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Cayenne to Kourou

Cayenne is the capital city of French Guiana which is part of France.  France is part of the EU and Schengen community.  Cayenne offers the following points of interest for tourists and photographers;

  • Place des Palmistes (and Suriname consulate)
  • Trips to Salvation Islands (Les Îles Du Salut)
  • Botanical gardens
  • Cathedral of Saint-Sauveur
  • Alexandre-Franconie museum

Cayenne, French GuianaCayenne, French Guiana

Cayenne has very few places to stay so hotels are expensive, airbnb however does offer cheaper places to stay.  There are lots of restaurants and bars downtown, you’ll feel like you are in France, technically you are!

Cayenne is a very walkable city, you can see most of the sites of the city on foot.  It can get quite hot so walking early morning or evening is a good idea.  You’ll be able to photograph colonial buildings, architecture and historical monuments such as the statue of Felix Eboue whilst exploring the city.

Suriname visa / tourist cardSuriname visa / tourist card

I had to make a stop in Cayenne because I needed to get a visa for the next country, Suriname.  Getting the visa is a very simple process.  You hand over your passport and €20 and they put a tourist card in your passport.  Probably the easiest visa you’ll ever get!  The price of the tourist visa has recently gone up to €30 but the process remains the same.  The Consulate of Suriname is located at 3 avenue Léopold Héder in downtown Cayenne close to Palm Tree Park (Place Des Palmistes).

Catamaran Catamaran

I took a 1 hour, €10, share taxi from Cayenne to Kourou.  From there I took a Catamaran to the Salvation Islands (Les Îles Du Salut), these are about 10km further north and cost €30 return.

A view of St Joseph Island from Royal IslandA view of St Joseph Island from Royal Island

The Salvation Islands (Les Îles Du Salut) offer the following points of interest for tourists and photographers;

  • Devils Island (Île du Diable)
  • Royal Island (Île Royale)
  • St Joseph Island (Île Saint-Joseph)
  • Wildlife including tufted capuchin, agouti, humming birds, iguanas, macaws, squirrel monkeys

I had about 4-5 hours on the Royal Island, which gave me plenty of time to walk around, take lunch and to take lots of pictures of the wildlife.

Capybara, Royal Island, French GuianaCapybara, Royal Island, French Guiana

There are plenty of quiet areas just off the path on the island, if you go alone and sit quietly, the wildlife will come to life around you.  Just be careful of the monkeys!

Squirrel Monkey (Saimiri sciureus), French GuianaSquirrel Monkey (Saimiri sciureus), French Guiana

Kourou to Paramaribo