Escape to the hidden retreat of Togo and relish a wonderful series of attractions including natural spots, cultural sites, and historical monuments. The tiny gorgeous country nurtures innumerable sights. Behold the beauteousness of traditional mud huts and take a break in the midst of the unexplored. Appreciate the calmness of serene beaches and sunbathe all your worries away in a composed atmosphere. Sail down the waters of the Atlantic Ocean or take a tour through dense woods. Togo boasts of great attractions that make your vacation fun to remember.
USEFUL INFO. ABOUT TOGO
Official Name: The Togolese Republic
Form of Government: Unitary Dominant-party Presidential Republic
Capital and Largest City: Lome
Population: 8.6 Million (As of 2020)
Official Language: French
Languages Spoken: Ewe, Kabiye, French, and English
Ethnicity: Africans 99% | Europeans, Indians, and Syro-Lebanese 1%
Togo Currency: West African CFA Franc (XOF)
Map Referred: Africa
Area: 56,785 Sq Km
Lowest Point: Sea Level 0 M
Highest Point: Mount Agou 986 M
Coastline: 56 Km
Famous For: African culture | History | Traditional West African Festivals | Luxuriant Nature | Rich Wildlife | Tribal Settlements | Beaches
National Symbols: Lion | Red Rose
Time Zone: Togo (GMT +0)
Driving Side: Right
Airports in Togo: Lome International Airport
Country Calling Code: +228
West African CFA Franc is the legal currency in Togo. It has been in use since 1945 after it replaced Franc as the official tender. In the past, the country has also used a number of other currencies including the German Mark and the French franc. Today, the West African CFA Franc is used for exchanging goods and services across the eight independent states of West Africa.
1 West African CFA Franc = 100 centimes
Few Togo Money Conversion Rates for your reference (As of Sep 2020)
1 AED into Togo Currency
1 AED = 150.47 XOF
1 USD into Togo currency
1 USD = 552. 71 XOF
West African CFA Franc banknotes are generally available in the denominations of 500, 1000, 2000, 5000 and 10000
West African CFA Franc bank coins are generally available in the denominations of 1, 5, 10, 25, 100, 200, 250 and 500
The history of settlement in Togo dates back to the medieval period when the country was inhabited by a number of local tribes. These were the times when pottery making and tin processing were quite significant as a local business. However, development occurred in the region after foreign powers started invading it.
In between the 11th and 16th centuries, numerous tribes moved into the country, thereby changing its demographics and consequently, making it more culturally significant. By the 16th century, Togo had become a small center for the slave trade. In the subsequent years, the center flourished and eventually, Togo along with its surrounding region became popular as the Slave Coast.
Later on, in the 19th century, with the arrival of the Germans and the French, the colonial era of Togo commenced. This was the time when Togo witnessed drastic development in the fields of trade, economy, agriculture, and politics.
In the year 1960, the country gained complete freedom from the rule of the French. Since then, it has been progressing swiftly. Today, Togo is an independent nation rich in history, culture, and trade. It exports a variety of products to different countries across the world. The tourism industry of Togo has also started to witness a rise. People visit it to explore natural beauty and history.
Located in West Africa and bordering the Atlantic Ocean in the South, Togo is a small country with an area of about 56,785 sq. km. An approximate of 4.2% makes up the water region, while the remaining 95.8% is all land. The topographical landscape of Togo varies at every hundred kilometers. In the south, you would come across sandy beaches and shores, and, in the north, you encounter hilly regions.
The country is home to a number of lakes, of which Lake Togo is the largest. Several streams including the Mono River, the Couffo River, and the Kara River also pass through this tiny nation.
The countries that sandwich Togo is Benin in the east, Burkina Faso in the north, and Ghana in the west. The highest point and the lowest point in Togo are Mount Agou at 986 m and the Atlantic Ocean at 0 m.
Art and Music
As Togo has remained under the control of several foreign powers, its art and music are influenced by various cultures and traditions. However, authentic Togolese art and music are still rooted in the lifestyle of its ethnic groups. The ancient Togolese art is all about drawings, paintings, woodwork, and more.
However, with the advent of globalization, a number of different global artforms have been introduced in the country. People in Togo have also great affection towards music. Hence, the country hosts dozens of music festivals every year.
Food and Drink
Togolese cuisine is generally influenced by the culture and lifestyle of the tribes that have lived in the country over centuries. Maize, fish, rice, millet, beans, and cassava are the major ingredients of the staple foods in the country. However, over a period of time, Togolese cuisine has witnessed a change in its authentic flavors, especially in cities and other urban centers.
