Sierra Leone has never been a country I had wanted to visit. The first time I thought about going to Sierra Leone was when I attended a meeting organized by a Sierra Leone based resort here in Nigeria. After the meeting, I read more about the country and I found it so interesting. Even without having so many tourist attractions unlike some popular destinations, it’s a country any tourist (nature-seeking travellers, adventurous travellers, etc) would love to visit.
Myself and 2 other Nigerians explored Sierra Leone and it was really good to us. The clean beaches, wildlife, experiences, food, accommodation, everything was just so great! I can tell that you won’t regret a visit to the country. In this post, I’ll be highlighting some essential tips to help you plan a trip to Sierra Leone from Nigeria.
It is VISA FREE! Travelling to Sierra Leone from Nigeria, on a Nigerian passport, you do not need a visa. Sierra Leone is one of the ECOWAS countries which gives free access to nationalities of other member countries. All you have to do is present your international passport and you are good to go.
FLYING TO SIERRA LEONE
There are quite a few airlines that fly to Freetown from Lagos. Air Peace and African World Airlines are 2 of the flights to this destination. I flew African World Airlines. Note that flights there are not direct. There is usually a stop at Accra. Cost of flight ranges from N200,000 to N350,000. This depends on when you are booking your flight. Please ensure you book early so you can get an affordable rate.
Flight on African World Airlines was really smooth, although the plane are small. The total flight time to Sierra Leone is 3 hours (outside the layovers). The plane was a 50 seater Embraer erj145 plane. You should get yourself entertained with music, books or magazines on the flight because the planes don’t individual screens for passengers to entertain themselves.
The official currency is Sierra Leonean leone (SLL). As at the time we visited, the exchange rate was $1 = 8700SLL (in town). The rate at the airport was 8400SLL. It is advisable to change your money in town. You will get better rates there.
WHAT TO WEAR
Showing off a bit of skin in Sierra Leone is no big deal. There are no strict dressing law in the country so you can dress in whatever makes you comfortable. However, dressing according to the weather at the time you are visiting will make more sense. During our time there, the weather was a bit hot (about 29 degrees Celsius).
The trip was sponsored and I did not spend anything, except on flight, so I don’t think it is best to give a cost.
THINGS TO DO
If you are seeking adventure, beach, wildlife, then this country is the best for you. It has the ability to satisfy all your travel lust. Although we did not explore too many places, the few places we visited were mind blowing! In 4 days, we visited some places and did some fun activities:
- village tour
- city tour
- visited the chimpanzee sanctuary
- explored many beaches
- visited the national museum
- visited the National railway museum.
The people I met on this trip were really friendly and open to chat with strangers. We had conversations on so many things, Nigerian culture, similarities between the country and Nigeria and so many other things. I also had to opportunity of meeting 2 of the country’s Ministers during a welcome ceremony held for us. Being top political appointees, we didn’t expect such a warm reception.