Senegal Off The Beaten Path

  • Adansonia digitata / Affenbrotbaum / Baobab
    Adansonia digitata / Affenbrotbaum /...
    by globetrott
  • Off The Beaten Path
    by globetrott
  • Off The Beaten Path
    by globetrott

Senegal Off The Beaten Path

  • The Sahel

    The Sahel, which is derived from the Arabic word sahil, meaning "shore" or "border," is a dry savanna zone between the Sahara Desert in the north and wetter savanna zones in the south. It stretches from the Atlantic Ocean in the west to the Horn of Africa in the east. All of northern Senegal is within the Sahel, and aside from scattered acacia...

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  • On the way to Mali

    on the way to Mali we passed through some rather wild country! We saw monkeys, huge termite piles, gigantic baobab trees - it was fascinating!

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  • The Sine-Saloum Delta.

    The Sine-Saloum delta is a vast labyrint of creeks and islands wich you can find in Western part of Senegal just above the Gambia.The best way to explore the area is by boot and on foot.This is the place to practise your fishing or to spot birds, monkeys or reptiles.

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  • Niokolo Koba National Park

    Here you find a list of(some of) the mammals you can find in Niokolo Koba National Park.Red colobusGiant elandRoan antelopeWild dogBuffaloLionPatas monkeyHyenaLeopardHippopotamusGreen monkeyChimpanzeeand so on

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  • Niokolo Koba National Park

    Niokolo Koba National Park is one of the biggest national parks located in West Africa, if not the biggest. Niokolo Koba is located in the South-east of Senegal along the banks of the Gambia River and has a surface of 9130 square km. In the south the park integrates the Park of Badiar and the listed Forest of Ndama located in Guinea. The gallery...

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  • A beautiful area...

    Palmarin is great. Here you can relax on the beach and hardley see another person (apart from the people that you are staying with of course...) It is a great place to stay for a day or two, it is also very close to the larger town of Djifee.

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  • The river Gambia

    The rive Gambia runs from the atlantic through the heart of Senegal supporting settlements and wildlife such as hippos and crocodiles.

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  • Gifts, gifts...

    Next follow the gifts to me and Isabelle, we both get a real African dress. Wilfried gets a sheep and Dirk a violin.And finally Isabelle, Wilfried and I are granted honoured citizenship of Bantancountou.I have never been so happy with any other diploma before then the one that is offered me now.

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  • Reflection on main priorities

    Close to 2:30 pm a big pan is brought into our cabin. Rice, onion and chicken; a fork.Oh great! We are so hungry!The brother of Seckou is joining us as he has a stomach disease and is dismissed to practice the Ramadam. Children and elderly also are allowed to this exceptionA little later after lunch, we will have our interview with Seckou Kande.We...

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  • Farewell to Bantancountou

    The meeting of the village chiefs took two hours. We are now packing or stuff and people wave goodbye as we drive away.Wilfried shares with us that the chief told him that he had have many visitors in his village already, but that “les Belges” for sure will leave an empty space when they are gone

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  • Madame le maire parle.

    And then, it is my turn. “Madame le maire”, Madame the mayor, is granted speech.I read out loud the French text I had prepared during the siesta. I start to thank them warm hearted for the hospitality, for the food and the hotel room they gave me. I describe the conversations we had. Séckou Kandé is moved and he nods his head in affirmation about...

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  • A conference for all

    In the main time the “public” grows: around the circle of men, a second circle is growing of women and children who very attentive are listening to the discourse.What really is frapping is how the interpreter seems to say 5 times as much as the original sentences. A thought is narrated in many diverse manners. “This way thoughts will stick into...

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  • The everlasting agenda continues

    We listen how the local NGO represent explains in Woloff (the local language) why the Belgians came to visit. Each time this is followed by a translation in French. We learn that they want help to start growing new crops instead of peanuts. The Imam talks about “the road, already 100 years they have been asking for a descent street.There are some...

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  • A conference without papers ...

    ... but with an everlasting agenda.Around 4 pm we are all seated underneath the central tree.The chiefs are arriving one by one, taking in their place; one of them is the Imam.Even the local governmental representative is present.Wilfried arrives around half past four and is accompanied by the representative of the local NGO.Then the farewell...

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  • On responsibility and famine

    Responsibility. We can read the pain in his eyes that at the same time, this pain keeps him going on, motivates him.He cannot bear the thought that his people will endure famine (Spring 2003).Le faim c'est la limite! Hunger is the very limit!There is too much theory on the radio. First you have to succeed in getting to know the concrete situation...

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  • Party? No party.

    During noon I pass by the hut of the Chief. The musicians have arrived. They will bring some ambiance during the “fare well party” of “les Belges”. There will be some dancing. We will be surprised what they have waiting for us.We take a little rest in our room. The frog is there to witness me writing a goodbye speech, just in case it should be...

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  • The reality shock.

