French Guiana

Get to know French Guiana

A kingdom of forests, rivers and animals, French Guiana seduces all nature lovers. Located between the Republic of Suriname and Brazil, French Guiana is, with its 90,000km², the most vast, but also the only French department on the South American continent.

The population is essentially concentrated in the towns of Cayenne, Kourou, and Saint-Laurent. The temperatures remain between 27°C and 32°C (~80° - 90°F) throughout the year. However, the two rainy seasons (November to February, and April to June) are very humid.

A paradise for ecotourism, Guiana is situated in northwest South America, between Suriname and Brazil. Traveling the Maroni allows one to discover the Amazon forest, as well as the pleasure of being able to share the culture, and the way of life of the river people.

In the southwest of Cayenne, the marshlands of Kaw are a veritable nature reserve, with around 100,000 hectares (~250,000 acres) at the depths of the mountain. Guiana presents a great opportunity to observe nature, easily accessible thanks to the presence of fauna and flora specialists. Finally, do not miss the carnival, the period of festivities that brings the Guyanese capital to life.

European Spatial Center in Kourou

Here, the dream is inevitably immense. The first symbol of this is the European Spatial Center in Kourou, which helps to open the doors of knowledge of the universe.

Back down to earth, but with a very aquatic ambiance, “soft” exploration of the marshlands of Kaw and Sinnamary will provide a window into the exotic countryside. These protected areas, at the heart of a very young and vast regional natural park, constitute the ideal sanctum of the Caiman, and is also home to the dazzling Scarlet Ibis, an emblematic bird.

The “tropical version” of the Atlantic seashore mixes it up again, with its zones of mangrove, or its nesting Luth tortoise, which holds a world record for being the biggest anywhere. The beautiful beaches of the small islands of Salut are rocked by the trade winds. On the coast, one can also “flee” off shore, which is to say to embark on a fishing trip in the same area where the first world championship was held.

Another not to miss ocean destination, is where the intensely verdant sea stretches the Maroni and Oyapock rivers, between Suriname and Brazil. The uncivilized forest is not actually as hostile as one would imagine!

Patchwork of cultures

This French department is also very exotic in the patchwork of its cultures. Here you find a cohabitation of the Amerindians (Wayanas, Emerillons, etc.), and the groups from various parts of Africa, Martinique or Asia. It is a mixture of “noirs-marrons”, where more recent diasporas make for all the charm and the beautiful singularity of Cayenne and Guiana’s Latino-Creole, allowing for direct access to exchange and discovery.

Don't miss

  • Saint-Laurent and le Maroni
  • Les Iles du Salut and the ruins of the Bagne (penal colony)
  • The French Guiana Space Center and the Kourou Musée de l’Espace (Space Museum)
  • Cayenne and its carnival
  • The marshlands at Kaw and their fauna

Useful information

  • Main town:Cayenne
  • Entry formalities:On arrival, you will be asked to show a passport
  • Currency:Euro
  • Climate:Equatorial, but tempered by the trade winds. The temperature is on average around 26°C (~79°F), with max temperatures around 32°C (~90°F).