Archipelago Adventure

Guinea-Bissau – Archipelago Adventure – an 8- day Small Group Tour.

Guinea-Bissau’s sovereign history has been more chaotic than many, characterised by a series of coup d’etats, border conflicts, criminality, corruption and civil unrest. No elected leader has served a full term since independence in 1974.

However, a corner was turned in 2014 when fresh presidential elections saw Jose Mario Vaz win by a landslide. New confidence saw investors and international donors return, injecting cash to revive the economy. Tourism today is a nascent industry in Guinea-Bissau and a concept that’s sometimes misunderstood. That said, as well as a colonial legacy the country has immense indigenous cultural reserves and areas of breath-taking natural beauty on its mainland and among its remarkable offshore islands.

To visit Guinea-Bissau is to experience a concentrated dose of West African extremes. Are you ready?

Guinea-Bissau is one of the smallest, and least visited, countries in Africa – few western travellers make it to this former Portuguese colony, but those that do return full of incredible experiences and memories of a stunning part of the continent.

Starting in Bissau, we travel by boat to the magnificent Bijagos Islands – a group of islands where traditional culture is at its strongest and ancient customs still hold sway. We visit local communities to learn about their lifestyles, some of the most traditional on the continent. We also search for the elusive saltwater hippos as well as other wildlife, and sail between idyllic islands on a true journey of discovery. The joy of this trip is the fact that you will be visiting an almost untouched corner of Africa; expect truly genuine encounters with local people and feel privileged to be one of the very few to have travelled here.

Tour ratings.

  • Fitness
  • Off the beaten track 
  • Culture
  • History
  • Wildlife (Oct. & Nov.)
  • Wildlife (Rest of the year)

Tour Pace


Tour style


Relaxed Pace

Relaxed tours are easy paced with plenty of leisure time built in. The tour will in all probability still be off the beaten track, with the occasional early start and there may still be occasional long drives. In general on a relaxed pace tour you can enjoy easy-going activities and experiences with opportunities to absorb the sights and immerse yourself in the local surroundings.

Moderate Pace

Moderate pace tours are ideal if you want a tour experience that combines activities and experiences with some time to relax. Typically you will be active and busy for part of the day but then also have time to rest and recharge your batteries. In general on a moderate paced tour there may be some long journeys involved but the tour is not an expedition or a road trip. On a moderate paced tour it will be necessary to have some early starts.

Busy Pace

A busy paced tour means that you can expect to be doing, seeing or experiencing something new almost every day, and moving on from place to place to pack in as much as possible. There may be early starts, long journeys and tiring days along the way, but you’ll return home feeling you’ve really experienced as much as you possibly could.

Pioneer Class Tours

On our Pioneer tours, you will be amongst an elite group of intrepid travellers and some of the first to explore a country that few have been privileged enough to discover. Of course, exploring such areas of the world will come with its challenges; it may mean several nights camping, long journeys by 4WD and the need to maintain a degree of flexibility for when carefully laid plans change. These are challenging tours in countries and areas that may have poor infrastructure, high levels of poverty and illiteracy. This can translate in to low standards in hotels, bad roads and poor driving standards among other issues. We try and smooth out as much of these issues as we can but you should be prepared to experience the bad with the good.

Traveller Class Tours

Our Traveller itineraries are at the core of our programme. These journeys are designed for travellers who still want to discover a land away from the tourist crowds but expect minimum standards. Accommodation will be primarily hotel based, although you could still find yourself camping, or the guest of a local family. Depending on the destination and itinerary, you’ll likely be travelling in a private vehicle, with occasional use of public transport. This is adventure travel with some of the rough edges smoothed out.


(14 km / approx. 30m)

Arrive into Bissau and transfer to your hotel. No meals or activities included today. Overnight Dunia Hotel or similar.

(approx. 3hrs)

This morning take a short city tour of Bissau before departing by boat for Orango National Park in the heart of the Bijagos Archipelago. Overnight at Orango Parque Hotel or similar (BLD)

(5km / approx. 3hrs walk)

Take a walk in the forest with a with a local eco-guide to the village of Eticoga,  known for its sanctuary where Queen Okinka Pampa and her family rests. As a place of veneration, it regularly hosts rituals in the company of her descendants and villagers. We visit the women’s association and their handicraft and horticultural work. Overnight at Orango Parque Hotel or similar (BLD)

(20km / 2hr boat and approx. 2hr of walking)

Beach to beach boat trip in the presence of eco guides then continue by foot through the mangrove and savannah to Anor Lake and its freshwater pockets. Spend some time at the lake with a picnic lunch before returning to our hotel. Overnight Orango Parque Hotel or similar (BLD)

(4hr boat and walking)

A large palm grove announces the arrival at the oldest part of the National Park, where the most important ceremonies on the island take place. Enjoy the traditional dance “Canhocan”, characteristic of the young bijagós warriors, in a perfect combination of their culture with nature where these people live their everyday life. After lunch we head to Ponta Anchaca Lodge. Overnight Ponta Anchaca Lodge or similar (BLD)

Excursion to Joao Vieira, the island of orchids. During the crossing, we may be lucky to spot some dolphins. Continue to the uninhabited Island of Poilao, the first nesting site for green turtles on the entire West African coast. Overnight at Ponta Anchaca Lodge or similar (BLD)

After a leisurely morning we transfer back to Bissau by boat. Overnight Dunia Hotel or similar (BD)

You will be transferred to the airport for your departure flight (B)

Dates & Price.

Tour Notes

Single supplement starts from £695

Return flights to Bissau from London start from £800 per person. Please contact us if you would like us to arrange flights for you.

You can combine this tour with our Senegal – Coast and Delta Explorer tour. Please contact us for more information.

Mapped itinerary.

Want to see details of your itinerary on a map?

Download PDF.

Download the full tour dossier for this trip here.

For expert advice get in touch now with our passionate,
well-travelled team.

+44(0) 191 296 2674 from THE UK
1-800-614-2967 from THE US & CANADA
1-300-956-415 from AUSTRALIA

Tour inclusions.

  • Arrival and departure transfers
  • All accommodation
  • Transport as indicated.
  • Services of English speaking guide / tour leader
  • Meals as listed (B – Breakfast, L – Lunch, D – Dinner)
  • Entrance fees for sites listed as part of the itinerary

Tour exclusions.

  • International flights
  • Any airport taxes
  • Travel Insurance
  • Visas
  • Drinks
  • Expenses of personal nature

This was a fabulous tour of a truly undiscovered destination. Far exceeding my expectations, this was one of the best trips to Africa that I have ever done. Guinea-Bissau is such a beautiful country, with interesting history, lively ceremonies, lovely people and (surprisingly for a country that sees so few tourists) absolutely no hassle on the streets.


Lynn, UK