Today, people have started loving global cuisine as well. Hence, you would find tastes from across the globe at major restaurants and cafes in Lome and other cities. People also love to drink in Togo and hence, beer, lemonades, and wine are quite popular here.
Tchakpallo, Togo Lemonade, Bissap Juice, Pils, Castel
People in Togo are quite hospitable. You begin to feel it in the air as soon as you land in the country. Whether in cities like Lome or in the remotest of regions, tourists are welcomed with happy faces. People would help you with everything, ranging from routes to emergency assistance.
Laze by the uncrowded beautiful beaches and savor the idyllic settings.
Go on a hike or trek up lush green hills to feel the adventurer in you.
Witness the hidden gems and unexplored secrets of West Africa.
Witness the colors of West African culture at the local cultural festivals and traditional celebrations.
Visit fishing villages and have a great time with the locals.
Explore the lively markets, age-old sites, and the urban culture of Lome.
Take a ride through the national parks of Togo and witness magnificence spread across grasslands, rich fauna, forests, streams, and more.
Visit the UNESCO heritage site of Koutammakou, the land of Batammariba, and learn about its cultural significance.
Take a tour of the museums and historical monuments and delve deep into the bygone era of Togo.
Togo experiences a tropical climate and hence, it gets hot and humid summers and cool winters. On average, the temperature ranges between 25℃ and 30℃ throughout the year. However, the coastal regions are quite cooler in comparison to northernmost regions.
March is the hottest month in Togo with an average maximum temperature of 32℃.
August is the coldest month in Togo with an average maximum temperature of 27℃.
June is the wettest month in Togo with about 228 mm of precipitation.
November to February
The best time to visit Togo is from November until the end of February as this is the time when the temperature conditions are optimum and the weather is pleasant. Hence, you can roam around without facing any kind of difficulty in comfort and with convenience.
Visit Togo with Family/Kids
Visit the Lake Togo and spend some time picnicking by the cool waters of the lake.
Explore the national parks of Togo and learn about different species of plants and animals.
Visit Lome Grand Market and shop for handicrafts, clothing, and other souvenirs.
Take an adventurous road to the Togo Mountains and enjoy the luxuriant nature of the country.
Pay a visit to the Lome Cathedral and other such religious places and savor the divine atmosphere.
Visit Togo as a Couple
Spend hours with your partner enjoying the serenity of beaches at Lome, Aneho, and more.
Venture off in the remotest parts of the country and have a great time with each other.
Explore the museums of Lome and other cities in Togo and learn a little bit about the history and culture of the country.
Visit the parks and gardens of Togo and find your Zen.
Visit Togo with Friends
Explore the cultural landscape of Koutammakou, the land of Batammariba.
Go on an adventurous journey in the waters of the Atlantic Ocean.
Visit the hilltop villages and settlements of Togo and learn about the raw culture and lifestyle of the country.
Explore historic places like Chateau Vial and Independence Monument and understand their significance.
What to Buy?
Dresses and textiles
Nestled in the Tamberma Valley, Koutammakou must be on the top of your bucket list while exploring the beauty of Togo. The place is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is recognized for its traditional mud houses that depict the ancient lifestyle and culture of the country. Visit this historic and architecturally significant beauty and frame its old-world charm. Price Range: $3 - $4 per person Timings: 09:00 am to 05:00 pm
If you are looking for a place where you can hang out with your family and have a fun time amid nature, then Lake Togo would surely make for an amazing place. Come here and find yourself lost in the beautiful hues of nature while lazing by the cool waters of the lake. Take colorful selfies with your family or just spend some time admiring the magic of nature. Price: No Entrance fee Timings: Anytime
Fazao-Malfakassa National Park
The largest national park and one of the major tourist attractions in Togo, Fazao-Malfakassa National Park is an amazing place to witness the richness of Togo. The park is filled with several natural wonders in the form of rare species of plants, animals, and birds. The park is also known for harboring dramatic landscapes complemented with soothing waterfalls and towering hills. Do visit it if you desire for a dose of adventure. Price: $7 (approximately) Best Timings: 06:00 am to 05:30 pm
Togo National Museum
Located in the capital city of Lome and established in the year 1975, Togo National Museum is one of the best places to visit in Togo. Various exhibits on historical, artistic, and cultural aspects of Togo are a major attraction here. The museum narrates the legendary tales of Togo with its wonderful collection of musical instruments, clay pots, baskets, drawings, and other ancient relics. Visit it and understand the greatness of the country. Tour Price: $3.70 per person Best Timings: 10:00 am to 05:00 pm
Honoring the freedom of Togo from the rule of the French, the Independence Monument is one of the most popular and recognized structures in Lome. Surrounded by palm trees and fountains, the stone monument stands with great pride and represents the struggle of the country. Price: No Entrance Fee Timings: Anytime
Aneho is a land of wonders in the beautiful expanse of Togo. The place is known for its serene beaches that nurture a calm and peaceful environment. Break free from the bustle of Lome and escape to this ravishing location to rejuvenate. Watch beautiful waves, admire the hues of dawn and dusk and spend your day lazing in a tranquil atmosphere. Price: No Entrance Fee Timings: Anytime
Most Popular Cities in Togo Lome
The capital city of Togo, Lome is the ultimate destination in the country. The city has bustling streets, ancient sites, vibrant markets, lively crowd, gorgeous museums, architectural beauties, and more. The must-visit places in Lome include Independence Monument, Togo National Museum, Togo Grand Market, and Koutammakou.