    Then we go for a walk into the “hood: fenced places that count each 4 to 5 huts.It is amazing to me how little these people possess: a hut; a bed with a very thin mattress; some nice cloths; foot slippers and a little bit of furniture and things. Women and kids are walking around.Each time, in every hut, you come across an elderly person, sitting...

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  • Tuesday 19th November 2002

    The present morning ritual looks very similar to the one we had yesterday. The only difference is that Isabelle is getting more used and feeling more comfortable with that hole in the bathroom.There are neither more melons nor mandarins at breakfast.This morning the brother of the Chief will take us along. First we visit the paddy fields or rice...

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  • Rice with onion, onion with rice

    After the interview we spend some time with the kids in the village.Wilfried hands us some water, he takes Seckou and Isabelle separate for a talk.The Flemish agricultural techniques (field water pump; milking) have triggered the attention and imagination of the local farmers very much.It is agreed that when S?ckou visits Belgium soon, he has to...

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  • Of babies and TV's

    Dirk takes a picture of me, a heart-melted Ingrid with a little black baby on my arm and teases me I will get some "critics about this picture at home. Suddenly I see men and women all entering a hut a bit further away and I head towards the place to see what is happening.Inside I notice a small television with an unstable monitor, operating on...

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  • Villages in Mali border

    On the eastern part of senegal all the way down on the Senegal river bank begining in Matam, you have hundreds of little villages like this one on the picture that will make you think and be sure you are in Africa. These are very poor and lonely villages where people dont have access to basic things in life. I stoped in some of the villages and...

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  • The Gambia

    If you go to Senegal and reach the Niokolo Koba, why not going to The Gambia. Its quite an experience this country and it will make you enjoy it very much. The Gambia is very very different from Senegal, they speak english here and in Senegal french... architecture and all was influenced by british not by french so expect different different.The...

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  • Langue de Barbarie beach ship wreck

    Langue de Barbarie beach ship wreck is something very interesting to see. All around West FArican coast you have hundreds of old ships like this on the beach or on the coast forgotten. If you like this please visit my Cansado page in Mauritania for an incredible 50 ships on the coast.In St. Louis just pass to the Island and agina pass to the Langue...

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  • View of Dakar from Goree Island

    View of Dakar from Goree Island is amazing and you will love each single moment of the view. Go to the highest point on the island and look Dakar on the horizont. Nice.If the weather is cloudy you will miss it though.

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  • Parc National de Niokolo Koba

    Parc National de Niokolo Koba is one of the few places in Senegal that belong to the UNESCO programme for World Heritage.The park is open during the dry season and this is the best time to visit.This Parc is a bit off the beaten path cos is a bit farway from big cities like Dakar (800km) and you need wither to get a long trip from public transport...

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  • Playing with the kids

    We walk back to the village, we rest a bit or we play with the kids. Ringelo-rangelo *, a game with my wedding ring, is very much liked by them. Olleke-bolleke-riebesolleke **(another game with the hands) with one white thumb between a lots of little black little thumbs, is even granted more success.*Ringelo-rangelo, one person holds his ring in...

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  • Saved by the call of the rooster.

    Around 10 pm it seems to be getting late even for night-butterflies-on-duty. I have no other option then to go to bed, awake as an early chicken on its wooden stick in the morning.I can?t catch sleep and I can hear, how the animals come alive, once the people are sleeping.A dog is barking without pause, donkeys are noisy. I hear an unidentified...

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  • The burial

    We see colourful dressed women, sitting very quiet and still, now and then weeping behind their shawls that they hold in front of their faces.Before dawn the men will bury the deceased.The women remain in the village.

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  • Along the road

    The people. Little groups along the road. They sit next to each other or they walk around, all ages, I spot people and animals.Especially the women and the girls are eye catching: how beautiful they are, well maintained from top till toe, proud and gracious, colourful dresses accentuating their nice female shapes.The informal market is profitable:...

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  • Saturday evening, 16th of November 2002

    Saturday evening, 16th November 2002, just before midnightSo this is it! The first impressions every one talks about: my initiation; the big confrontation; the ever-repeated question: if you experienced a cultural shock?While I am writing this, the hotel room is neat, the food I had a minute ago was terrific, and the service extremely friendly. The...

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  • Monday 18th November 2002.

    Monday 18th November 2002.Isabelle and me are pulling water up from the well and with the plastic cans we head towards our bathroom: a fenced place in open air with an opening in front.After washing ourselves we walk outside.At a little bench in the first room of our hut, several kids are sitting neatly next to each other.They are ready to go to...

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  • A visit to the local school

    After the visit to the cows, a visit to the school is on the schedule.The classrooms are full; on the sandy playground about 30 young students are sitting neatly on a row. What a discipline, I am thinking. The chief gives a hint that discipline might come with lesser soft means if needed.Dirk is taking pictures of the bunch of kids and is welcomed...

