Dakar the capital of Senegal is a beautiful African city. The streets are clean, the people are friendly and at night the city dazzles with brilliant lights. Tourism is booming in Dakar and being a coastal city with beautiful beaches, it is bound to hold many tourist activities. The city is home to a couple of impressive structures and monuments which dot the landscape.
Dakar is a city on the rise. It is a beehive of activities for travelers coming in from Europe, North America and other parts of Africa. The hospitality industry in the city is well developed and prepared to meet the demands of numerous patrons. As a city that hardly sleeps what with its exciting nightlife, it’s not strange to see Dakar residents heading out long after midnight.
The climate is typical of West African tropical weather – that means lots of sunshine. However, weather temperature in Dakar could drop to as low as 17 degrees centigrade especially at night and early morning, between the months of January and April.
The people are friendly, but there is a growing band of youth who hassle and scam people. It is easy to fall for their schemes, especially if you don’t speak the main languages of French or Wolof. Many come offering to show you around and try to pull a fast one. However, do not be perturbed as a visit to this beautiful African city will be definitely worth your while.
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Senegal’s capital city lies on the Atlantic Coast. It is a beautiful city with clean streets, friendly people and a couple of impressive structures and monuments dotting the landscape. La Monument de la Renaissance Africaine is an impressive must see sculptural piece composed of a man holding aloft an infant in one hand, while the other hand is around a woman\'s waist. It stands at a height of 49 meters (160ft) on a 100 meter hill in Ouakam suburb. Lake Retba, popularly known as Pink Lake or Lac Rose is a salt lake where the locals collect salt from its bottom. The most fascinating thing about the lake is the unusual pink color which gave it its popular name. It is under consideration by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. Palais Présidentiel; a massive colonial-style building dating back to 1907 was built for the colonial Governor-General of French West Africa. Surrounded by beautiful gardens, the white neo-classical structure is now the official residence of the president. It is guarded by red-clad palace guards and entry is not allowed into the property but photographs of the exterior are allowed. Another place worthy of your visit is the Grande Mosquée de Dakar, it’s regarded as one of the most important religious edifices in the capital city. Cathédrale Notre Dame des Victoires was built in 1930 and commissioned six years later as La Cathédrale du Souvenir African as a tribute to African soldiers. It’s an impressive all-white cathedral and has the following presently on the entrance: “To the Virgin Mary, Mother of Jesus the Savior.” Maison des Esclaves or (House of Slaves) is another must-see on your visit to Dakar. It was built as a memorial to the transatlantic slave trade. It is an integral part of Gorée Island which was designated a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1978.
Dakar is a cosmopolitan city on the move. There is a wide range of eating options from fast food outlets to nice bistros and classy restaurants. The menu ranges from local delicacies to intercontinental delights. Being a coastal city, you’ll expect fish to play a major part in the dishes – and it certainly does. But so does chicken and meat too in most of the local dishes with rice. Peanuts, a major export of the country also features in local dishes. The French influence is visibly noticeable when menu is served with baguette. For drinks, there are several local brews and juice like bissap, gingenbre and bouye. Coffee is equally a pastime. However, you can always find your choice of packed juice, soda drinks, exquisite wines and spirits if the local stuff is not up your alley.