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15 Best places to visit in the Republic of Benin

Did you know that there are lots of amazing places to visit in the Republic of Benin? The Benin Republic is one little but interesting country to visit. However, there are so many best places to visit in the republic of Benin irrespective of its size.

Some time ago, I really never paid attention to this country. However, my perception of the country changed after visiting it. My favorite place to visit is Cotonou, especially its free-to-access Fidjrosse beach.

It is easy to judge a country from the outside when you have never visited it. However, when you go there, you’d see that it meets your expectations and more.  

If you’ve never been to the Benin Republic, don’t worry I’m here to tell you more about it. If you’re planning to visit this country, I’m also here for you. I’ll be sharing some of the most beautiful and best places to visit in the Republic of Benin.

Best places to visit in the Republic of Benin

There are so many fun things to do in the republic of Benin. Come with me, let me take you around the Republic of Benin through my article.

So, if you’re planning a trip to the Benin republic, you will find it useful. Benin republic is a visa-free country for Nigerian passport holders. All you need is your Nigerian international passport, yellow fever card, and of course your hotel reservation.

Benin republic is visa-free for country in west Africa due to the ECOWAS agreement. You can check the requirement for entry into this country if you’re not from west Africa.

If you’re a foreigner looking to come to Africa to explore this country, check out our post on what to pack on a trip to Africa to get you started.

Let’s jump right in to talk about the best places to visit in the republic of Benin.

1. Dantokpa market

Dantokpa market is one the best places to visit in the republic of Benin. Although it is a market it is a must-see. You are sure to hear about this market whenever you visit the Republic of Benin. Although this market is in Cotonou, its reputation spreads to all parts of the country. It wouldn’t be wrong to describe this place as a market of markets. 

Everyone kept talking highly about this market during my first trip to the Benin Republic. So, I decided to check it out to understand the hype. I was truly impressed with all it had to offer and I began making many trips to the Dantokpa market. 

Interestingly, it is also the biggest open-air market in West Africa. 

2. Porte Du Non Retour

Have you ever heard of the door of no return? I can see your face twisting as you’re thinking of why that phrase is familiar. Well, the door of no return is in the Republic of Benin. 

As someone with an inquisitive mind and curious spirit, you can be sure that I had to check out this place when I heard about it. The door of no return is a memorial arc as a remembrance of the slave trade era. It shows that once you go through that area, there are no hopes of turning back again.

It wasn’t surprising to see this arc on the beach. After all, the waterways aided the slave trade era. 

3. Pendjari National Park

I love the fact that the Benin Republic has its national park. I often see people who mistake a national park for a zoo. However, I always correct them that a national park has more to offer than a zoo. 

This national park is one of the best places to visit in the Benin Republic. It is home to lots of wildlife animals. In addition, you also get to see lots of flowers and vegetation. It is a place that allows you to connect with nature.  

It is best not to visit this place in a hurry. It has a lot to offer and can take up your entire day.

4. Fidjrosse beach

There is a certain form of excitement I get when I’m at the beach, and this place was no exception. I was giddy and eager to visit this beach. Thankfully, it met and even surpassed my expectations. Fidjrosse is one of the best places to visit in the republic of Benin. I had to see this place on my visit to Fidjrosse, Benin.

You can tell that the facility managers of this beach are intentional about keeping it clean. The waters are clear and the air there is just different. Truthfully, I did not feel like leaving this beach when I visited it. 

Instead, you’d find me indulging in one game or the other, or trying out the various local meals. I had a swell time and would recommend it to anyone visiting the Benin Republic to check out.

5. Babs Dock

This list of best places to visit in the republic of Benin is incomplete without Bab’s dock. Bab’s dock is a private island that you’d definitely love. One of my best highlights from visiting this island was the fact that we had to pass through a tree tunnel before arriving at the dock. I had never done such a thing before and it was a worthy experience. 

There is almost no water game or activity that you cannot do on this island, including kayaking. Visiting this island allows you to bond with the locals also. The interactions are usually smoother and more friendly. You will also get to see monkeys while on this island. 

Babs Dock, Image source: Google my business

6. Cotonou

If I asked you the capital of the Benin Republic, I’m sure you’d say Cotonou. However, Porto- Novo is the capital city of this country. 

