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statues commemorating enslaved people

Benin is a country with diverse landscapes and cultures. Stretching along the coast are broad, sandy beaches dotted with coconuts and bordered by lagoons and lake cities. The interior consists of raised savanna plateaus while the far north is home to the mystical Atacora Mountains, reaching 658 meters. Here, the proud Somba people have fiercely guarded their culture, building ingeniously-designed, fort-like houses. Benin is also known for major religions like Voodoo, as well as the kingdom of Abomey, the slave trade route, the temple of royal pythons, and other fascinating historical and cultural sites that contribute to this nation’s fame.


Tour Plan

​ Arrival at Cotonou - Transfer to hotel - Welcome drink .

Visit Alladah to see the birthplace of Toussaint L'Ouverture, the liberator of Haiti, and learn about his influential role in the country's history. While there, converse with local residents and the King at his palace to gain further insights into this historic town.


Ouidah, the birthplace of voodoo, offers a full day of historical and cultural attractions. Visit the Museum of History to learn about the slave trade and Benin's ties to Brazil and the Caribbean. Stop by Kindji Market Square for a taste of local life. See the Cathedral and the famous Temple of Sacred Pythons. With Lundh as your guide, continue to the sacred forest, the slave trading post, the "Tree of Forgetfulness," the "Road of the Slaves," the haunting "Gate of No Return," and the solemn mass grave site. Tracing Ouidah's role in the slave trade provides a poignant journey through history.

On the return journey from Abomey to Cotonou, take time to stop at picturesque villages along the way. In Cotonou, guided tours go through neighborhoods filled with colorful homes. Visitors can also explore sites like the Artisans Center and Lagoon Market. The day's schedule allows for leisurely activities. Breakfast is included. Overnight accommodations are at Hotel Du Lac or similar.

Take a dugout canoe tour of the "water divinities" to observe fishermen casting their nets and learn their special techniques. Marvel at the birdlife in the Avlékété voodoo area, also the site of intriguing "voodoo" rituals. Savor original meals at "Chez Préfet," including the tasty fish dish "Dakouin" and fresh juices. Although the drive from Possotomé to Abomey is long (about 2.5 hours), the beautiful scenery and forests make the journey worthwhile. End your day with dinner at Hotel Chez Monique.

Visit the Historical Museum of Ouidah to learn about the complex relationships between colonizers and the kings of Dahomey (the former name for Benin), the horrific conditions endured on slave ships, and how enslaved people managed to maintain their voodoo culture far from home. This illuminating trip evokes deep emotions. Along the "Road of Slaves," you will hear about the journey slaves were forced to take: after being sold at the marketplace, they had to walk 3 kilometers to board the slave ships. You will see the infamous "Door of No Return" that slaves passed through before boarding the ships, never to return home. After hearing these devastating stories, you will likely need some time to reflect and unwind. Relaxing on Ouidah's beautiful beach is an ideal way to process it all. Dinner will be served at the charming Diaspora Hotel to conclude the day.


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