INSPIRATION

24 Hours in Monrovia - Edith Kimani

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Edith is a celebrated Kenyan journalist and part of the influential 100 Young Africans. Beyond journalism, she's a dynamic moderator at global events and an avid traveller, blending storytelling prowess with a keen journalistic eye.

From the lush mangroves to the electrifying markets and seemingly never-ending coastline, Monrovia, the capital city of Liberia, promises to activate all your senses. 

To stay: you have many options with modest decor and facilities. If you fancy being at the beach, why not try Tropicana Beach and Resort? However, if you need to be in the centre of the action, give Cape Hotel a shot, or the older, more established Mamba Point Hotel, which is next door. Both hotels overlooking the Atlantic Ocean offer unmatched views of the sunset.

To eat: if you are a foodie, you will love the open-air food vendors that are scattered throughout the city. Expect to hear Koloqua, the local dialect, and slurping sounds all around you. Liberian dishes are served super spicy, so brace yourself before trying the goat pepper soup, which includes bits of fish and chicken, or Liberian's take on Jollof rice.

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Relax: at any of the beach clubs along the main highway to the airport. As infrastructure development is still low, leave early to avoid congestion on the main road that links the airport to the city. Enjoy "Hipco," a form of hip-hop in local dialects with killer bars on political messaging as the crashing waves soothe you. The country boasts nearly 600 km of coastline along the Atlantic Ocean, so you'll be spoilt for choice.

Interact: with the friendly locals at any of the many markets littering the city. Take a tuk-tuk to maximise airflow in the humid city and enjoy the sounds of loudspeakers commonly used for advertising at every corner. You'll find second-hand wigs, toys, and spoons at the open-air markets, as Liberia imports almost all its consumables. And if you want to learn Koloqua expressions, "my teeth sharp" means one is hungry. 

Indulge: in one of the largest remaining areas of tropical rainforest in West Africa by visiting the Sapo National Park. An aerial view of the country reveals lush greenery sliced by rivers and lagoons. Alternatively, go back in time to Providence Island, the landing site of the first group of formerly enslaved people.

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