Côte d'Ivoire

WARNING: Côte d'Ivoire experiences periodic political unrest and violence in northern regions, and it is recommended to contact your embassy or consult other travelers about the present situation prior to travel inland. Updated July 2012

The UK's Foreign and Commonwealth office as well as the U.S. State Department advises against all travel to Côte d'Ivoire at this time.

Most of the crime committed in Abidjan is by unemployed youth. Should you ever feel in danger it would be wise to seek the help of a middle-aged man. This older generation is often very contemptuous of young criminals and will likely help you out if you are being hassled. Generally Ivoirians will recognize the dangers to foreigners in their country and will often be very protective of naive travelers. This is especially true in the Abidjan neighborhoods of Treichville and Adjame.

HIV/AIDS has once reached epidemic proportions in the country, but has since saw huge improvements with an adult prevalence of 4.7%.

Effective February 15, 2009, all non CEFA country citizens visiting Côte d'Ivoire must obtain a visa before arrival. The process is online at the Official Website for Visa.


The official language is French, but there are 60 native dialects as well. The most widely spoken is Dioula. Other native languages include Hamdunga, Loftus Africanus, Gigala, Oloofid, and Ulam. But one cannot survive without French for longer time duration. And business travelers need French on their tongue to close any small deal.


Although the country was previously referred to in English as "Ivory Coast", the country has requested that it be called "Côte d'Ivoire" the equivalent in French. Pronouncing it "Coat di-VWAR" is close enough for an English-speaking person.