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  • Writer's picturewassa123

Assinie: A Gem

This past weekend, some friends and I went down to Assinie, a famous beach town about two hours from Abidjan. Even though I’ve been here for almost two months, I haven’t spent much time at the famous beaches here.

After a long and rainy drive, we checked into our hotel, had lunch and went off to have fun. Despite the storms of the early morning it was bright and sunny when we got to the lagoon. The original plan was to jet ski, but they weren’t available so we went tubing instead. I lost my voice screaming, but it was so much fun and only 8,000 CFA. (less than $20 USD) Easily the highlight of my trip so far.

We hopped on a short ferry ride to the proper beach about two hours before sunset. It had gotten cloudy again, but the views were still incredible. The undertow of West African coasts are notoriously strong (most slaving ships crashed before reaching the coast) so we didn’t venture very far, but it was just incredible to stand and look out at the open ocean. The views honestly speak for themselves:

After getting knocked on my ass a couple times, we watched the sunset, showered, had an incredible dinner at La Maison d’Akoula and then headed to Bahia Hotel for karaoke. We sang our hearts out, listened to some French tourists do the same, danced, and stared at the night sky unimpeded by city lights. It was honestly one of the best weekends I’ve had here. I cannot recommend visiting Assinie enough.


The only thing I wouldn’t recommend is going during French school vacation. We almost had to cancel our trip because all the hotels were booked. Our original hotel canceled our reservation because the website made a booking error. The Wednesday before the trip, I called eight places in a row and they were all at capacity. We were lucky to get a room at Kame Surf Camp.

I usually don’t post about exact hotels and spaces, but Kame Surf Camp was incredible. It is a rustic, real space to enjoy Assinie’s beaches. It doubles as a surf camp and is right on the water; I had breakfast overlooking the beach. Surfboards hang from the ceilings, the lifeguard deck overlooks the pool and their strip of beach, and there are lounging chairs right by the ocean.

Think of a locally owned family surf shop in a small beach town. The owner is an incredibly sweet and involved member of the staff; when I walked into the hotel, he called me by name and led me to reception and then later checked in on us before we left.

If you’re looking for Hilton level luxury, I would recommend more resort-like places like Hotel Cououé Lodge or Les Marines de Babihana (where my friends stayed). But if you’re just looking to relax on the beach, eat some great food, and potential surfing lessons, Kame is your place.

A final logistic note: Assinie is only accessible by car. If you’re looking to visit and don’t drive, I would recommend hiring a driver for the weekend. The highways to Assinie flood when it rains and even in good weather the regular roads are bumpy and uneven. If you choose to drive yourself, please be careful!

Assinie is an incredibly beautiful wonder. I hope to visit again before I leave. Until then, I have these photos and countless memories.

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