One of the largest cities in Togo, Sokode is another place that would make for a wonderful weekend excursion. Visit it and explore its liveliness spread across rugged streets and urban settlements. The city has numerous beautiful attractions too. The list includes Sokode Mosque, Parc National de Fazao-Malfakassa, and more.
Kpalime is filled with natural beauties. You have got great streams to relish and lush greenery to enjoy. It is located near the border of Ghana and has an interesting history to explore. Apart from waterfalls, hills, green fields, and coffee and cocoa plantations, the major attractions here are Holy Spirit Cathedral, German Cemetery, Governor's House, Chateau Vial, etc.
Other Important Places to Visit in Togo
Kran National Park
Lome Grand Market
Commemorating the day when Togo gained complete freedom from the rule of France, the Independence Day is celebrated with utmost passion in the country. Locals seem drenched in the colors of patriotism and the streets witness a sense of unity and brotherhood. The day brings joy and happy smiles across the country. Place: Across the country Time: 27 April
One of the most beautiful cultural festivals in Togo, Gbagba is truly a spectacular ceremony to savor. The festival is celebrated for multiple days wherein people worship their deities and indulge in singing and dancing performances. The spectators wear colorful clothes and revel in the cultural beauty of Togo. Place: Kpalime Region Time: August
Observed in the city of Sokode, Gadao is another celebration that would provide you insights into the cultural colors of Togo. The festival lasts for three days with each day signifying different traditions. On the first day, people thank their ancestors. The second day is called the Feast of Knives where the might of Semassi warriors is honored. The last day known as Kosso, is all about celebrating the role of warriors. Place: Sokode Time: March
This is the day that marks the beginning of the New Year in Togo. However, the kind of traditions the festival celebrates are show-stealers. The sacred stone that predicts the destiny of the coming year is a major attraction here. The color of the stone indicates the fortune of the village. The white color stands for luck, while the black represents famine and flood. Blue means good harvests and red stands for war. Place: Glidji Village Time: September
Other Festivals Celebrated in Togo
New Year's Eve
Before you enter the boundaries of Togo, you need to obtain a valid visa unless you belong to a visa-exempt nation or territory. As per the visa policy of Togo, the following are the countries that are allowed to visit Togo without any prior visa. Citizens of all these countries can enter Togo with just an ID card.
Benin, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Cote d'Ivoire, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Romania, Senegal, Sierra Leone, and South Africa.
Citizens of all the remaining nationalities can obtain a Togo visa on arrival that allows you to stay within the country for a maximum period of 7 days. However, you can also apply for the extension of your stay for a maximum period of 90 days.
Togo Visa Requirements:
A valid passport that doesn't expire within six months from the travel date
Two blank pages in your passport
Color passport-size photographs
Togo Visa Application Form
A Return Ticket
Evidence of your stay in the country
Yellow Fever Certificate
Buses are the cheapest and most reliable means of transport in Togo as these are available at all the major places across towns, cities, and villages. Though you can use them to travel within cities or towns, they are often considered for long-distance journeys. On average, a bus journey between two different places wouldn't cost you more than $3.
You can either go with bush taxis that are generally used for sharing rides or take car taxis to get around. Though car taxis would provide you ultimate comfort, bush taxis are best for those who love exploring the raw lifestyle and culture. On average, bush taxis cost less than $1, and car taxis charge about $5 for a ride across a town or a city.
Though Togo has a railway line that stretches towards more than 500 km, it doesn't serve passenger trains.
Via Air Route
Lome Tokoin Airport is the only international airport in the country. However, it is well connected to other parts of the world. The airport serves more than 500,000 passengers on average per year. You can take direct flights from Paris, Lisbon, Morocco, Ghana, and other nearby countries. Once you have reached the airport, you can either use a cab or other public transport services to reach the destination.
