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Burkina Special - a Tour to Burkina Faso


On our trip through Burkina Faso we stay in clean thoroughly selected 2-3-stars-hotels. The rooms have en suite facilities, electricity and water supply and air condition or fan. The hotels at Ouagadougou, Bobo Dioulasso, Banfora and Lake Kompienga have clean swimming pools.

Here is a selection of the hotels used on our tour:,


OK Inn, Ouagadougou

Hotel Auberge, Bobo Dioulasso

Hotel Cascades Palace, Banfora

Nazinga Ranch

View from Hotel Thialy

OK Inn, Ouagadougou


Airlines with scheduled flights to Burkina Faso include Brussels Airlines offering flights to Ouagadougou and from Ouagadougou via Brussels on Tuesdays and Saturdays. Air France offers daily flights to Ouagadougou and return flights except on Wednesdays from Ouagadougou via Paris. Another option is Ethiopian Airlines which has  several scheduled flights per week to Ouagadougou and return flights from Ouagadougou via Addis Ababa.

For further information regarding flights schedules, reservation, connection flights and other questions related to your flight please consult the airlines’ websites:,, and

The itinerary of our group guided tours with fixed departure dates matches the Air France flight schedule. If you choose another airline there may be modifications to the itinerary and/or additional cost due to extra overnight accommodation and extra transfer expenses. If you book a tailor-made trip with us you can fly the airline of your choice. We will be pleased to provide you with a regarding your reservation.



Burkina Faso is divided into three climatic zones, the Sahelian zone, situated in the north of the country, south to it the Sudano-Sahelian zone and the Sudano-Guinean zone which covers the south and southwest of Burkina Faso. The country has a primarily tropical climatewith two alternating seasons: a long dry season and a short rainy season. In the Sahelian zone, covering about 25% of the country, the rainy season runs sometimes only two months with maximum rainfall of up to 300mm a year. The Sudano-Sahelian zone is the largest climatic region, covering half of Burkina Faso. The rains in this area tend to start in May/June and to dry up in September/October. Rainfall figures are highest in the Sudano-Guinean zone which receives up to 1,300mm a year. The rains here tend to start in May and are over by October.  The temperatures average between 25°C and 30°C, March, April and May being the hottest months. Burkina Faso is coolest in January and February. During the dry season the harmattan winds blow, bringing dust from the Sahara.



Light short-sleeved cotton clothing is recommended for the days and a long-sleeved shirt and trousers for the evenings which will help you to fend off mosquitoes and face the cooler temperatures.In Burkina Faso shorts and short skirts are ill-advised for women. It is also unusual for men to wear shorts in Burkina. In the rainy season you need a waterproof jacket and/or an umbrella. (see chapter “climate”). In many hotels there is a laundry service on offer, so you can get your washing done. As for footwear, you should carry with you a good pair of walking shoes for our hiking tours in Banfora and a pair of sandals. Thongs are useful in shower and pool areas.  Don’t forget your swimwear! You will have the opportunity to swim in the sea, and some of our hotels have clean swimming pools.



International and national calls can be made from post offices and hotels. The prefix for UK is 0044, for USA and Canada 001, for Burkina Faso 00226. As in many other African countries, the mobile industry in Burkina Faso is booming, and coverage is excellent across the country. For detailed information please contact your provider prior to departure. If you have a GSM phone and it has been „unlocked“, it is possible to buy a local SIM card for about 7$ and buy top-ups. International calls to UK and USA cost about 400 to 500 CFA per minute.

Internet access is widely available in Ouagadougou and prices not expensive, although connections are often slow.


Electric Supply & Plugs

220 volts alternating current. Generally, you can recharge your batteries in your hotel room without a problem. Burkina Faso uses two-pin continental-style plugs, so you will probably need an adapter. US citizens may also need a voltage converter. Please note that power cuts are frequent.


Food and drinks

In the itinerary we state which meals are included on each day. 

Food included in the breakfast varies according to hotel standard. Most hotels serve bread, butter, jam, sometimes honey and processed cheese or omelette for breakfast. It also includes tea or coffee. Upmarket hotels usually serve buffet breakfast. Dinner we usually take in the restaurants of our hotels or in clean, thoroughly selected restaurants in town. In many places international cuisine is served.

The Burkinabé staple is the rather tasteless tô, a maize-, millet- or sorghum-based dough mixed with water, that is usually combined with a vegetable sauce or a sauce made of ladies’ fingers, baobab leafs or groundnuts. These sauces are also served with rice and couscous made of fonio or cassava. The sauces can be quite spicy. Riz gras is another popular dish consisting of rice fried in oil with tomato paste and onion. It is usually served with fried fish or meat. Fufu is a popular starch-based staple originally from the coast. There are also plenty of meat dishes on offer. Beef, mutton, goat, chicken and bush-meat are available throughout the country. Guineafowl known as pintade in French and fish are often seen on menus in Burkina Faso. Popular side dishes in restaurants are fried plantain known as aloco and fried sweet potatoes or yam. Caterpillars are a popular food source as they are rich in protein.