Cotonou is one of the best places to visit in the Benin Republic in terms of cities. Its receptiveness and welcome to foreigners are one of the reasons why it has a high reputation. 

Most of the fun things to do in the country are also in this city. So it isn’t surprising that most foreigners end up in Cotonou or would want to visit the city before leaving the country.

In addition, Cotonou is the port city of the Benin Republic. 

7. Foundation Zinshou

Are you a lover of museums? I couldn’t help but add foundation zinshou to the list of top best places to visit in the republic of Benin. Personally, I love going to museums, both in my home country and also in foreign regions.

In fact, visiting the museum is one of the first things I do once I get to a new area. After all, how would I learn more about the place if I don’t go to the museum? 

At this museum, you get to see paintings that tell stories of the country through different timelines. These stories are usually captivating and give you more insights into things like culture and customs.  

You’d also get to see and appreciate random art and craft at this museum. 

8. Centre  Artisanal

How does getting a discount sound to you? Of course, I know that it would be like music to your ears. After all, everyone is looking to buy things at the best rates and prices. During one of my hunts on finding such a place in the Republic of Benin, I stumbled on this market.

Here, you get to see many handmade items. Therefore, letting you communicate directly with the makers. In addition, they also sell items at this market for fair prices, and they are not fixed. So, you can still haggle and negotiate if you’re not comfortable with the prices. 

This is where I get most of my souvenirs whenever I’m in the Republic of Benin. 

9. The Royal Palaces of Abomey

I do not know what city you’ll be staying in while in the Republic of Benin. But if you ever find yourself in Abomey, do not think that the city isn’t exciting. 

Abomey is far from being a boring city. Have you seen its royal palaces? These are some of the best places to visit in the Republic of Benin! Even if you’ll not be staying in Abomey, you can always plan to visit the city. 

I have a lot to say about the royal palaces of Abomey. However, I’d want you to experience it for yourself. I love that people are allowed to explore royalty. 

10. Python Temple

I’m sure you must have heard of Ouidah boards before, and you understand that it is a spiritual practice. Interestingly, Ouidah is also a town in the Benin Republic. The python temple in Ouidah is one of the best places to visit in the republic of Benin to add to your travel itinerary.

At the python temple, you get to know more about their spiritual practices. Yes, it might be scary initially. However, it is also intriguing. It is normal if you have lots of questions; the people there would be eager to answer all your questions. 

It is one of the top tourist attractions in the country and I encourage you to check it out. It is better to experience it than to hear the story from people.  

11. Lake Nokoue

There are some interests that stay hidden within you until you begin to explore different countries. It wasn’t until I started actively traveling to other countries that I realized that I loved fishing. Prior to that, I had never considered fishing as a hobby. 

If you do not mind fishing, I would say that this lake is one of the best places to visit in the Republic of Benin. Its environment is peaceful, quiet, and calm. Thereby, giving you a space where you can gather your thoughts. 

In addition, you can do additional activities like fishing, boating, and swimming. 

12. W National Park

I would give accolades to the Republic of Benin as it has more than one national park. It shows that the country understands the concept of preserving animals and more. 

Now, you might be wondering about the difference between this national park and others. This one is special as it has rarer species of animals. When you visit this place, you’d see animals that you never thought existed. 

As a first-timer at this national park, there’d always be something new for you to learn. Without a doubt, it is one of the best places for anyone to visit in the Benin Republic.

13. Ganvie

I’ve talked about some of the exciting cities and towns in the Benin Republic. But the villages also have hidden gems. Ganvie is a village in the country. The locals best know it as a lake village. 

It is said that this place has the largest lake in Africa. Wouldn’t you want to explore it? As a foreigner, you shouldn’t hesitate to explore all that a country has to offer. So, ensure that you check out this village before leaving the Benin Republic. 

14. Natitingou

Did you know that there is a waterfall in the Republic of Benin? You wouldn’t know unless you explore this country. 

Natitingou is one of the towns to visit if you’d enjoy seeing a waterfall. It also has a museum and other things that’d give you an incredible highlight when you visit it. 

15.  Obama Beach

If there’s a beach named after a former president, you can be sure that I’d check it out. There are many things I love about this beach, but I will say some of them. 

I love that it is a family-friendly space. So, you can bring your children to the beach and have no worries. I also love that there are many restaurants on the beach. So, there are options and you can pick from a variety.

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