The beautiful waters along the coast of Senegal

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Senegal offers up some attractive holiday opportunities in west Africa. Spectacular beaches can be found all along the coast while, inland, huge nature reserves tempt wildlife enthusiasts.

Why go?

By arranging car hire, Senegal's impressive road network will allow you to explore this largely undiscovered gem...

Senegal is a country that offers year-round good weather, idyllic beaches and nature reserves with some of the best wildlife and bird-watching opportunities on the continent. In order to experience as much of the area as possible, it is a good idea to hire a car from an approved Senegal car hire company.

A trip to Senegal should start with the capital city of Dakar. Hire-car pick-up is available at Dakar Airport (DKR) and at several depots throughout the city.

If you stay in Dakar, your first port of call should be the two hills that overlook the city from the peninsula. Head to the top and you'll see the Senegalese capital sprawled out before you with the Atlantic Ocean all around. It's the best way to appreciate the sheer size of this huge metropolis.

Dakar is also home to a remarkable number of excellent restaurants which can be found in most districts. Rent a car in Senegal and you're free to head off to the parts frequented mainly by locals - often the tell-tale sign of the most authentic, delicious and best-value menus. Look out for the national dishes of thiéboudiene - a mouth-watering fish and rice combination - or chicken yassa, which is a deliciously tender chicken in a rich onion sauce.

Dakar has traditional shopping bazaars, authentic restaurants, such as La Palmeraie, and cultural points of interest such as the IFAN Museum of African Arts. Another popular tourist attraction is the Marchés des HLM, an African fabric market. Also offering traditional African products is the craft market of Soumbedioune.

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Where to explore?

The French laid out enough infrastructure for the modern traveller to see all the highlights and surprises that Senegal has to offer...

The benefit of car hire in Senegal is the accessibility it gives to major tourist attractions. Just three miles from Dakar there are the tropical gardens of Ferme de Djibelor. This site also contains a crocodile farm for those interested in getting up close to wildlife. Another area accessible by car is Saint Louis. This popular region of Senegal is home to cultural monuments, museums and international festivals. A drive north of Dakar takes you to the salt lake known as Lac Rose, where the best time to visit is during the dry season when the water turns pink.

To the south of the country is the Casamance River. This region is a picturesque area of orchards, forests and beaches. The Casamance region is also home to Cap Skiring, a popular seaside resort. Cap Skiring Airport (CSK) also offers Senegal car hire.

Some of Senegal's tourist attractions cannot be reached by car. For example, Ile de Gorée is an island off the coast infamous for its role in the trading of slaves. The House of Slaves is a museum dedicated to the tragic trade.

With car rental, Senegal offers up some splendid beaches. The best can be found just a short drive to the south of Dakar, where you'll find the charming fishing village of Toubab Dialao. The golden sand stretches for miles, and the Atlantic here is safe for swimming.