Sierra Leone

Travel Forums Africa and The Middle East Sierra Leone

1. Posted by Utrecht (Moderator 5742 posts) 14y Star this if you like it!

I heard Sierra Leone is, apart from the border areas with Liberia and Guinee, safe to travel around again.

Does anyone here has any advice about or experience with travelling in this country recently?

Thanks, Michael.

2. Posted by Frosticles (Budding Member 8 posts) 14y Star this if you like it!

Hey Michael. I spent July-October living in Freetown, Sierra Leone. It is a safe place to travel, with all the usual logistical difficulties you may encounter in africa, like bad roads, unreliable public transport etc, but it is generally safe. I have heard reports that the YMCA in Freetown is quite cheap, good and safe. The nightlife is good, especially along Lumley beach with place like Atlantic Bar and Alex's. The country is beautiful and the people are very friendly!

Happy travelling!!!

3. Posted by wouterrr (Travel Guru 3383 posts) 14y Star this if you like it!

Hi Lilian. May I ask what brought you to Sierra Leone? Its not a destination where a lot of people go to! Cheers.

4. Posted by Utrecht (Moderator 5742 posts) 14y Star this if you like it!

Thanks Lilian,
July-October is rainy season right? Is this a big problem travelling?
Are there any trips possible to the national parks inland north and east near Bo?
Sierra Leone was a beach destiantions like Gambia (well, a little less known) up until the 80's before the civil war started.
Cheers, Michael.

5. Posted by mayaonis (Budding Member 17 posts) 14y Star this if you like it!

Hi all,

I used to work in Republic of Guinea for 3 years (neighbour of Sierra Leorne).

Sierra Leorne had a nice beach and they speak english (easy for u as travellers). the poeple are friendly and very helpful (but dont forget to give them a tips).

If u go to Sierra Leorne, why don't u drop by to Guinea, they have a nice island, waterfall ( one of them we called mini niagra falls, very beautiful). U can go by ferry (1 day journey) or aircraft. Lot of things we can learn in this country.

I'm still keep dreaming to go back again, the experiences gave me a sentimental value to keep of.

6. Posted by Utrecht (Moderator 5742 posts) 14y Star this if you like it!

Actually, I've heard that Guinee and other neighbour Liberia are not so stable at this time, although Liberia is getting better every day. But Guinee seem to be a time bomb....but of course that's only by hearing and reading, no experience myself

7. Posted by Frosticles (Budding Member 8 posts) 14y Star this if you like it!


Sorry I have been in Bangkok and away from the net!

I went to Sierra Leone to stay with some friends who have always done aid work around Africa and the Middle East. My background is in mental health and I was interested in seeing first hand what it is like to work in a third world country. I spent time working with and visiting various different health organisations. I am actually returning this Friday to work with the west africa fistula foundation for another 6-8 months. I can't wait. I have fallen in love with this place!

Yes Sierra Leone was a playground for the rich and famous. They even had a Club Med! Hard to imagine now. The beaches are stunning and so quiet - civil wars work wonders in keeping the tourists away! Great for me, terrible for the locals... at least the expats bring in some money, although much of it goes to bars and restaurants, which are run by the lebanese community.

Travelling up-country is generally not a problem. Cars, drivers and taxis can be hired easily, although I am reluctant to do so, simply because now that the roads are being fixed, they go at CRAZY speeds and they are terrible drivers! There are busses, which are safer, but take a long time. The condition of some of the roads, like up to Bo, is shitty. Apaprently that is being re-done this year. The road to Makeni is fine.

The wet season does slow things down somewhat. I really does rain incessantly. It didn't bother me, but it certainly doesn't show the country in it's most flattering light. Everything is grey. It starts to really pick up again around October. I would recommend travelling there around Dec-Jan.

I will be there soon and won't be leaving again before September, so let me know if you make it. I am happy to show you round.

Hope this helps. I remember struggling with the lack of info around before I went. Luckily I was going to stay with friends. It was my first Africa destination!

The website is becoming fantastic and is a great resource.

All the best...

8. Posted by Utrecht (Moderator 5742 posts) 14y Star this if you like it!

Hi Lil,
Thanks for your reply. I will remember contacting you when I might be going to this area this summer. Still in doubt where to go, so many countries on this globe...
Thanks again, Michael