Tap water should be boiled or filtered before you drink it. In all bigger cities you can buy mineral water in bottles. You should try bissap, a thirst-quenching juice made of the purple petals of the hibiscus flower. Other tasty juices are available like tamarind or ginger juice and depending on the season baobab juice. Beer is also produced in Burkina Faso, the most popular brand is Brakina. Locally brewed millet beer known as dolo or chapalo is available in the villages.



A Yellow Fever vaccination and certificate is a compulsory requirement for entry into Burkina Faso (see visa requirements). You should always carry the certificate with you while being in Africa.

Immunisations against tetanus, diphtheria, polio and hepatitis A are recommended by the World Health Organization, regardless of your destination. For other vaccinations and prophylactic measures please consult your doctor, travel clinic or tropical medical bureau before departure.

Travel clinics:


  • Berkeley Travel Clinic, 32 Berkeley St., London WIJ 8EL, Tel.: 020 7629 6233
  • Cambridge Travel Clinic, 41 Hills Rd, Cambridge CB2 1NT, Tel.: 01223 367362
  • Edinburgh Travel Health Clinic, 14 East Preston St., Newington, Edinburgh EH8 9QA, Tel. 0131 667 1030,
  • Fleet Street Travel Clinic, 29 Fleet St., London EC4Y 1AA, Tel.: 020 7353 5678,
  • Hospital for Tropical Diseases Travel Clinic, Mortimer Market, Capper St. off Tottenham Court Road, London WC1E 6JB, Tel. 020 7388 9600,
  • InterHealth Travel Clinic, 111 Westminster Bridge Road, London, SE1 7HR, Tel.: 020 7902 9000,
  • Trailfinders Immunisation Centre, 194 Kensington High St., London W8 7RG, Tel.: 020 7938 3999,



  • Centres for Diesease Control, 1600 Clifton Rd., Atlanta, GA 30333, Tel.:(800) 232 4636 or (800) 232 6348
  • IAMAT, International Association for Medical Assistance to Travellers, 1623 Military Rd., 279 Niagara Falls, NY14304-1745,



  • IAMAT, Suite 1, 1287 St. Clair Av W, Toronto, Ontario, M6E 1B8, Tel.: 416 652 0137,
  • TMVC, Suite 314, 1030 W Georgia St., Vancouver, BC V6E 2Y3, Tel.:888 288 8682,



For further health information visit following websites:


To prevent traveller’s diarrhoea, peel fresh fruits before eating them and avoid fresh salads and ice cubes in basic restaurants. Be careful and very selective when eating or drinking in street stalls and make sure that meat is always well cooked and plates and serving utensils are clean. Don’t drink hastily ice-cold drinks. Consult your doctor before departure for appropriate medication and rehydration mixtures.

The best prevention of malaria is to avoid being bitten. The evening wear clothes covering your entire body and use mosquito repellent. Sleep under a mosquito net and/or turn AC or fan on. For further prophylactic measures consult a specialist for tropical diseases.

Keep away from street dogs, monkeys and other mammals that could carry rabies. Avoid bathing in standing bodies of water because they are high-risk areas for bilharzia. 



Travel guides:

West Africa, Lonely Planet, 7th edition, published Oct 2009

Burkina Faso, Bradt Travel Guide, 2nd edition, published October 2011

The Rough Guide to West Africa, 5th edition, published June 2009 



The CFA franc (Communauté Financière Africaine) represented on international banking systems by XOF, is the currency of Burkina Faso. Exchange rates are $1 = 521 CFA (July 2012), £1 = 817 CFA (July 2012), €1 = 655.95 CFA. The CFA franc is pegged directly to the Euro. Notes are in denominations of CFA 10,000, 5,000, 2,000 and 1,000; coins come in CFA500, 250, 200, 100, 50 and 25. Coins of CFA 10 or 5 exist, but they are extremely rare.

Please note that finding change can be very difficult at times, particularly in small shops, restaurants, taxis and street stalls, so you should always have a good supply of cash money in small denominations or coins.

Banking hours in Burkina Faso vary according to the bank and its location. Generally speaking, most of them open very early, close for a long lunch break and reopen in the afternoon, so you should be able to find an open bank from 07.15 to 11.00 and from 15.30 to 17.00, Mondays to Fridays.

