This trip has been designed to enable you to visit Djibouti's must-see attractions in maximum comfort, with a choice of accommodation and the country's best restaurants.
But you'll still be an "active" traveller, with excursions on foot, snorkelling and buggy trips all on the programme.
Finally, authenticity and relations with the local people are not neglected, with a visit to a family in their traditional home, and to the village of Dougoum.
Naturally, as with all Africorne Travel holidays, this programme can be adapted to best suit your requirements.
DAY 1 Visit to Djibouti and the DECAN refuge
Pick-up from Djibouti airport
Transfer to the Kempinski Palace, the most prestigious hotel in the country, with its superb swimming pool and several restaurants.
Depending on your time of arrival, visit the Arihba district or the squares of Mahmoud Harbi and Menélik, the shopping street of the cash desks...
Choice of lunch in one of the Kempinski restaurants or in the Red Sea restaurant
Afternoon : visit to the DECAN animal sanctuary or visit to the city of Djibouti, depending on your day and time of arrival and the morning's activities.
Evening meal at the Moon Light restaurant on the Route de Venise
Night at the Kempinski Palace
DAY 2 Departure for the Sables Blancs hotel near Tadjourah
The Hôtel des Sables Blancs is located on the most beautiful sandy beach in the country.
Early morning departure from Djibouti.
About forty kilometres before reaching Lake Assal, we stop to admire the breathtaking scenery of the Dimbiya Canyon, nicknamed the "Grand Canyon of Djibouti" ....
A few kilometres further on, another stop at the stele of B. Borrel, the French magistrate whose partially charred body was found at the bottom of the cliff on the morning of 18 October 1995. The "Borrel affair" soured relations between Djibouti and France for several years.
We then leave the road to take the "slip road" to Lake Assal. Located 153 metres below sea level, Lake Assal is one of the saltiest lakes in the world (over 300 grams of salt per litre of water). This fact, combined with the very high evaporation rate due to the intense heat, explains why salt has been mined here for hundreds of years. No living organism can survive in the waters of Lake Assal.
We'll be able to take a dip here, as we're taking fresh water on board for the shower; plastic shoes are necessary to avoid injuring ourselves on the sharp salt crystals.
The very high temperatures that prevail in this place do not make it very hospitable, but its legendary beauty, described in particular by the adventurer writer J. Kessel, makes it a site not to be missed.
Note: On request, we can organise a bivouac on site so that you can enjoy the sunrise the next day. From here, it is also possible to walk to the Ardoukoba volcano after an approach in a 4×4 vehicle.
Lunch: picnic at Le Goubet near the shark pit
Arrival at Les Sables Blancs late afternoon
Evening meal and night at Sables Blancs
DAY 3 Snorkelling at Sables Blancs in Tadjourah Bay before leaving for the Day
Morning : snorkelling on the splendid drop-off, where the underwater fauna and flora are of great beauty and variety
Lunch at Sables Blancs
Afternoon : Departure for the Day camp.
We'll make a diversion to meet a family of Sedendar nomads in their traditional daboyta at Bolli, north of Randa.
We then take the track from Randa to the Day camp in the late afternoon. This well-equipped camp is at an altitude of around 1,500 m, so warm clothing is a must, even in summe
The Day camp is equipped with Daboytas (traditional huts) arranged on a nicely terraced area with trees. Its sanitary facilities are very satisfactory. From this place, it is possible to make excursions in the eponymous primary forest or to hike to the other camps of the Goda Mountains, provided you are a good walker. This camp is also the ideal starting point to go to the Abourma rock engravings site.
Evening meal and night at the Day camp
DAY 4 Hiking in the Day forest
Morning: excursion on foot to the Abayazid marabout summit (4h30 round trip); approach possible by 4X4 vehicle.
or a short walk in the forest, in the fresh, green countryside
Lunch at Day Camp
Afternoon: Drive to Tadjourah - On our way visit the village of Dougoum (school, crafts, cheese factory)
Evening meal and overnight at the Gadileh Resort in Tadjourah
DAY 5 Water activities at Gadileh resort
Morning: Relaxing and swimming in the pool or fishing or diving and visiting Tadjourah
Lunch at Gadileh Resort
Afternoon: return to Djibouti by ferry
Evening meal at the Café de la Gare restaurant in Djibouti and overnight at the Kempinski
DAY 6: 1st day at the Neem farm
Departure for ferme de Neem in As Eyla on the road to Lac Abbé
Morning: drive from Djibouti to Dikhil on an asphalt road of 120 kms
Crossing the semi-desert expanses of Petit Bara and Grand Bara
where sand swirls, mirages and gazelles are observable with luck
Guided tour of the Dikhil palm grove
Lunch at the restaurant in Dikhil
40 km track to the Neem farm where permaculture is practiced (several hundred neem trees have been planted here)
It is a real lodge with several pavilions, tastefully furnished, where everything has been designed for the comfort and well-being of the occupants (equipment, quality of materials, etc.)
Evening meal and night at the Neem Farm
Very early in the morning departure by buggy for 40 km of track to watch the sunrise in the middle of the chimneys of Lake Abbé–
Before returning, visit the boiling water springs, chimneys and approach the pink flamingos by the lake
After the return trip, lunch at the lodge
Afternoon: idleness or new buggy outing with supplement
Evening meal and night at the Neem farm
DAY 8 Return trip to Djibouti and Decan refuge
After breakfast return to Djibouti
Lunch at Sunny Hill restaurant in Arta
Afternoon: visit of Djibouti city or the DECAN refuge depending on the activities carried out on the 1st day
Evening meal at the Melting Pot restaurant in Djibouti
Night at the Kempinski
DAY 9 Maskali Island
Day at Maskali Island (1)
Lunch in the shade of a faré
Return to Djibouti in the middle of the afternoon
Evening meal at the restaurant in Djibouti (Yemeni fish at Youssouf)
Transfer to the airport at the end of the evening
(1)In the season from mid-November to the end of January), the day in Maskali can be replaced by a whale shark outing in the morning and snorkeling on Arta beach in the afternoon (underwater show guaranteed)