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Djibouti (Arabic: جيبوتي) is the capital and largest city in Djibouti and has an estimated population of roughly 400,000. It is located in the southeast of the country on a peninsula that divides the Gulf of Aden from the Gulf of Tadjoura. The city was founded in 1888 as a seaport and nowadays still functions this way and on top of that it is the cultural, economical and administrative centre of this small country. Although the city has not that much to offer, it has a charm of its own and gives the traveller the opportunity to have a look in one of the lesser known countries in the world.
Marché Central located on Blvd De Bender in the capital is an amazing market that is worth checking out. The market starts pretty early in the morning and doesn't end until the late afternoon. The best time to visit the market in order to see the most activity is around 1 pm. The market is very crowded and extremely load with the choir of car horns and hawkers.
Djibouti has a hot and relatively dry semi-desert climate, but the humidity during some months of the year can be very high. Combined with the high temperatures, being here is almost unbearable. May to September are very hot with average day temperatures close to 40 degrees Celcius, but 47 degrees has been recorded during high summer. Although this is also the dry period it is very unpleasant. From October to May temperatures are still high and mostly around 30 degrees or more and this is when the occasional rain showers occur. High humidity prevails during this time.
Djibouti-Ambouli International Airport (JIB) receives all international flights, among which are those with the national airline Djibouti Airlines. Destinations include Addis Ababa, Aden, Borama, Boosaaso, Dire Dawa, Dubai and Hargeisa. Daallo Airlines has flights to and from London, Paris and Dubai. Air France flies to Paris and Kenya Airways to Nairobi, Yemenia to Sana'a and Eritrean Airlines to Asmara.
Trains travel between Djibouti City and the Ethiopian city of Dire Dawa. Trains leave three times a week in both directions and it takes around 13 hours to cover the route.
There are daily Toyota Landcruisers travelling between Djibouti City and Hargeisa in Somaliland (Somalia), but it is a rough 20 hour ride.
Buses travel from Djibouti city to almost any town in the country on a daily basis. Buses leave when full and it is best to show up early to secure a seat.
Although there is no fixed scheduled, there should be a couple of traditional dhow travelling between Djibouti City and Mokha in Yemen. It takes around 20 hours to cover this route. To add, there should be crossings to the southern port city of Aden in Yemen as well.
Domestic destinations by dhow and speedboat include Obock and Tadjoura on the other side of the Gulf of Tadjoura. They leave several times daily and take around 3 hours.
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