You can change cash money in banks, some hotels, foreign exchange bureaus (Bureau de change) and in some Lebanese supermarkets (like branches of Marina Market). The best hard currency to bring is euros, some banks and money changers also change US dollars. In Ouagadougou and Bobo Dioulasso BECIA-B and SGBB banks are equipped with ATM machines, allowing you can withdraw money using your Visa card. The banks in other towns do usually not accept foreign credit cards. Cashpoints are sometimes not working or malfunctioning, so do not count on them. Please note, that most banks and cashpoints only accept Visa card. Mastercard, American Express or other credit cards are rarely accepted. Only very few big hotels, restaurants or supermarkets, such as Marina Market accept payment with credit card. EC Maestro card is an absolute no-go everywhere in Burkina Faso. While travellers’ cheques offer a greater security, changing them can be time consuming and commission is very high. You will be asked to produce both your passport and the receipt you get from your bank when purchasing them. Travellers’ cheques are only accepted by some bigger banks. They should be issued in euros or US dollars.



Burkina Faso is a real treasure trove for passionate photographers. Whether the colourful dwellings of the Kassena, the rich wildlife at Nazinga Ranch or the castle-like houses of the Lobi, there are countless photographic subjects.

Before you snap people please ask permission. A small friendly conversation can help you to break the ice and win your subject’s sympathy. Particularly in the animistic parts of the countries there are sacred places where photography is not allowed. Please follow your local guide’s instructions. Some places charge a photo fee (e.g. Nazinga Ranch). Taking pictures is not allowed inside the museums. It is strictly forbidden to take pictures of military buildings and people wearing uniforms, airports, dams, bridges, power plants, police stations, control posts along the roads and border posts!



Demonstrations have been occurring more frequently in Burkina Faso since February 2011. Although the situation has since calmed down again you should avoid all demonstrations and public gatherings.  Unfortunately the crime rate has increased in the past few years, so travellers should be vigilant.

The danger most likely to affect a tourist is pick-pocketing, particularly in busy markets, bus stations, in crowds in the streets or in shared taxis. Bag snatchers are few, but can occasionally strike, speeding past on mopeds.Do not wear expensive jewellery or carry large amounts of cash or expensive items such as cameras. You should keep belongings close when walking down streets. We recommend you to keep your documents, cash money, credit card and cheques in a skin-hugging hidden money-belt or a button-up chest pocket. Always travel with photocopies of your documents and keep them in a separate bag.

Avoid walking around the streets at night, especially alone.During late evening or around/after midnight, we recommend you to use a taxi.

For up-to-date information and safety and security advice about your destination please check your government’s travel advisory:,,

In case of emergency please contact your embassy or representation in Burkina Faso:

For UK:

There is no British Embassy in Burkina Faso. The British Ambassador to Burkina Faso resides in Accra.


British200 High Commission

Osu Link

Off Gamel Abdul Nasser Avenue

PO Box 296

Tel.: +233 302 213 250 or +233 302 213

Fax: +233 302 213 274

Office hours: Monday - Thursday: 07:30 to 15:30, Friday to 13:00.

There is a British Honorary Consul, Mr Patrick de Lalande, who can only offer limited consular assistance in an emergency.


Mr. Patrick de Lalande

Honorary Consulate of the UK in Burkina Faso

01 BP 6490 Ouagadougou 01

Burkina Faso

Based at ICI, Initiatives Conseil International

Impasse Thévenoud

Mobile: +226 70203982

Tel: +226 50 30 88 60

Fax: +226 50 31 25 43



For USA :

Embassy of the United States of America

Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso
Rue 15.873
Avenue Sembène Ousmane
Ouaga 2000, Secteur 15
Tel: (226) 50-49-53-00
Fax: (226) 50-49-56-28

American citizen services are scheduled as follows:

Monday, Wednesday, Thursday: from 2:00 pm to 4:30pm, Tuedsay: from 8:00am to 4:30pm, Friday from 8:00am to 11:30am.

For Canada :

Embassy of Canada

316 Professeur Joseph Kizerbo ave.

01 P.O. Box 548

Ouagadougou 01

Tel: +226 50 31 18 94 station 3000
Fax: +226 50 31 19 00

Office hours: Monday to Thursday: 08:00 – 13:00 and 14:00 – 17:00, Friday: 08:00 – 13:30


Time zone difference

Burkina Faso’s time zone is UTC/GMT + 0. As they do not observe daylight saving time they are one hour behind in summertime.



Although entirely voluntary, tipping is a recognized part of life in Africa. In the more well-to-do restaurants you can tip 5 – 10% if you were satisfied. For hotel tipping guidelines are as follows: for porters 100 CFA for one piece, for housekeeping 200 CFA per person per night. At your discretion you might also consider tipping your driver, tour guide and local guides in appreciation of the efficiency and service you receive.


