African Paris: a trip to Cote d'Ivoire
Exotic Africa, imbued with the spirit of elegant Paris - just such an atmosphere will await during a holiday in Côte d'Ivoire. Previously, the country was a colony of France, so even the official language here is French. Holidays in Côte d'Ivoire will surprise you with an amazing combination of African flavour and tropical nature with European architecture and majestic Catholic cathedrals. A special checklist will help you prepare for a trip to Africa.
What to see in Côte d'Ivoire
- National parks
The exotic nature of Côte d'Ivoire is highly valued even by the international community. After all, many natural parks and reserves are UNESCO World Heritage Sites. In particular, the Komoe National Park, the largest protected natural area in West Africa, has this status. In the park environment there are various savannahs, islands of forests and floodplain meadows. About 135 species of animals and more than 500 species of birds live in the reserve.
The Nimba mountain reserve also belongs to the UNESCO heritage. This is the perfect place to see rhinos, lions, hippos, chimpanzees and other African animals. And the Thai National Park, also protected by UNESCO, contains one of the last pristine patches of rainforest in West Africa. More than ten species of monkeys, pygmy hippos, bongo antelope, African buffalo, etc. are found here.
- Cultural capital of Abidjan
Abidjan was once the capital of Côte d'Ivoire. Today, this city on the coast of the Gulf of Guinea is one of the most important places for lovers of cultural tourism. After all, there are numerous architectural and historical sights of the country. For example, the Marial temple will amaze with its abstract form. The blue-and-white tower curls up like a shell. The windows are decorated with colorful stained-glass windows depicting scenes from the life of the Virgin Mary.
If you are thinking about where to go for a closer acquaintance with the local culture, then be sure to visit the National Museum in Abidjan. The basis of the exposition is traditional Ivorian musical instruments, sacral figurines and ritual masks with different grimaces. Near Abidjan is the ghost town of Gran Basam, abandoned by Europeans in the 19th century. because of the epidemic. Until now, abandoned houses and sights of European architecture have been preserved here.
Basilica of Notre Dame de la Paix
The capital of Yamoussoukro is home to a striking temple, officially recognized as the largest church building in the world. The Catholic Cathedral of Notre-Dame-de-la-Paix towers over spacious green fields. The building is quite young, because it appeared only at the end of the last century. Near the cathedral is a hospital built at the request of the Pope as a condition for his participation in the consecration of the temple.
The luxurious building, built on the model of the main Catholic shrine in Rome, is generously lined with marble and dazzles with the whiteness of its dome. Inside the temple, multi-colored stained-glass windows depict Jesus Christ and other biblical heroes. To the altar in the center of the round hall surrounded by columns, as if the sun's rays stretch the passages between the rows. At the same time, up to 18 thousand people can fit here.
Tourist visa to Ivory Coast
A tourist visa is issued to Côte d'Ivoire for 90 days. You can get it even upon arrival in the country, but only at the Felix Houphouet-Boigny International Airport, located near Abidjan. It is also possible to apply for a visa online, because the country's authorities have introduced electronic visas. This option is available on the only website officially recognized by the government of Côte d'Ivoire.
The cost of a tourist visa is 109 euros. Upon arrival, tourists must be photographed and fingerprinted. Do not forget that before traveling to the country you need to be vaccinated against yellow fever. We advise you to find out more detailed information about the rules for entering Côte d'Ivoire during a legal consultation.
Required documents for obtaining a tourist visa:
• 4 visa applications completed in French;
• internal passport;
• 4 colour photographs (size 3x4 cm);
• medical insurance;
• hotel booking confirmation;
• an extract from bank accounts;
• booked return air tickets.