Day 1 – Freetown
Arrive in Freetown and transfer to your hotel. Overnight Country Lodge Hotel or similar.
Day 2 – Bunce Island
Head to Bunce Island to learn about Sierra Leone’s historic association with the slave trade. We then return to the mainland and explore the city, visiting some of its key sights such as Big Market and Fourah Bay College, among other places. Overnight Country Lodge or similar. (B)
Day 3 – Tiwai Island
Travel south via Bo to Tiwai Island, one of Sierra Leone’s major highlights and rich in wildlife including chimpanzees and the elusive pygmy hippo. Time permitting, we take an evening walk as the rainforest comes alive with the sounds of the nocturnal world. Overnight camping. (BLD)
Day 4 – Tiwai Island
Spend the day exploring Tiwai, walking through the forest and travelling by small boat on the river. We’ll also head out at night to maximise our chances of spotting some of the more secretive species. Overnight camping. (BLD)
Day 5 – Gola Forest - Zimmi
Head to Gola Forest, one of Africa’s top biodiversity hotspots, larger than Tiwai Island but with an equally impressive array of rare wildlife. Explore the forest before heading to the small town of Zimmi for the night. Overnight local guesthouse. (BD)
Day 6 – Mende Villages – Moa River
Drive to the nearby Moa River to meet the Mende people. In remote regions such as this, the Mende have retained traditions lost elsewhere in the country and have kept the Poro (female initiation) ceremonies alive. They are also expert woodcarvers, and their masks are famed among African art collectors. We spend time exploring their villages to learn about their unique culture, and camp nearby. (BLD)
Day 7 – Monrovia
Drive to the border with Liberia and head for the capital, Monrovia. Depending on how long the border crossing takes, we may have time to explore the city. Overnight Cape Hotel or similar. (B)
Day 8 – Monrovia
Spend today exploring the city and its history, visiting the National Museum, the Masonic Temple and the Waterside Market among other places. Overnight Cape Hotel or similar. (B)
Day 9 – Gbarnga
Drive to Gbarnga, the capital of Bong County. The town played an integral role in the civil war and was the base for Charles Taylor and his forces. We visit the central market and learn more about the tragic recent history of Liberia. Overnight local guesthouse. (BD)
Day 10 – Zwedru
A long days drive to Zwedru, a stronghold of the Krahn tribal group, stopping in villages along the way. Overnight local guesthouse. (BD)
Day 11 – Krahn Villages – Harper
Spend the day exploring traditional villages of the Krahn people, where old beliefs are still strong, and learn about their customs. From here continue to Harper. Overnight Adina’s Guesthouse or similar. (B)
Day 12 – Harper
Spend the day exploring Harper, once a prosperous town but now with its many imposing Afro-American mansions gradually returning to the land. We spend time exploring its streets and soaking up the very unique atmosphere of this unusual place. Overnight Adina’s Guesthouse or similar. (B)
Day 13 – Tapeta
A long day of driving to Tapeta, back through the forested interior. Tapeta was devastated during the war but is now growing again thanks to trade and agriculture, and will serve as our base to visit the territory of the Bassa tribal group. Overnight local guesthouse. (BD)
Day 14 – Bassa Villages - Buchanan
We spend the day exploring the villages of the Bassa people, best renowned for the women’s rather striking practice of the chalk body decorations, giving them the appearance of ghosts. We then drive to the coastal town of Buchanan, stopping en route at more villages and sites of interest. Overnight Spark Hotel or similar. (B)
Day 15 – Monrovia
After a morning exploring Buchanan, Liberia’s third largest city, we return to Monrovia for our final night. Overnight Cape Hotel or similar. (B)
Day 16 – Monrovia
This morning we head out to a series of islands that are home to a community of chimpanzees, once destined for the medical trade but now living a semi wild existence and seeming to thrive. We can join the rangers as they deliver food to the islands and watch these incredible creatures up close, before returning to Monrovia and transferring to the airport for your onward flight. (B)
Included in price:
- Airport transfers
- Accommodation – as listed in the dossier. The nature of the destinations that we operate may sometimes mean that we need to change hotels, but we’ll always endeavour to keep the same standards. Please be aware that as we operate in many countries where tourism is in its infancy, hotel standards may not be the same as you’re used to elsewhere.
- Guides – In most cases you will be accompanied by one guide from start to finish. However there may be occasions when this is not practical, for example if your trip covers a number of different countries. In these cases it often makes more sense to include different guides for each place, to take advantage of their specific knowledge of the destination.
- Meals – As listed within the itinerary / dossier (B-Breakfast, L-Lunch, D-Dinner).
Entrance fees – Entrance fees are listed for those sites that we mention within the itinerary. If there are any other sites that you’d like to see, these would be at your own expense.
- Airport taxes
- International flights
- Travel Insurance