In particular the easiest area to navigate on foot for visitors stretches from Dantokpa market down to Ganhi, and west to Jonquet. As long as you're staying within central Cotonou, the fare should not exceed CFA. Pay attention to your belongings, however, and avoiding walking around after dark is probably your best bet. For those who prefer to stroll aimlessly, the most interesting scenes will likely come in the Zongo neighborhood, the city's busy Muslim quarter centered around the huge main mosque of Cotonou, a hub of street activity. They follow the main national highway out of Cotonou, starting from the Dantokpa market and heading west beyond the Godomey interchange. By taxi[ edit ] Conventional drop taxis taking you directly to your destination like you might find in New York or London are not the norm in Benin - most taxi drivers wait at fixed intersections for passengers willing to rent the entire vehicle. These are very popular, and while not unique to Benin, are probably more highly concentrated here than anywhere in the world. The minimum fare is CFA See[ edit ] Cotonou is far from an attractive city, even accounting for the expected sprawl and poor sanitation one expects in urban West Africa.
The upmarket Haie Vive area is also a good place to explore on foot, as it's concentrated along a single strip - but don't be surprised expats take their SUVs with NGO plates to have another drink a few doors down. Pay attention to your belongings, however, and avoiding walking around after dark is probably your best bet. For those who prefer to stroll aimlessly, the most interesting scenes will likely come in the Zongo neighborhood, the city's busy Muslim quarter centered around the huge main mosque of Cotonou, a hub of street activity. Expect to pay about francs per kilometer. These are the main commercial areas of Cotonou, so shoppers will want to park the car and walk about to check out the shopkeepers and vendors selling anything and everything. Many vons narrow side streets are bumpy at best and underwater at worst. As long as you're staying within central Cotonou, the fare should not exceed CFA. On foot[ edit ] Cotonou is not a particularly attractive city to wander about on foot, but much of it is also based on easily navigable grid system - making foot travel a decent option for those looking to wander or squeamish about hopping on the back of a zemidjan. Bush taxis also follow this route. However, they will generally not be interested in short intercity trips - preferring passengers to hire a taxi for several hours at a time. Still, there are a few things to see. By zemidjan[ edit ] Moto taxis - locally called zemidjans or kekenos, are the most common form of transportation for the average Beninese person. The minimum fare is CFA The cathedral is the seat of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Cotonou. Most establishments have parking of some sort, but nobody will bat an eyelash if you pull up onto the sidewalk to park. Many people know a taxi driver whom they contact by phone or WhatsApp when they need one, so you can get in touch with a driver by asking around. Bring a helmet along or buy one once you get to Cotonou - it's absolutely essential for your safety, and even with a helmet riding a zemidjan or "zem" is much more dangerous than driving a car. They follow the main national highway out of Cotonou, starting from the Dantokpa market and heading west beyond the Godomey interchange. By car[ edit ] Driving in Cotonou can be harrowing. These are very popular, and while not unique to Benin, are probably more highly concentrated here than anywhere in the world. Some Cotonois will take the taxis which are safer than zems, and marginally cheaper for as much of their way as they can, then hail a zem to the destination. Still, the grid layout makes Cotonou not terribly difficult to navigate, and having your own car is certainly the safest way to travel. They also head east, crossing the lagoon to Akpakpa. In particular the easiest area to navigate on foot for visitors stretches from Dantokpa market down to Ganhi, and west to Jonquet. Wandering on the beach - strictly during the daytime, as it's a spot for crime at night - can also provide great views of the ocean thrashing about. There are also taxis plying a fixed route - these taxis are often headed to other cities, but can be hailed for voyages within Cotonou.
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