you will not have trouble regarding theft or robbery.
Visa, passport, travel insurance
Most European countries do not need a visa for Senegal. For Norwegian citizens visa is at the moment required. You need to be prepared for an overnight stop in Banjul to sort out the visa in the Gambia. If you arrive a Friday, you may not sort out the visa until the Monday, so choose your arrival date carefully. We help to book your overnight stay, if you would like us to.
In Dakar, you receive the visa at the airport on arrival.
Visa is not required for EU citizens. However, you need your passport readily available as we stop at several cheque points travelling from The Gambia to Senegal. It is also advisable to bring a few photocopies of the first pages of your passport. Should you loose your passport it is then much easier when needing to apply for a temporary visa.
Make sure you have a valid travel insurance, as the guesthouses are not liable for illness, theft or changes from the Flight companies.
Vaccine against yellow fever is a requirement.
Certain vaccines are recommended, but here you have a right to choose:
• Hepatite A og B
• A boost of the tetanus vaccine/stivkrampe
• Drinking vaccine protecting against cholera. Or you strengthen your microbiota by an extra intake of probiotica a month before travelling.
Contact your closest travel clinic/www.reiseklinikken.no and be sure to be in good time. You need a couple of months.
NB! Make sure to bring the yellow card, vaccine documentation, with you.
Malaria medication is necessary, although in the season November – May there are few mosquitoes. But it is recommended not to take any chances.
All our rooms are provided with mosquito nets.
The valuta in Senegal is senegales franc, CFA. At the moment 1.000 CFA is about 15 Norwegian kroner, just to mention that.
NB! It is Euro which is the foreign valuta in Senegal! Do not bring dollars. The exchange rate for Euro is stable, 100 Euros to 65 000 CFA. We recommend that you bring sufficient. It is not easy to withdraw more Euros, that involves a 2 hr drive to the regional capital.
It is easy to exchange Euro for CFA in many shops in the area. You may pay for the stay in advance, as to not carry too much valuta with you. Just contact us to receive the necessary information.
If you have need of special things, do bring it along, as it may not be possible to purchase locally here in the senegales countryside. Do inform us if you should require a vegetarian or gluten free diet. Make sure to bring what essentials you need for a comfortable stay.
Bring a good torchlight and reading light.
The country and the climate
Senegal is a West African country with a coastline of 600 km towards the Atlantic ocean. The guesthouses Sesi Boubak og Sempe Thiékét is situated in the Casamance, a lush and fruitful area in the southern part of Senegal. If you have a look at the map, you will see The Gambia meandering far into the country and dividing it into the north and south of Senegal. The country has about 14 mill inhabitants and many ethnical groups and languages, and wolof is the uniting language. Senegal is also a French speaking country, but due to the close links to the Gambia many people will also speak some English. Islam is the main religion since early 12th century, but there are no conflicts between Islam, Christianity or other religions. Here is peaceful and friendly neighbourly, children attend the same schools and people participate in each others celebrations.
The Casamance is agricultural land, growing rice, beans, fruit and vegetables. Fishing plays an important role, as do cultivation of ground nuts and cashew nuts and lately, a growing tourism.
The capital of Dakar north in Senegal is also worth while a visit, if you have time to spare. Speak to us and we can tell you a few places of interest.
Senegal has a sub-tropic climate, in the south in our region tending more towards the tropical climate and in the north more dry desert. The raining season lasts from June through October, but the rainfalls vary a lot. In June and July just a heavy rain for some hours, making everything fresh and clean, to rainfalls that last a day or more later in the season. The temperatures are generally very stable and pleasant, 24-30 degrees is normal. But the temperatures can also rise and fall. December and January offers cool nights and the mornings can be a bit fresh, so a fleece jacket is generally a good idea to pack.