Sierra Leone

Travel Facts

US State Dept Travel Advisory

The US Department of State currently recommends US citizens exercise increased caution in Sierra Leone due to crime and civil unrest. Consult its website via the link below for updates to travel advisories and statements on safety, security, local laws, and special circumstances in this country.

Passport/Visa Requirements

US citizens should make sure their passport will not expire for at least 6 months after they enter the country even if they do not intend to stay that long. They should also make sure they have at least 1 blank page in their passport for each entry stamp/visa that will be required. A visa is required. US citizens will need to get in touch with the country’s embassy or nearest consulate to obtain a visa prior to visiting the country.

US Embassy/Consulate

+(232) (99)105-000; EMER: +(232)(99) 905-029; U S Embassy Freetown, Southridge, Hill Station, Freetown, Sierra Leone;;

Telephone Code


Local Emergency Phone

Ambulance: 999; Fire: 019; Police: 999


An International Certificate of Vaccination for yellow fever is required for all travelers. See WHO recommendations. On 21 March 2022, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a Travel Alert for polio in Africa; Sierra Leone is currently considered a high risk to travelers for polio; the CDC recommends that before any international travel, anyone unvaccinated, incompletely vaccinated, or with an unknown polio vaccination status should complete the routine polio vaccine series; before travel to any high-risk destination, CDC recommends that adults who previously completed the full, routine polio vaccine series receive a single, lifetime booster dose of polio vaccine.


Tropical; hot, humid; summer rainy season (May to December); winter dry season (December to April)

Currency (Code)

Leones (SLL)

Electricity/Voltage/Plug Type(s)

230 V / 50 Hz / plug types(s): D, G

Plug Type DPlug Type G

Major Languages

English, Mende, Temne, Krio

Major Religions

Muslim 77.1%, Christian 22.9%

Time Difference

UTC 0 (5 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)

Potable Water

Opt for bottled water

International Driving Permit


Road Driving Side


Tourist Destinations

Mount Bintumani; Tacugama Chimpanzee Sanctuary; Martello Tower; National Railway Museum; Tokeh Beach; Turtle Islands; Lakka Beach

Major Sports

Soccer, basketball, cricket, boxing, baseball

Cultural Practices

Hissing is the accepted way of gaining someone's attention in public.

Tipping Guidelines

Tips at restaurants are typically not expected, but appreciated. Tipping at hotels is somewhat expected, but at your discretion.


Tribal art and ceremonial masks, woven baskets, pottery, handmade precious metal and stone jewelry, tailored clothing, bush-medicine items

Traditional Cuisine

Cassava leaf stew — a stew made with finely shredded Cassava leaves added to a palaver sauce made using red palm oil mixed with ingredients such as onions, pepper, fish, meat, and vegetables

Please visit the following links to find further information about your desired destination.

World Health Organization (WHO) - To learn what vaccines and health precautions to take while visiting your destination.

US State Dept Travel Information - Overall information about foreign travel for US citizens.

To obtain an international driving permit (IDP). Only two organizations in the US issue IDPs:
American Automobile Association (AAA) and American Automobile Touring Alliance (AATA)

How to get help in an emergency? 
Contact the nearest US embassy or consulate, or call one of these numbers:
from the US or Canada - 1-888-407-4747 or from Overseas - +1 202-501-4444

Page last updated: Wednesday, October 05, 2022