Colossal cathedral rose following Rome Saint Peter Basilica pattern. It has a capacity for 18.000 faithful (plus 300.000 in the external esplanade) and its interior shows African art and motives.
Most of the money to erect it (150 millions of US Dollars) was donated by the ex Ivory Coast President Félix Houphouët-Boigny (his funeral was celebrated there). Just for you information, when the Pope of Rome (John Paul II) visited it for the blessing, he said that in Africa should not be spent those enormous quantities of money in such huge constructions, but better to have employed that money in alleviate the African penury.
However, I loved it, even from the distance, when arriving to Yamasukro by bus!
You don't have to be a skilled climber to reach the 396 meters high top of "Mount Nienokoue".
You'll only need a good physical condition to walk the rough terrain in front of the mountain.
Mount Nienokoue is located in the Southern part of Tai National Park, which has been a World Heritage Site since 1982.
When you're lucky you'll come across a lot of different forest animals.
Such as: Bongos, Chimpanzees, Forest Buffalos, Snakes, Duikers and I even saw footprints of forest elephants.
When you're on top of the mountain you'll see a sea of green.
So take your time and enjoy the magnificent views.
This is one of the largest unspoiled areas of rainforest remaining in West Africa.
You can make all arrangements at the main office in San Pedro.
Abidjan is the capital of the Ivory Coast, this cosmopolitan has got more than 3.5 million inhabitants from all over the world.
Abidjan can be split up in several districts:
Les Deux Plateaux
The Ebrie lagoon is spread all around the different districts and sometimes you'll have to pass a bridge to reach them.
Abidjan is a relative safe city, but when you're walking around at night??.....
YOU BETTER WATCH OUT!!!
Click the like and you'll find them
Tai National Park near Djiroutou is one of the last remaining areas of virgin rainforest in West Africa.
You'll see trees up to 50m high, with massive trunks and huge supporting roots.
Walking through a primary forest is a unique experience: the towering trees, hanging lianas, swift streams and resident wildlife combine to create a peaceful and, dare we say it, enchanting environment.
Researchers have spent decades studying the park's chimpanzees - who, they've found, have imaginative ways of hunting for monkeys.
Click the link and you'll find them
Grand Bassam is now just a nostalgic relic of its heyday as capital of the French colony.
Grand Bassam is located 45km east of Abidjan and is cut in two by a lagoon.
The narrow strip of land on the sea side, is called Ancien Bassam and the area on the mainland is called Nouveau Bassam.
In Grand Bassam you can find a lot of old colonial buildings most of them are run-down and decrepit but some of the finer buildings have been maintained as tourist attractions.
Click the link and you'll find them.
When you're in the capital of the Ivory Coast you should see the skyline, you'll think this is a Western city when you see the skyscrapers and big buildings.
The roof of the cathedral is the ideal place for a perfect view.
San Pedro harbour is the second largest harbour in the Ivory Coast and located in the South-West of the Ivory Coast.
When you're walking from the city centre to the Tai National Park Headquarters you'll come across the 2000 ha. big harbour area.
Here they ship containers, cacao, coffee and timber.
They also have a fishing harbour and you should ask the permition to visit the area.
The basilica of Our Lady of Peace in Yamoussoukro, the "other" capital of Cote d'Ivoire, is worth a visit. Guiness says it's the largest Christian church in the world. While this is not universally accepted, it is quite large ... and quite strange, sitting in the middle of the Ivory Coast as it does.
In the north, the landscapes are completely different. No more rainforests, but dry lands. We stopped in Detikaha village, a small village on the road between Bouake and the Mali border. It was a very poor village. The local people invited us friendly in their village, showed us around and invited us to eat and drink with them.
Soubre is a small city in the eastern part of Cote d'Ivoire, situated along the Sassandra river. The town is not mentioned in the Lonely Planet and there aren't really any attractions, though in an African town it is always interesting just to see the people. We stayed in hotel Nawa, run by a Korean; it was the most clean hotel where we stayed during our West Africa trip. The airco was working, there was warm water and television.
This is Laketo village, between Divo and Sassandra. We had to wait here for a few hours for the next bush taxi. The local people were very interested to see the pictures in my West Africa Lonely Planet guide.
Tabou is a town in the far south-west of Cote d'Ivoire, located at the Atlantic coast. It is a place of fishermen. The sea here was too dangerous to swim; the beach was too steep.
From Tabou, we wanted to enter Liberia but we didn't succeed. We stayed in hotel La Cotiere, another low-cost place with huts. Airco and water was not working. But the attractive terrace, the cold beers and the friendly people working there made us enjoy the evening.
The interior of southern Cote d'Ivoire is characterised by rainforests. We went from Divo, an interior town, to Sassandra at the coast and came across lots of small villages, unseen by tourists. Travelling here means sitting, packed together, in a bush taxi, next to a woman with two chickens on her lap.
Sassandra is an attractive place to stay; it is located at the delta of the Sassandra river, next to the sea. The thing to do here is to make a trip with a pirogue, searching for hippo's. We didn't find any, just heard one. But in the mangrove trees there were monkeys swinging around and many beautiful birds.
We stayed in hotel Chez Tantie Youyou; a nice place with a terrace next to the water and huts between lots of coconut trees.
Abidjan is the biggest and most important city of Cote d'Ivoire, though not the official capital. We stayed in hotel Konankro, a cheap hotel in the Marcory area. On the other side of the street, there was a pleasant bar where we drank a few Ivorian beers.
I just stayed half a day in this city, I met some nice and friendly people which contrasts with the bad reputation of the city.
Just finished first of 2 weeks here, pleasantly surprised by quality of hotel generally. Room is...more
"Hôtel Ivoire" in the upper class Cocody residential district west of Le Plateau is the best hotel...more
Road D `Assinie Maffia, Assinie, Abidjan, KM3, Cote d'Ivoire
Satisfaction: Very Good
Good for: Business