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  • A story about cows and lack of water

    In the morning, Seckou takes us out on a guided tour. First we go see the cows, as Isabelle had announced she would like to milk them. It is a hard job because it is so slippery due to the fact that the cows are still feeding a calf. Me too, I give the milking a try and, being a novice at it, I manage pretty well but …only a scarcely amount of milk...

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  • Strolling along from 1 pm on

    Strolling along from 1 pm onYou can definitive notice it is Ramadan. The majority of the Senegalese population is Islamite.No eating between dawn and sunset gives you no other option then linger around from 1 pm on when the heat hits the hardest. "Without the Ramadan, people would be more dynamic," explains Wilried, almost apologizing. But around...

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  • Conversations in the moonlight,...

    Seckou tells me that there are plans to bring electricity to the city very soon. A thought escapes my lips: tu gagneras la lumiere, mais tu vas perdre la nuit”, you will gain the light but lose the night.I explain them our situation: there is so much artificial light at night that we barely can see any stars and that the cocks are so confused about...

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  • Conversations in the moonlight

    Conversations in the moonlightIn the village there is no electricity, so no light either. Pocket lights are out of question because they would attract too many insects. The moonlight dictates when it is bedtime.Isabelle and Dirk go to bed around 9 pm. For me, 9 pm is usually the hour of many conferences and meetings in Mortsel. I stay up a little...

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  • Talking is communicate is learning

    We talk...We talk first inside and later on outside in front of our hut, in the African moonlight. We talk about death and decease how we deal with it, our arrangements, they start sometimes even a week before the burial and last often till years later when we still are putting flowers on the graves. Here in Senegal, they deal with their emotions...

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  • When the day has ended

    After the ceremony, normal life sets in again. We watch how women and children are pulling water out of a well, men’s ritual washing of hands and feet before they kneel down on their little carpet for a prayer.Close to 7:30 pm a wife approaches with a huge pan. We all eat together out of the pan: the chief, his brothers. We are served noodles and...

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  • The funeral

    We put our luggage in our “rooms”. It is the house of the Chief’s brother who will have to take satisfaction with only one room for his family for the time of our staying.After getting rid of our things, we go to the village central spot to join into the mourning ritual. Isabelle and I are seated amongst the women; Dirk and Wilfried take place...

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  • The terrible road

    A trip is planned to Kolda this morning. I decide not to participate; rather I want to write a speech, just in case I am expected to hold one. Dirk, Isabelle and Wilfried flee away, leaving me behind for two hours peaceful rest and solitude.In the afternoon we drive to Bantancountou. After a few miles on hard macadam we turn left. Here we discover...

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  • Sunday 17th November 2002

    Close to 8 am I join my travel companions, Dirk; Isabelle and Wilfried, for breakfast at the balcony of the hotel. While we are already fantasizing about the village we planned to visit today, a member of the local NGO suddenly appears. He has very bad news about Bantancountou. We will not receive the prepared and planned festivity welcome, because...

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  • The BIG escape to the cities and the...

    It is very dark outside and we are still driving the car. I ask Wilfried some questions based upon my impressions of the past hours. The migration to the cities is really a time bomb, he explains. The cities can?t cope with this tremendous growth. They turn into poor areas, are a fruitful bottom for illegal commercialising and in the end create...

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  • Diary of Ingrid, 15th November

    Piles of peanuts: globalization in a nutshell.Friday, 15th November 2002.We meet each other for the first time at the airport at Zaventem. I acquaint myself to Isabelle Scholliers, a 39-year-old female farmer from the area of Aalter. Together with her husband she runs a cattle farm of milk cows. The second to meet is Dirk Musschoot, a 41-year-old...

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  • Ecoute les femmes, Wilfried

    Listen to the women, WilfriedThe house of Wilfried and his wife - Catherine, a very dynamical woman, gay, a great host and great conversations is located close to the school where their children - already left the house - used to follow courses.We are each offered a neat room, but not much time: it is the 15th of November and thus we are invited at...

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  • Saturday 16th November 2002

    Focusing on what comes next: a terrible trip by car from Dakar to Kolda. At Kolda we will stay at a hotel from where we can depart direction Bantancountou, the village we will visit from Sunday till Tuesday. Tuesday evening back to the hotel at Kolda, Wednesday visit some projects in the neighborhood and Thursday heading back to Dakar

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Senegal Hotels

See all 33 Hotels in Senegal
  • Domaine de Nianing

    BP 1810, Dakar, Senegal

    Satisfaction: Excellent

    Good for: Business

  • Tama Lodge

    Avenue de la mer, Plage des cocotiers - BP 1524, Mbour, BP 1524, Senegal

    Satisfaction: Excellent

    Good for: Couples

  • Terrou-Bi

    Boulevard Martin Luther King, Dakar, 1179, Senegal

    Satisfaction: Excellent

    Good for: Families

    Hotel Class 5 out of 5 stars

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Senegal Off The Beaten Path

Reviews and photos of Senegal off the beaten path posted by real travelers and locals. The best tips for Senegal sightseeing.
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