CayenneCayenne is the largest city in and capital of French Guiana.
Cayenne is located on the Atlantic coast, on marshland surrounded by hills. The city was founded in 1643 by the French and was part of the Dutch, English and Portuguese colonial empire during the following century. Today a third of the department's inhabitants live in Cayenne. Downtown is small and the houses are typically Caribbean.
On Sundays, almost everything is closed. If you arrive on a Sunday, the only thing to do on your first vacation day is walking around in an almost deserted city.
ClimateThe climate is what you would expect this close to the Equator. The temperature is constant around +25-30°C while it's raining heavily for most of the year.
By planeFrench Guiana's main international airport is
Cayenne – Félix Eboué Airportlocated in the commune of Matoury, a southern suburb of Cayenne. There are two flights a day to Paris Orly Airport (not CDG) served by Air France and Air Caraïbes. Moreover there are flights from Martinique, Guadeloupe, Paramaribo and Belém.
There are no buses to the airport, so your alternatives are to rent a car or take a taxi (€35 to central Cayenne).
By roadFrom both neighboring countries, you will need to cross a river by ferry into French Guiana. From Brazil, you will arrive in Saint-Georges de l'Oyapock from where you can travel by bus to Cayenne with a transfer in Régina. From Suriname you will step off the ferry in Saint-Laurent-du-Maroni from where you can take a bus to Iracoubo and transfer to another going to Cayenne.
If you've brought a car, the road is paved from both borders towns to Cayenne.
- Cayenne has a public bus network of five lines. The fare is €1,10.
- Your other options are obviously car, taxi, foot or bike.
Place des PalmistesA park with high palm trees, lively in the nighttime.
Place des AmandiersA square frequented by young couples in the evening.
Jardin botaniqueThe well kept botanical garden of Cayenne is worth a visit.
Cayenne city hall
Cathédrale Saint-Sauveur de CayenneCayenne's cathedral is a major landmark, the seat of the Diocese of Cayenne and a National Monument of France.
phone: +594 29 59 13address: 1, avenue du général de GaulleA museum of the animals of the region, Amerindian and Creole art, and exhibitions about the history of French Guiana, daily life in the penal colony and the colonial administrator and humanist Félix Éboué, perhaps the most significant person from the region.
phone: +594 31 41 72address: 78, rue Madame PayéExhibitions of the daily life of the different populations in the region including traditional clothing and art, a reconstruction of a carbet (traditional shelter) as well as a documentation center.
Salines de MontjolyA conservation area consisting of a sand beach, dunes and a mangrove forest.
Fort DiamantA 19th century fort, nowadays a Monument Historique (French National Heritage Site).
CarnivalGuianese Carnival takes place between Epiphany in early January and Ash Wednesday in February or March. On the weekend people put on their carnival dresses and dance in the streets through the night. The most remarkable are the ladies' colorful touloulou dresses. The dancing groups show the ethnic diversity of French Guiana. In the main parade that is held on the last Sunday of the carnival dancing schools (similar to those in Rio de Janeiro) perform. The most famous of them are Chiré Band, Réno Band, Kassialata, Manaré and Piraye.
Le Marché aux légumesA place to buy local agricultural products, or just to expericence a lively market in the tropics.
Marché d'Intérêt RégionalAt the fish market you can buy fresh fish.
- For souvenir shopping head for the Trois Fontaines shops and other shops in the downtown. Good souvenirs are objects carved out of wood and exotic objects of art.
BudgetIn general the Chinese restaurants are the most affordable places to have a meal with dishes around €15-20. On Place des Palmistes there are also carts selling hamburgers and Javanese dishes.
Jin Le Yuanphone: +594 43 17 88address: 33 rue Lieutenant BrasseChinese restaurant.
Le Vrai Régalphone: +594 27 16 31address: 60 bd JubelinA sandwich joint.
Abribaphone: +594 31 98 73address: 33 rue des Dahlias (quartier Bonhomme)Creole restaurant
Icebergaddress: rue Lalouette
Hippopotamusphone: +594 27 40 16address: 23 rue Léon Gontrand Damas (place des Palmistes)French restaurant.
La Tavernephone: +594 29 04 66address: 26 rue MoleFrench restaurant.
Mille Pâtesphone: +594 28 91 80address: 52 rue Justin CatayéeFrench restaurant.
Bar des Palmistesphone: +594 300 050address: 12 av du Gén de Gaulle (place des Palmistes)Creole and French restaurant.
L'Entractephone: +594 30 01 37address: 65 r Justin CatayéeFrench restaurant.
La Petite Maisonphone: +594 38 58 39address: 23 r Félix EbouéFrench restaurant.
Le Paris Cayennephone: +594 31 76 17address: 59 rue LallouetteFrench cuisine, likely the finest restaurant in Cayenne.
Le Moonlight Discothèqueaddress: route de Montabo chemin Grant
Le Bar des PalmistesA bit expensive, for instance a Ricard is €5. This is however one of the few places open on Sunday.
La BodegaA small sympathetic bar with good ambience.
Le Lido Night
L'Iguana CaféAn air conditioned bar lounge in central Cayenne.
Hotel Ket TaiNothing fancy but clean and a few minutes walk from Place des Palmistes.
phone: +594 25 65 65address: rue Mole
phone: +594 28 83 00address: 28 Avenue du Général de Gaulle
phone: +594 303888address: Chemin Hilaire Rue De Montabo