Have you been to Senegal?

Mar 19th, 2007, 09:37 AM
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Have you been to Senegal?

I read an article on Senegal in the NYTimes travel section today. I had never really considered a visit there....but now that I have seen some interesting places to visit and stay in Senegal, I'm considering a stopover there on the way to SA. Has anyone done this? Can you get a taste of Senegal with a 3 day visit?

Here is the article and one of the lodges mentioned, if anyone is interested:


cruisinred is offline  
Mar 19th, 2007, 05:34 PM
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We went to Senegal about seven years ago as part of an overland ttrip to Timbuktu, so my information may be rather out of date.

West Africa is so fabulous and can be rather challenging. We were only in Dakar a couple of days and I remeber the color, the wonderful markets and music and overall the frantic pace of the place. It's not a destination for eveyone. IT's a city where you need to keep your wits about you and look around constantly because there's alot of theft.

Dakar airport remains the WORST airport experience of my life, and I have visited more the 50 countries, many of them developing. Hundreds of people, touts and taxi driver crowding around us when we arrived...total chaos.

If we hadn't keot our wits we would have lots most of our luggage, it's a long story involving a very aggresive cab driver, an unexplained change of cabs in a dark parking lot and finally a screaming match over the rate at the hotel - welcome to Senegal!

I don't know anything about the lodges you mentioned. We would definetely be interested in revisiting Senegal or seeing more of West Africa but personally we prefered Ghana or Mali.
welltraveledbrit is offline  
Mar 20th, 2007, 07:31 AM
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Thanks for your comments on Sengal. I know you have been a lot of places, so that is really saying something about the airport!

Mali and Ghana are definitely on my list for a longer west africa trip. I was just considering a stop in Senegal as the SAA flight from NYC stops there. (As long as I'm in the neighborhood....)

Didn't you go to Laos and Vietnam last summer? Did I miss your trip report on the Asia board?

Thanks again,
cruisinred is offline  
Mar 20th, 2007, 08:10 AM
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You're right you did miss my report, I wasn't madly enthusiastic about Vietnam and so I found it hard to write the report. NOt sure if that's a good enough excuse. I will however write a report on my upcoming trip to Morocco when I return!
welltraveledbrit is offline  
Mar 20th, 2007, 12:12 PM
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I traveled to Senegal about 5 years ago, so my info is dated also. I stayed 10 days and really enjoyed my visit, although it was rainy season and I didnt get to see everything I would have liked.

I took a look at the Niassam lodge you listed, it is not far from M'Bour where I stayed a few days. I did a trip out into the delta there which was fun. There is also a wildlife park close by that is supposed to be interesting, i dont remember the name, and I didn't get to it due to the rains.

I also echo the comments about the airport, my worst airport experience as well, even worse than Delhi. The rates for the taxis are clearly posted but I still got into a screaming match with the taxi guys until they would give me the correct price.

Anyways, if you are interested i have my trip report and photos posted here :


Good luck with whatever you decide to do!
kellyee21 is offline  
Mar 20th, 2007, 12:50 PM
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We were in Senegal and Mali recently. After Mali Senegal appeared very prosperous. We did not have much trouble at the airport--there were a lot of people milling around outside but we had hired a guide to meet us and take us to the hotel and therefore had no problems. We spent 4 days in Senegal and traveled north to the town of St. Louis--seeing the Touba Mosque and Pink lake on the way. I saw that article in the NYT about the lodges and they sounded wonderful. You can get just a taste of Senegal in 3 days but it would be worth it. In Dakar I would recommend taking the ferry to Gori Island and the door of no return. We fell in love with the music of both Mali and Senegal and would suggest finding some clubs or concerts. Definitely stop in Senegal.
cece is offline  
Mar 20th, 2007, 12:58 PM
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Thanks very much for sharing your experiences. I really enjoyed your photos.
cruisinred is offline  
Mar 22nd, 2007, 10:42 AM
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Definitely spend a few days in Senegal - no question!!
I was there about 2 yrs ago and it is fantastic... if you like African music, it can't be missed!! Lots of culture, and there is something to be said about French Africa.
ohmama is offline  
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