5 Most Difficult to visit African Countries for Foreigners

Planning a trip to Africa? Some countries are strict on foreigners’ access to their countries. Here’s the 5 most difficult countries for foreigners to enter. Have you been to one of these countries recently? Are the rules still as stringent as mentioned below or have some of these countries eased up a little?

5. Somalia

Somalia is located in the horn of Africa and has a population of approximately 10 million people. Due to prevailing unrest in the country, travel to Somalia is currently considered risky via the capital region. Foreigners, therefore, tend to visit the North West region of Somalia, known as Somaliland.

How to get to Somaliland:

  1. Fly to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
  2. Have your Visa upon arrival to the airport.
  3. Validity of your passport is checked (It is recommended to have at least 6 months of remaining validity on your passport for travel to Somaliland)
  4. Availability of blank visa pages is checked. (Recommended to have at least two blank pages in Visas section). Visas are valid for 7 days.
  5. Must possess a return flight ticket
  6. Sea and airports are under the control of the local government which means that entry requirements vary across the country.
[Source 1] [Source 2]

4. Sao Tome and Principe

Sao Tome and Principe is a beautiful island country located off the west coast of Central Africa. It is difficult to find information online about getting a visa for Sao Tome and Principe. From what I have been able to gather you need formal permission from the Ministry to enter the country or you may not be allowed entry into the country!

The two main ways to get a tourist visa for Sao Tome and Principe:

  1. Option 1: Contact a travel agent to do everything for you
  2. Option 2: Apply through your local consulate/embassy


3. Central African Republic

The best way to find out how to get into The Central African Republic is to call the relevant Embassy and ask them directly what the latest paperwork and fees is required.

2. Guinea-Bissau

To get a visa to enter Guinea-Bissau, you will need to do one of the following:

  1. Go to either Lisbon, Portugal and get it the same day (expensive option)
  2. Go to Ziguinchor, Senegal and get it at the Guinea-Bissau Consulate (recommended option)


1. Libya

Libya is the toughest place in Africa to enter as a foreigner!

If you are planning to visit Libya then you will go through the following procedure:

  • All tourists need to apply for a visa via an accredited tour operator in Libya
  • You will be asked to send a copy of your passport,  dates of travel, flight details, personal contact information, etc.
  • The tour operator will then file all your paperwork with the Libya Immigration Department, who will issue a permission letter (usually in Arabic) that you will need to bring with you on your trip.
  • This letter is your official authorization for a visa to enter into Libya.

What other countries have you been to in Africa, that are hard to access as a foreigner?

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