Visa requirements

You may choose to use a visa service or send your application to the representations listed below.

Please note, that for this trip you need to have 2 empty pages in your passport.

Please note that a Yellow Fever vaccination and certificate is a compulsory requirement for entry into Burkina Faso (see chapter “Health”). The certificate is often checked upon arrival.

All visa information is subject to change. You should confirm all visa related issues with the relevant embassy or consulate prior to departure.

Visas are required by all nationalities. Passports valid for a minimum of six months beyond date of departure are required by all. Visas are issued in countries with Burkina Faso representation.

The addresses are as follows:

For UK residents:

Embassy of Burkina Faso in Brussels, Belgium

16 place Guy de Arezzo

1180 Bruxelles

Tel.: +32 02 345 99 12 (Tel.: 347.00.41) Fax: +32 02 345 06 12


Honorary consul for Burkina Faso in the UK:

Mr. Colin Seelig

The Lilacs, Stane Street

Ockley, Surrey


Tel.: +44 (0)1 306 627 225

All applications must be accompanied by the following:

• Valid passport.

• Two completed application forms

• Two passport-size photos (attached to form).

• Relevant fee payable in cash or by postal order made out to Colin Seelig only

  Single entry 3 months: £30, multiple entry 3 months: £40

• Registered, stamped, self-addressed envelope for postal applications.


Please submit all the documents to above mentioned address.

Visas are normally valid from the date of entry.

3 Working days required. If papers are in order, visas are issued promptly.


For the United States:

Embassy of Burkina Faso in the United States

2340 Massachusetts Av NW

Washington DC

Tel.: +1 202 332 55 77


All applications must be accompanied by the following:

-       A valid passport

-       Two completed application forms (available on the website)

-       Two passport-size photos

-       Visa fee: US citizens are eligible for up to 5 years multiple entries visa, the cost is $ 100, Payment Should Be Made by money order or company check only

-       Photocopy of Yellow fever certificate

-       Registered, stamped, self-addressed envelope for postal applications.

Visas are issued within 72 working hours. Express visa (within 24 hours) on request for a supplement of $ 50 per visa.


For Canada:

Embassy of Burkina Faso in Canada

48 Range Rd.


Tel.: +1 613 238 47 96

Fax: +1 613 238 38 12 or

Office hours: from 9 am to 4 pm Monday to Friday except holidays

All applications must be accompanied by the following:

-       Two visa application forms

-       Valid passport

-       Two passport-size photos

-       Visa fee: 3-month visa for one entry 55 CAN $, 3-month visa for multiple entries 73 CAN $. The fees can be paid by certified check or money order made out to the Burkina Faso Embassy or in cash

-       Registered, stamped, self-addressed envelope for postal applications.


Visas are issued within 48 working hours



What to take


  • Passport
  • Air ticket
  • International yellow vaccination card
  • Photocopies of your documents (it’s good to keep them in a separate bag)
  • Cash money, credit card
  • Hard top suitcase or tear resistant travel bag + day bag
  • Protective cover for your suitcase
  • Swimwear
  • A pair of flip flops (for shower and pool etc.)
  • A pair of sandals
  • Comfortable footwear, non-slip hiking boots
  • Long lightweight trousers, shorts, long-sleeved shirt for the evening, light thin cotton clothing
  • Sunhat and sunglasses
  • Suncream
  • Umbrella and/or waterproof jacket
  • Towel
  • Toilet paper, tissues, wet wipes
  • Torch with spare bulb and batteries
  • Swiss knife
  • Personal first-aid kit
  • Insect repellent
  • Photographic  equipment, memory cards/film rolls, batteries
  • Binoculars


What you should know before you go

… Burkina Faso is a wonderful country to visit, but remember that Africans have a different perception of time. A trip through West Africa requires a high degree of flexibility, patience and tolerance, western standards regarding service, punctuality, comfort and hygiene cannot be applied here. Although we thoroughly choose our vehicles and use only vehicles in good condition, flat tires or other car breakdowns can happen. The road conditions in African countries can change unexpectedly due to heavy rainfalls requiring a detour or bridges can suddenly become impassable. We do our utmost best to ensure a smooth journey but please understand that delays may occur. Technical defects or service inconveniences in the hotels such as the lack of towels can often be rectified within a few minutes. In case of any inconvenience please contact your tour guide!

Burkina Special - back to the itinerary






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Rue 768, porte 503

Baco Djikoroni ACI

Bamako - Mali

Tel. +223 78683275 / 73180186