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Ouidah is a city in Southern Benin known for its Voodoo culture and slave-trade history.


Get in[edit]

From Porto-Novo, take RNIE1 south and west to Cotonou. Continue west past Cotonou for 45 mins and you will arrive at Ouidah.

Get around[edit]


Ouidah History Museum inside the Fort of São João Baptista de Ajudá
  • 1 Door of No Return. Memorial to the Slave trade
  • 2 Basilica of the Immaculate Conception. Basilique de l'Immaculée Conception (Q2091236) on Wikidata Basilique de l'Immaculée Conception on Wikipedia
  • 3 Zinsou Foundation Museum (Le Musée de la Fondation Zinsou).
  • 4 Brazilian Mansion (Maison du Brésil). A restored slave traders mansion, now a memorial.
  • 5 Fort of São João Baptista de Ajudá (Fort of St. John the Baptist of Ouidah). The fort was built by the Portuguese when tapping into the Atlantic slave trade. When slavery was legally abolished, the fort was abandoned until 1865 when it was reoccupied by the Portuguese. In 1961, the then Republic of Dahomey, one year after its independence from French rule, annexed the fort for good. The fort now serves as the Ouidah Museum of History. São João Baptista d’Ajudá (Q1969968) on Wikidata Fort of São João Baptista de Ajudá on Wikipedia
  • 6 Ouidah Museum of History (Musée d'Histoire de Ouidah), +229 21 34 10 21. Located in the fort. Showcases the archaeology, history and arts of Ouidah. Ouidah Museum of History (Q7110333) on Wikidata Ouidah Museum of History on Wikipedia


  • Voodoo Festival. Annual festival held on 10 January. Thousands gather to dance, fall into a trance, scream and perform mock attacks on bystanders. Quite a spectacle.



  • Good Marquis at Gbena – You’ll find JM and the boys there every Friday night. They offer salad, roasted turkey, chicken, and fish, and African staples (rice and pâte). (Tell Zem Marquis Gbena)
  • Amicalé – Sometimes Ouidah can wear on you. Go to Amicale next to the basilica. The couple that owns it are so nice, you’ll come back just for the company. They have schwarma, hamburgers, ice cream, fish, chicken, and an Ivorian speciality called Atcheke. Drinks are a little more expensive than at buvettes.
  • Côté Pêche – Some of the best fish in Ouidah. Don’t order of the menu, ask them what’s good. If you go in a group, you can negotiate to share a large fish. Side dishes include fries, legumes and rice. (Tell Zem “Restaurant en face d’EPP Bresil” if they don’t know “Coté peche”)
  • Le Jardin Secret – This is supposed to be very good food. It’s secluded, but there are signs on the highway. It’s also a hotel and offers moto and bike rental.




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