Togo Travel Guide: All you need to know to visit Togo in 2023

Welcome to Togo

Togo Beach Landscape

Despite being a small country, Togo is one of the most beautiful destinations in West Africa. It offers good roads, short distances, white sandy beaches, welcoming people , and mountains waiting to be explored.

This ultimate Togo travel guide offers practical tips, visa information, and must-see attractions to help you explore this unique nation.

Document checklist for Togo

  • Visa (if applicable)

  • Valid passport

  • Return or onward ticket

Essential Togo travel information

  • Currency - The official currency of Togo is the West African CFA franc (XOF). The CFA franc is tied to the Euro. $1 is equivalent to approximately XOF 618.

  • Daily budget for 1 person - Allow a daily budget of XOF 40,352 ($60).

  • Languages - The official language in Togo is French. Two indigenous languages are also widely spoken and used in formal education and media: Ewé and Kabiyé.

  • Number of travelers per year - Togo recorded a total of 876,000 tourists in 2019.

  • Socket type - Type C, 220V supply voltage and 50Hz.

  • Time zone - Greenwich Mean Time (GMT).

  • Top 3 cities to visit - Kpalime, Lomé, and Togoville.

  • Top 3 landmarks/monuments - Lake Togo, Koutammakou, and Keran National Park.

Visa information for Togo

Togo allows certain travelers to apply for a temporary visitor visa online. Besides a visa, travelers also need to fill out a travel declaration. Find out which documents you need with our handy Visa Checker Tool or keep reading below.

The Togo eVisa explained

The Togo eVisa allows eligible travelers to apply for a tourist visa online. It's similar to a traditional visa, except that no stamp or label is placed on your passport by an embassy or consulate.

While many nationalities can get a visa on arrival, this is only valid for 7 days. However, by completing the simple Togo visa application process online via iVisa, you can get a visa for up to 90 days per entry.

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The Togo Travel Declaration explained

The Togo Travel Declaration is an online document that all visitors must complete before international travel to the country, and before applying for an eVisa. The Togo health authorities use this form to monitor the spread of COVID-19 and in case of an emergency.

iVisa offers travelers the opportunity to apply for both the eVisa and the Travel Declaration simultaneously, saving you time and effort!

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Visa difficulty index for Togo

Accessibility: 5/5

Togo is an easy country to access, with most people being eligible for visa-free entry (West African countries) or visa-on-arrival. However, if you’d like to stay longer and avoid hassle, it’s a quick and easy process to get the eVisa before your trip.

Time to get your visa: 4/5

The application process takes just a few days. iVisa offers three different options, depending on your budget and needs.

Costs: 4/5

The government fees are relatively low. Additionally, the iVisa processing fee includes 24/7 customer service, a careful review of your application, and peace of mind.

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Typical costs and budget for Togo

A guide to what you'll spend on a daily basis in Togo on a mid-range budget.

  • Daily spending - Expect to spend about XOF 40,352 ($60) per person, per day. This includes:

  • Meals - A meal costs about XOF 15,520 ($25) per person.

  • Transport - Depending on your travel plans, local transportation may cost up to XOF 6208 ($10) per day.

  • Hotel - The average price for a double room in Togo is XOF 15,520 ($25) per night.

On average, a trip to Togo for two people for one week can cost up to XOF 6522 ($938).

Transport and best ways to travel around Togo

Aside from the current COVID-19 regulations, mainland Togo is usually easily accessible and offers various connections via air, train, and bus. Here are the best ways of getting to and around Togo.

Getting to Togo

Also known by the former name of Lomí-Tonkin, Gnassingbé Eyadéma International Airport is the busiest airport in the country. Travelers from North and South America have to connect in Europe or a nearby African destination to fly to the country.

Currently, two direct flights service European destinations (Paris-Charles de Gaulle and Brussels), which are operated by Air France and Brussels Airlines.

Additionally, Togolese overland routes include road and rail links with its Southeast Asian neighbors, such as Vietnam. However, the Trans-Siberian Express is currently closed due to the Russia-Ukraine conflict.

Arrival and immigration tips for Togo

A few tips to make the immigration process smoother:

  • Apply for your Togo Business Visa in advance, as well as your Travel Declaration.

  • Togo mainly uses cash, and major credit cards are not accepted in restaurants and businesses. Stock up on XOF by using ATMs or taking cash in euros to exchange.

Getting around Togo

There are two kinds of taxis in Lomé and most other places in Togo: cars and motorbikes. Taxis have yellow license plates and their registration number painted on the car. Although not practical if you travel with luggage, motor taxis offer quick access to city centers since they can bypass traffic, but be aware that traffic can be chaotic.

The Climatize Bus serves the south-north route between Lomé and Cinkasse and is pretty comfortable. Other than that, there are no formal bus networks in Togo.

