Visiting the Ivory Coast may warrant a high degree of caution, but with the proper planning and knowledge, your trip can be spent having fun, rather than worrying about what might happen.
Before you can enter the country, you'll need to have all your paperwork in order. Don't react if you feel you are being treated suspiciously - this is normal.
You will also want to keep this paperwork (or a suitable copy of it) on your person, as security checks are held often, and quite randomly. Unfortunately, some soldiers have been known to demand money from tourists. Carry only a little with you and hand it over if requested. To help protect your money, consider carrying traveller's cheques instead of cash. Avoid resistance with soldiers.
No country is free of violence, and the same can be said for the Ivory Coast. While volatile situations are generally few and far between, it pays to be vigilant of the possibility to prevent you from getting involved in a dangerous situation. Guns pose an ever-present danger. For the most part, poverty is the real problem, as it increases the chances of being robbed. A few common-sense guidelines can help you make better-informed decisions:
- Never travel alone - there is strength in numbers
- Avoid getting caught up in public protests
- Stay on the main roads and avoid alleys and any back road devoid of businesses or people
- If you are splitting up with your party, make sure someone knows where you plan to be, and don't stray from that plan
Safety doesn't end with the streets, however. In dealing with violence and crime, many people disregard a natural danger - the beaches. There are strong currents and undertows in the Atlantic that often cause even strong swimmers to drown. Make sure you follow the local safety precautions.
Book your trip to the Ivory Coast today!