Drive from Dakar at 8h or from Saly at 9h to Joal-Fadiouth, the birthplace of President Leopold Sedar Senghor.
With a guide from the local tourism office, board one of the canoes along the oyster beds and mangroves to the millet storage area and the Christian cemetary where some Muslims from Fadiouth are buried also. Enjoy the panorama on the island and its environs.
Next, use a wooden bridge to get to Fadiouth, “the shell island”. This island is made up of a pile of shells. We will take a walk on the streets and pay a quick visit to the church before taking the wooden bridge back to the mainland.
Lunch at a restaurant beside the bolong.
Leave for Palmarin using paths that go through the tanns – these extensive areas of salty sand that get covered in water during the rainy season and the high tide. Go through a field of palmyra palms and baobab trees with several Sereer traditional houses
Arrive at an unusual lodge, surrounded by a heap of shells underneath baobab trees that are on the side of a lagoon. Set up a comfortable room with a personal bathroom in a baobab (Robinson) or on the ground (Collines).
Take time to try out the little swimming pool or to have a cocktail (not included) on the terrace at sunset.
Enjoy the nice and original dishes at the restaurant.
In the deep silence of the night, only the yelping sound of a jackal or the cry of a hyena may disturb your quiet.
DAY 2: National Park on the Saloum Islands
After walking for a short distance, we board a traditional canoe for an exceptional day at the National Park on the Saloum Islands. In a maze of bolongs and mangroves, we will come across women who harvest mangrove oysters, pick shells or sail in fishing boats. We will watch several different types of birds living in the mangroves, fiddler crabs coming out of their mud holes, and jackals running for cover on the rare strips of land.
We will go for a walk in the heart of the island to admire a heap of millennial shells, which served formerly as burial mounds, but have now been transformed unfortunately into a source of building materials.
We will sail up to the new islets shaped like a lagoon, and sit on a beach in the shadow of a sail by these virgin islets at the end of the world. Our guide, and cook on this occasion, will prepare a delicious seafood barbecue.
We can swim on this original site, sheltered from ocean currents, or relax on the quiet beach.
By mid-afternoon, return to the lodge for a second evening.
Day 3 : Réserve de Palmarin – Djillor - Saly/Dakar
With a local eco-guide, you may go for a very pleasant walk for one hour in the natural reserve in the Palmarin community. Use the moment to find out more about the saline areas in Palmarin, a moon-shaped landscape with waterholes and heaps of salt. Take a walk in the bush pathways.
Leave for Dakar or Saly by mid-afternoon, going through Senegal’s most beautiful palmyra forest and the traditional homes of the Sereer.