3 Best Sights in Senegal

Il de Gorée

Just 3 km (2 miles) off Dakar, this UNESCO World Heritage Site holds painful reminders of the slave trade. Prepare for an emotional experience. The island, in addition to other areas in Senegal, served as a human warehouse and the large La Maison des Esclaves testifies to how men and women were treated as commercial goods. Also see Fort d'Estrees, built by the French in the mid-1800s. The Historical Museum of Senegal at the fort houses collections tracing Senegal history from ancient times to the present. Ferries make the 20-minute journey to Ile de Gorée throughout the day, every day, from the port at the southeastern tip of the Dakar peninsula.

Dakar, Senegal
Sight Details
Rate Includes: Ferries run weekdays 6:15 am–10:30 pm (11:30 Fri.), Sat. 6:15 am–12:30 am, Sun. 7 am–11:30 pm

Le Monument de la Renaissance Africaine

Larger than America’s Statue of Liberty, the 160-foot tall African Renaissance Monument is an imposing tribute to freedom. Senegalese architect Pierre Goudiaby designed the family of three—father, mother and infant—emerging from a mountain. Workers employed by a North Korean firm spent four years constructing the statue, finally completed in 2010. Take an elevator to the top for a full view of Dakar and surrounding areas. Hiring a knowledgeable guide is the best way to get a full understanding of the monument.

Av. Cheikh Anta Diop, Dakar, Senegal
Sight Details
Rate Includes: 19783 Senegalese francs for elevator

Le Village des Tortues

Dozens of turtles, large and small, lumber about this section of the small Réserve Botanique de Noflaye, 35 km (22 miles) east of Dakar. The 11 species represent marine, freshwater, and land turtles, and all are threatened, including the giant Centrochelys, which can weigh up to 100 pounds. The population is managed by SOPTOM, a French association for the protection of turtles. Researchers who live on-site study the animals and work to release young turtles into the wild.

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