Via Road Route
Togo is greatly connected to the nearby countries of Ghana, Burkina Faso, and Benin by road. If you are visiting it from one of these nations, then you can take the road route. Cities and towns in Togo can easily be accessed from places like Accra, Porto Novo, Tamale, Parakou, and Koudougou.
Via Rail Route
Lome and Blitta are the two major railway stations in Togo. However, none of these have passenger trains running between places.
Via Water Route
Lome and other coastal ports in Togo have ferries plying to the ports of nearby countries. Hence, if you are coming from Benin or Ghana, then you can take a boat or a ferry to reach Togo. Several West African Cruises are also available from Cape Town and Accra.
Always keep hard cash with you as you wouldn't find too many places that accept card payments.
Do Visit Koutammakou site if you desire to sneak peek into the history, heritage, and culture of Togo.
Mingle with locals or stay with them to learn about the values, culture, and authentic lifestyle of the country.
Use buses while traveling between cities and cabs for getting around within a city for a comfortable journey.
If you do not want to experience rainfall in Togo, then avoid visiting the country in the months of May, June, and September.
Keep a local guide with you while exploring out, especially for historical sites, as they have deep knowledge about places.
Aneho is the best place in Togo to enjoy the serenity of beaches and live the best of a tropical vacation.
Always keep emergency numbers, especially the police helpline number, handy.
Do not visit unexplored or remote regions of Togo without a local guide.
Petty theft is common at public places in Togo and hence, you need to be aware of your surroundings.
Do not flaunt any kind of valuables or expensive things at public places.
Do not leave your bag, food, or drinks unattended.
Stay away from unregistered vehicles.
Do not carry original documents. Keep those locked inside your hotel room and keep the copies with you at all times.
Tap water in Togo isn't quite safe to consume and hence, you would need to rely on bottled water.
Only eat at places that are popular amongst locals for serving hygienic and healthy food.
Use bug spray or insect repellent while exploring the remote regions of the country.
Get required vaccinations for Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, Malaria, Typhoid, Yellow Fever, Rabies, Chickenpox, Cholera, Mumps, and Pneumonia before flying.
Use hand sanitizers at regular intervals or whenever needed.
Get travel insurance before you leave for Togo as it would help you cover your bills in case of emergencies.
What to Pack?
Light summer clothes
Warm clothes for winters and high-altitude regions
Flip flops and sandals
Dress Code and Etiquette
Dress in a decent manner while visiting places of religious importance such as churches, temples, and mosques.
Refrain from public display of affection as it is strictly criticized in Togo.
Do not use your left hand to eat food or pass things as it is considered ill-mannered.
Wear modest clothing, wherever possible, as the fashion scene of Togo is quite conservative.
Do take permission from the person before capturing his/her video or photo.
Do not disrespect local culture, customs, and moral values.
Ghana makes for an amazing weekend getaway from Togo as the country holds a significant amount of history, nature, and culture to explore. The place has wondrous landscapes, age-old monuments, cultural settlements, and hidden historical sites to look forward to. Hence, it is one of the must-visit destinations in West Africa. Plan an excursion and make your vacation a memorable affair.
Though Burkina Faso is rarely considered as a holiday destination amongst international travelers, the country has in store a number of surprises. It has scenic waterfalls, unexplored natural trails, forests, peaks, museums, churches, and more. Take a look at the ruins of Loropeni or marvel at the beautiful Ouagadougou Cathedral. Go on an elephant safari in Nazinga Forest or capture the rocky structures of Domes de Fabedougou.
Another neighboring country that sandwiches Togo is the historically and culturally prominent Benin. Plan a visit to this wonderful place on a weekend and savor its untold beauty. Explore the Historical Museum of Abomey and learn a bit about the bygone era of the country. Go on a shopping spree and bargain for choices at its lively markets. Other major places to visit here include Lake Aheme, Pythons Temple, Kota Falls, Honme Museum, and more.
With a total area of 56,785 sq km, Togo is one of the smallest countries in Africa. Despite the fact, the country is quite rich in agriculture.
During the period between the 16th and 18th centuries, Togo was popular as the Slave Coast for Europeans often visited it to buy slaves.
Togo has an amazing tropical climate and hence, its popularity amongst offbeat travelers is increasing day by day.
Togo has been ruled by numerous foreign powers in the past including the French, the British, and the Portuguese.
People in Togo are quite attached to their cultural roots and hence, you would find people here living their lives in a traditional manner.
Located in Togo, Koutammakou, often called the Land of Batammariba, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site for being rich in culture and history.
Togo is one of the top 5 largest producers of phosphate in the world.
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