If you're going anywhere else that requires long-distance travel, try a bush taxi. These are usually private cars or minivans. The price is charged per passenger, and cars only leave when full. It is also possible to hire the entire vehicle for your journey, which is worth it when traveling in a group.

Private tourist services also exist, simply ask your hotel about options. Despite Togo's railroad network, passenger trains do not currently operate.

Safety in Togo

It is generally safe to travel to Togo as a tourist, as long as you exercise normal precautions.

Personal safety is most at risk in Lomé, where locals and tourists are targeted for scams and robbing. Here are a few tips to stay safe:

  • The seafront area around Hotel Sarakawa in Lomé is dangerous and should be avoided at night.

  • There are strong currents along Togo's Atlantic coast, making it unsafe for swimming. Stick to pools at hotels where possible.

  • There are pickpockets and scam artists operating along the beachfront and at and around markets in Lomé, so take the appropriate precautions to keep your valuables safe.

  • Outside the city, carjackings are common. Drivers should only stop for people who are wearing an official uniform. You may come across official and unofficial roadblocks. In any case, always follow the directions of local authorities.

  • It is important to purchase travel insurance in advance to avoid medical emergencies. This will enable you to access emergency services, receive medical treatment, and even arrange medical evacuation if needed.

  • Understand that the country offers limited consular assistance in case you need help from the embassy. Always register yourself with your country’s embassy to provide consular support when you need it.

  • Monitor local media for up-to-date information about COVID-19 regulations and protests as things can change quickly with little or no warning.

  • Always keep digital copies of your travel documents in case of lost and stolen passports.

Weather in Togo

The temperature in Togo is hot all year round, even at night. November to February is the best time to visit Togo, with pleasant temperatures and no rain.

The hottest period is March and April, which is best avoided. The rainy seasons run from May to June, and September to October. During these months, Togo's unpaved roads are difficult to travel on.

Must do and see in Togo

Don’t miss these awesome sights on your holiday to Togo:

  1. Kara and the Kaby Mountains - In addition to being the capital of Northern Togo, Kara is also the heartland of the Kabiye people. It's also one of the gateways to the Kaby Mountains, or Massif Kabye, where traditional villages are still home to skilled artisans from weavers to potters to basket makers.

  2. Koutammakou - This UNESCO World Heritage Site is a traditional settlement that spreads along the Tamberma Valley. The homes were built by the Batammariba people in the 17th century, and the stunning mud houses resemble forts.

  3. Lake Togo - A coastal strip separates Lake Togo from the Atlantic, making it more of a lagoon than a lake. Taking a wooden canoe across is a wonderful way to see this area.

  4. Togoville - The first trading post with Europeans and the last place of the slave trade in Togo is now the center of the Togolese Voodoo religion.

  5. Keran National Park - This is not only one of the most beautiful and popular national parks in Togo, but also one of the most well-known. You can enjoy the beautiful forests and wildlife here, such as elephants, buffaloes, lions, antelopes, and monkeys.

Typical Togolese food to try

You'll have a great experience with these mouth-watering dishes from Togo.

  • Akoume - A traditional Togolese corn flour that is typically served as an accompaniment to other dishes such as fish, vegetables, and meat stew.

  • Fufu - This paste made of yam, cassava, or plantains, is accompanied by a clear sauce or a peanut sauce, and fish, beef, or chicken.

  • Ayimolou - This simple recipe of rice and beans cooked together, with a tomato sauce added on top, is a favorite among locals.

  • Djenkoumé - This dish consists of corn dough with tomato, garlic, ginger, and local red palm oil. It’s typically mixed with grilled chicken.

  • Pinon - One of the most popular dishes in Togo, made from cassava flour, ginger, bay leaves, garlic, pepper, tomatoes, and onion. Then, it’s added to boiled pork or goat meat.

Vaccine information for Togo

Togo requires a yellow fever certificate. Make sure you get an up-to-date vaccine six to eight weeks before you go. Malaria is also highly prevalent.

We advise you to check the CDC website for up-to-date info about all vaccination requirements and recommended medicine.

A guide to hiking in Togo

Hiking Togo's bewitching mountains with their gorgeous views is one of the best things to do in Togo. Mount Agou specifically is perfect for a hiking trip. It is situated near the Ghana border, to the southeast of Kpalime.

Additionally, there are a lot of beautiful villages where you can learn about their traditional lifestyles. You’ll also discover cacao, coffee, avocado, and orange plantations.

The closest large town to Mount Agou is Kpalime, located a few hours north of Lomé, the capital city. The gentle slopes are accessed by a dirt road. If there is such a thing as a 'standard route,' it roughly follows the road but skips many of the switchbacks. You will encounter the picturesque village of Djigbe part way up along with lovely views of the surrounding countryside. The hiring of a local guide may not be strictly necessary, but in some cases, it may be unavoidable.

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