Cruise only (Please call for flight options)
Setting sail from Dakar
The busy, dusty streets of Senegal's capital Dakar are filled with life and colour, noises, smells and local music. The city extends over the Cap Vert peninsula - as the name suggests, it is a former French colony, and the distinctive atmosphere still has traces of the French influence. You can get a great view of the flat peninsula and ocean beyond from Les Mamelles (The Breasts), two small and appropriately shaped hills. The people here are friendly and helpful, so expect a warm welcome - but watch out for the usual hustles and scams of a busy city.
If you have time, take the ferry across to Île de Gorée – at first sight, a beautiful historic town, which will help bring alive the terrible history of three hundred years of slave trading.
Cape Verde: Praia
Praia is the capital of Cape Verde, set on the south coast of Santiago island. Highlights include a scattering of attractive Portuguese colonial architecture around the Praca Alexandre Albuquerque, while the lively fruit and vegetable market will give you a taste of local life at street level.
Cape Verde: Fogo
The island of Fogo is a remarkable sight, a towering and still active volcano where several hundred hardy (or perhaps foolhardy) souls still insist on living inside the crater. The otherworldy volcanic landscape is extremely fertile, and we recommend trying the excellent wine produced here.
Cape Verde: Santo Antão
Santo Antão is perhaps the most beautiful of all the Cape Verde islands, a landscape of spectacular peaks and ridges where houses cling precariously to the steep valley sides. The winding mountain roads, which take you up past banana and sugarcane plantations, are not for the faint of heart, but worth it for the stunning views from the top.
Cape Verde: Boa Vista
The windswept dunes of Boa Vista are a little piece of the Sahara, blown westwards from the African mainland. The island’s stunning beaches provide nesting sites for loggerhead turtles, while the main town, Sal Rei, is characterised by charming cobbled streets and colonial architecture.
Banjul is the capital of The Gambia, Africa’s smallest country, situated at the point where the Gambia river enters the Atlantic. City highlights include the National Museum and the bustling Royal Albert Market, and the nearby Tanji Bird Reserve attracts ornithologists from around the world, with hundreds of colourful species.
Arriving in Dakar
For a brief respite from the heat and bustle, go to the Institut Francais in the centre of town. We find it a bit of a haven; lovely gardens to enjoy over a coffee.
Your home from home
MS Spitsbergen joined the Hurtigruten fleet in 2016 after an extensive renovation, and operates both the classic Norwegian coastal route and expedition voyages to Svalbard.
What we love
Calling at regular coastal route towns, MS Spitsbergen spends more time in port than other Hurtigruten vessels, allowing a little more time ashore. The ship's manoeuvrability and small size allows guests to get even closer to the stunning scenery that this part of the world is famous for.
|Style||MS Spitsbergen is relaxed and comfortable, accommodating a combination of tourists and Norwegians ferrying goods up and down the coast.|
Tailor-make your trip
Where to stay in Dakar
The comfortable Radisson Blu is probably the best choice.
Sightseeing in Senegal
Outside Dakar lies the beautiful Pink Lake – Lake Retba. Its high salt content attracts a bacteria which creates the colour.