IVORY COAST TRAVEL GUIDE
Côte d'Ivoire is a West African country with beach resorts, rain-forests and a French-colonial legacy. Abidjan, on the Atlantic coast, is the country’s major urban centre. Côte d'Ivoire's claim to fame is not simply its shiny and cosmopolitan commercial capital Abidjan or its thousands of miles of smooth roads (quite out of place in this part of Africa!), but its rich tradition of art and music, as excitingly diverse as its people. For years, Cote d’Ivoire basked in the reputation of being one of Africa’s success stories, with impressive economic growth and stable political set-up.
In recent years, following the death of one of the longest-ruling Presidents of the world and the ensuing confusion, this reputation has suffered somewhat, and today, the incidence of urban poverty and social problems like HIV are disturbingly high; however, the Ivory Coast’s people continue to fascinate with their culture and craftsmanship and the countryside remains beautiful.
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IVORY COAST QUICK FACTS
- Capital: Yamoussoukro; Abidjan remains administrative centre (moved from Grand-Bassam in 1893 then Bingerville in 1933)
- Currency: CFA franc (XOF)
- Area: 322,460 km²
- Population: 25,07 million (2018)
- Language: French (official), 60 native dialects with Dioula the most widely spoken
- Religion: Christian 20-30%, Muslim 35-40%, indigenous 25-40%
- Electricity: 220V/50Hz (European plug)
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IVORY COAST PUBLIC HOLIDAYS
- 1 May, Labor Day
- 7 August, Independence Day
- 15 August, Assumption
- 1 November, All Saints Day
- 15 November, Peace Day
- 7 December, Félix Houphouët-Boigny Remembrance Day
Also, Easter Monday, Ascension Day, Whit Monday, the day after Maulid an-Nabi, the day after Laylat al-Qadr, Eid al-Fitr, and Eid al-Adha.
Holidays that fall on a Sunday are often observed on the Monday following.
IVORY COAST WEATHER SYNOPSIS
Cote d’Ivoire is located in the transition zone between the humid equatorial climate that characterises the southern part of the country, and the dry tropical climate of the north. The country generally experiences a rainy season from June to October and average annual temperatures range from 24-28°C. In the north, the rainy season occurs from June to October, while the dry season is between the months of November to May. The southern region of Cote d’Ivoire generally experiences four seasons. May to June brings heavy rains while shorter rains occur during August and September. A shorter dry season occurs during October to November and the main dry season occurring from December to April.
SPORT & ACTIVITIES
HIKING & CYCLING IN IVORY COAST
November through March is the best time for outdoor activities in the Ivory Coast. During this time, temperatures are bearable, it's the dry season, parks are abloom and wildlife is abundant.
BEACH OPTIONS IN IVORY COAST
The Ivory Coast is home to some of the world's most exotic beaches, such as Monogaga Beach, Sassandra Beach and Assini Beach. The dry season is from December to April.
SURFING IN IVORY COAST
Don't expect big and clean world class waves in the Ivory Coast, but there is swell almost year round. November to April is generally the best time for surfing in Ivory Coast although the biggest swells hit from April to September. You can check the followign surf spots: Assini, Monogaga, Grand-Lahou, Sassandra & Dabego.
KITESURF IN IVORY COAST
Although not a kitesurfing destination, theoretically you can kitesurf at Grand Bassam in the Ivory Coast. There are small waves and a limited launching area.
HEALTH RISKS IN IVORY COAST
Be aware of possible health risks in
Yellow fever - The yellow fever virus is found in tropical and subtropical areas of Africa and South America. The virus is spread to people by the bite of an infected mosquito. There is no medicine to treat or cure an infection. To prevent getting sick from yellow fever, use insect repellent, wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants, and get vaccinated.
Zika Virus - Zika is spread mostly by the bite of an infected Aedes species mosquito. These mosquitoes bite during the day and night. Zika can be passed from a pregnant woman to her fetus. Infection during pregnancy can cause certain birth defects. There is no vaccine or medicine for Zika.
Malaria - Malaria is a serious and sometimes fatal disease caused by a parasite that commonly infects a certain type of mosquito which feeds on humans. People who get malaria are typically very sick with high fevers, shaking chills, and flu-like illness. Although malaria can be a deadly disease, illness and death from malaria can usually be prevented.