French Guiana, South America - Stein Travel

    • 16+ years

    • 12-15 years

    • 2-11 years

    • 0-23 months

Welcome to French Guiana

On the north coast of South America, French Guiana is part of the French Republic and visitors to this region can experience a world of foreign cultures, sights and cuisine. The capital city of French Guiana is Cayenne, a very picturesque holiday destination, and the Center Spatial Guyanais (space centre) in the city of Kourou is another popular attraction. French Guiana was originally inhabited by indigenous Americans and settled by the French in the 17th century. Today it is administered by a French representative based in Cayenne. As part of the European Union, the currency used in French Guiana is the Euro, and the main industries are fishing, gold mining and timber, while eco-tourism is a growing enterprise. The French Guiana population of 221,500 is made up of various ethnicities, the majority being Guianese Creole, Maroon, Amerindian and French. Most people in French Guiana inhabit the coastal areas, which are more developed. While French is the official language, Creole is widely spoken. The main religion is Roman Catholic but the Maroons and Amerindians have their own religions.


The international access code for French Guiana is +594. The outgoing code is 00 followed by the relevant country code (e.g. 0044 for the United Kingdom).


Social mores and etiquette in French Guiana reflect its colonial history. European values permeate French Guianese society, and western travellers - if they ignore the heat - should feel just at home as they would in one of the metropoles.

Duty Free

Visitors to French Guiana may import the following without incurring duty: 1,000 cigarettes, one bottle of liqour, and an amount of perfume, film, and gifts reasonable for personal use.

The electric current is 220 volts (50 Hz), and round two- or three-prong plugs are used.

A yellow fever vaccination is necessary when visiting French Guiana.

The official language is French, and Guianese Creole is widely spoken.

The French Guiana currency is the Euro (EUR).

Passport Visa

All visitors to French Guiana must hold an onward or return ticket and valid travel documentation for their next destination; as well as sufficient funds to cover their stay in the country, or a lodging certificate. Schengen Visas are also valid for French Guiana, provided they are endorsed "also valid for French Guiana." A yellow fever vaccination certificate is required to enter French Guiana. NOTE: It is highly recommended that your passport has at least six months validity remaining after your intended date of departure from your travel destination. Immigration officials often apply different rules to those stated by travel agents and official sources.

The time zone in French Guiana is GMT -3.

For visitors to French Guiana, one of the best known attractions is the Centre Spatial Guyanais (Guiana Space Centre), a French space centre near the coastal town of Kourou. Operational since 1968, the Guiana Space Centre is used by the CNES (French space agency), the European Space Agency and Arianespace (a commercial company) to conduct their launches. There are regular guided tours of the site available for visitors.

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