Photo Credit: JOHN WESSELS
6 Things To Do On Your Next Trip To Guinea-Bissau
Known for its national parks and extensive wildlife, Guinea-Bissau is a West African country that is also a popular tourist destination.
Located south of the Gambia and Senegal, Guinea-Bissau first declared independence from Portugal on September 24, 1973. However, it wasn’t formally recognized as an independent country until September 10, 1974 — which means it’s possible that many people who are reading this can remember a time when the country was not an independent state.
With its primary languages of Portuguese (about 2 percent of the population speaks it exclusively, while 33 percent of it speak it as a second language) and Creole, its people are as diverse and as welcoming as the land itself. The islands off of the mainland are protected bioreserves, and are as “untouched” as one can imagine a land can be. If there’s a Heaven on Earth, Guinea-Bissau just might be it.
For that reason, and many others, it’s a popular tourist destination. And as travel restrictions begin to ease with the COVID-19 pandemic restrictions, flights to the West African country are beginning to open up, as well.
If this country is on your travel bucket list, we’ve come up with this perfect mix of six things to do on your next trip. Check it out below.
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Bubaque Island is the home of both one of the world’s matriarchal societies and a unique assortment of wildlife. Those who come to Guinea-Bissau often stay at Lodge Les Dauphins (The Dolphin Lodge), which often goes for about 50,000 Guinea Francs per night (more during carnival season).
If that seems like a lot, it actually works out to about $6 USD. You can afford it. Trust us.
The Presidential Palace
Located in the Praça dos Heróis Nacionais, the Presidential Palace is a popular tourist spot that’s great for photographers, as well. But you might want to ask the guards, politely, before taking a close-up photo, as security is suspicious of those who aren’t from the area.
One of the Bijagós Islands located just off the coast of the mainland, this island is home to a national park that was formally established in 2000, and worth checking out.
Fortaleza de Sao Jose da Amura
Fortaleza de Sao Jose da Amura is a Portuguese fort that dates back to the 14th century. The facility offers a two-hour tour for those who are curious about its history.
Dulombi-Boe National Park
Dulombi-Boe National Park is filled with lions, tigers, bears (oh my), and chimpanzees, to name a few. It’s a great opportunity to be up close and personal with this wildlife.
The Dulombi-Boe-Tchétché complex consists of two national parks and three ecological corridors.
Centro Artistico Juvenil
Founded in 1976 by a father and son team who were hoping to give the children of Guinea-Bissau an opportunity for artistic expression, the Centro (as it’s known today) is now both a market and a non-profit organization.
Support can even be made in the United States through the BLAC Foundation!