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The Best Time to Visit Senegal

Senegal, a land of vibrant culture, stunning landscapes, and warm hospitality, beckons travelers with a promise of unforgettable experiences. As you set your sights on this West African gem, you might wonder, “When is the best time to visit Senegal?” Fear not, for in this article, we will navigate the seasons, events, and hidden gems that shape the ideal moments to embark on your Senegalese adventure. Whether you’re seeking festivals that paint the streets with color or tranquil beach retreats, we’ve got the insider scoop on when Senegal shines its brightest. So, let’s dive into this guide and discover the perfect time to uncover the treasures of Senegal’s enchanting embrace.


Temperatures in January are mild even with the famous ‘winter sun’. However, due to the coastal winds open air restaurants and rooftop bars, the need for a coat becomes very critical in the evenings. Join the celebrations of New Year’s Eve celebrated widely in the country. Expect no rainfall this time of the year.
Average Temperatures: 22°C (72°F)
Average Rainfall: 0mm (0 days)


The weather in February here is mostly fresh and calm. However, expect the occasional dust storms breezing from the Sahara to the Atlantic Coast. This is not a great time to go mountain climbing in Dakar. Explore the inner crevices of the country in this month like Niokolo-Koba National Park which is home to crocodiles, hippos, antelopes, elephants etc.
Average Temperatures: 23°C (74°F)
Average Rainfall: 0mm (0 days)

Thatch roof huts at Niokolo-Koba National Park
Niokolo-Koba National Park Senegal | Image: © Niels Broekzitter/flickr


In March, Senegal experiences a rapid increase in temperatures but the water temperature drops to its lowest. In the southern region of Casamance however, the weather is different from the rest of Senegal. Inner Casamance is characterized by plush greenery and exotic wildlife while coastal towns like Cap-Skirring is home to endless stretches of white sandy beaches. Join the Senegalese as they celebrate the International Women’s Day on March 8.
Average Temperatures: 24°C (75°F)
Average Rainfall: 0mm (0 days)

Baobab Tree in Cassamase
Baobab | Image: © Joshua Shapiro/flickr


April is the month when Senegal celebrates its independence from France. The Independence Day celebration is held on the 4th of this month and you’ll get to enjoy big celebrations and even military parades. Easter is also another holiday which is not celebrated lightly in the country. At the end of the month or sometimes in May, an international jazz festival is held in St. Louis. Artistes from different parts of the world come here to perform and as well as guests too who come here to have a great time.
Average Temperature: 26°C (79°F)
Average Rainfall: 0mm (0 days)

People playing local musical instruments in Senegal
Senegal | Image: © Micheline Canal


May starts off with the national holiday, Labour Day and the christian celebrations of Pentecost and Ascension also take place in this month. In Senegal, May is considered a bellwether month as it is a determinant if the year will either be hot or very hot. Head to Dakar and experience the largest contemporary arts show in Africa, Biennale.
Average Temperature: 28°C (82°F)
Average Rainfall: 0mm (1 day)

Dakar | Image: © World Bank Photo Collection


Temperatures can soar up to 30° in June and it also marks the beginning of the rainy season in some parts of Senegal. June is a great month to explore the coastal towns of the country like Petite Côte. Also, visit Saly which happens to be the largest and most developed coastal town, home to many hotels, restaurants and fun activities. Head to the lagoon at Somone, Popenguine or go surfing at Toubab Dialao which all have excellent beach fronts in common.
Average Temperatures: 23°C – 30°C
Average Rainfall: 15mm (2 days)

A view of Toubab Dialao, Senega
Toubab Dialao, Senegal | Image: © Gareth Richards


July marks the beginning of the rainy season in most parts of the country with attractions such as Niokolo-Koba National Park closed because of the muddy roads and the likelihood of them flooding. However, fewer tourists are around this time of the year so bargain flights and accommodations are easier to get this time of the year. Visit Dakar and experience the rich local culture during this month.
Average Temperatures: 25°C – 30°C
Average Rainfall: 72mm (10 days)


This is the rainiest month in Senegal. Most days are especially hot and humid and if it’s the flora and fauna you’re after, then you’re in for a treat. The vegetation becomes very plush, adding strokes of colour to the beautiful country. Many hotels close down in this period. However, some may still operate but the prices crash. National holidays like le Fête du Tirailleur Sénégalais, Feast of Assumption (Christian) and Tabaski (Muslim) are held in this month. You can join in during these celebrations.
Average Temperatures: 25°C – 32°C
Average Rainfall: 179mm (18 days)


Go big game fishing at the Atlantic during this month. Tuna and the blue marlin are particularly available in September because of their migration along coastal currents in this month. Get in your bathing suits and go scuba diving, jet skiing etc. Ocean temperatures are mostly lukewarm in this time.
Average Temperatures: 25°C – 31°C
Average Rainfall: 149mm (12 days)


October marks the end of the rainy season in Senegal. It also happens to be the hottest month in most parts of the country. Setting up camp at any of Dakar’s golden beach destinations is the main activity during this month as the country nears peak humidity. Many beach bars and restaurants line the shores particularly along Almadies’ Petite Corniche. You are advised to wear trousers at night in this time to avoid mosquito bites.
Average Temperatures: 24°C – 31°C
Average Rainfall: 39mm (3 days)


November is one of the best months to visit Senegal with mostly warm and sunny days and temperate ocean waters. By this time of the year most of the humidity is gone and places like Petite Côte welcomes most of the European home owners escaping the winter on their continent. There are about 3 national holidays in this month which includes: All Saints Day celebrated on the 1st of November; the birthday of the Grand Magal of Touba; and the birthday of Prophet Mohammed. It is best to wear light clothing in this month and pack light also to avoid excessive luggage fees.
Average Temperatures: 22°C – 30°C
Average Rainfall: 1mm (0 days)

Coeur Sénégal
Image: © Coeur Sénégal/flickr


Christmas is no small holiday in Dakar. There are lots of Christmas decorations and road side vendors peddling tinsel in most of the expat dominated areas. Enjoy the occasional carol service if you’re religious. Dakar also hosts the African Culture and Fashion Week which is mostly held between Christmas and New Year. With mostly great weather, December is the perfect time to explore the Petite Côte in Dakar for a while. The wide-open water ways of the Sine-Saloum delta is also a great place to explore especially for birdwatchers and fishing activities. Enjoy some cocktail at the Eco-Lodge.
Average Temperatures: 20°C – 28°C
Average Rainfall: 1mm (0 days)

Birds at a beach in Senegal
Image: © Bouba Tour/flickr

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