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If you want to spend time at the beach, Ouidah is the only place to visit, but visitors should note that tides and currents can render the sea very dangerous and only the strongest swimmers should venture. Making for a real adventure holiday, this town also interests those cultural enthusiasts interested in the slave trade.
The Route d’Esclaves in Ouidah was the final journey on African soil for slaves bound for the Caribbean and Brazil and you can retrace their steps. Visit the museums on a journey through the era of slave trade and the resultant Afro-Brazilian society and culture that came about from the ethnic influences in Ouidah. Take a trip to the Portuguese fort, Temple of the Sacred Python and view the voodoo shrines in this town. The snake trade seems to be the new slave trade. On one side of Ouidah’s central square, the catholic basilica towers into the sky to represent the Christian influence, but the python temple on the other side draws more tourists.
Several shrines were built for offerings to the 'snake-god' Dagbe, but the biggest offerings come from the tourists who pay $1.50 to enter the Temple of the Sacred Python and undergo more expense to take photos with the snakes. Tourists negotiate fees in a small circular building full of pythons and many will testify that other types of “snakes” tend to swindle them out of their cash, but it is all part of a holiday to remember!