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goree-island1

The island of Gorée lies off the coast of Senegal, opposite Dakar. From the 15th to the 19th century, it was the largest slave-trading centre on the African coast. Ruled in succession by the Portuguese, Dutch, English and French, its architecture is characterized by the contrast between the grim slave-quarters and the elegant houses of the slave traders. Today it continues to serve as a reminder of human exploitation and as a sanctuary for reconciliation.

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The Grand Mosque of Dakar, is a tribute to Algerian Berbers. Due to the timing of the inauguration in 1961, just after independence, it has an exterior that is less ostentatious and more sober than its cousins to the East. However, past its eastern archways, the cobbled interior will soon reward your curiosity. The vast inner courtyard opens to the sky and, indeed, offers a haven of privileged meditation for Dakar Muslims.

The Museum Théodore Monod " IFAN"

The Museum Théodore Monod ” IFAN” is one of the best museums in West Africa. The museum is a testimony to African art and culture with over 9000 objects on display. Lively, exhibits show masks and traditional dress across the region (including Mali, Guinea-Bissau, Benin and Nigeria) and provide an excellent overview of styles, without bombarding you with more than you can take in. You can also see beautiful fabrics and carvings, drums, musical instruments and agricultural tools. A gallery behind the main building often houses excellent exhibitions of contemporary art.

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The House of Slaves (Maison des Esclaves) and its Door of No Return is a museum and memorial to the Atlantic slave trade on Gorée Island, 3 km off the coast of the city of Dakar, Senegal. Its museum, which was opened in 1962 and curated until Boubacar Joseph Ndiaye’s death in 2009, is said to memorialise the final exit point of the slaves from Africa. While historians differ on how many African slaves were actually held in this building, as well as the relative importance of Gorée Island as a point on the Atlantic Slave Trade, visitors from Africa, Europe, and the Americas continue to make it an important place to remember the human toll of African slavery