Au Jardin Helvetia (Logo), Link Home
Au Jardin Helvetia,  Hotel - Motel - Restaurant - Camping 
	- Jolie auberge et village de vacances 
	prix avantageux, situé 11km à l'ouest de Cotonou.
	- Preiswerte Hotel (Unterkunft, Übernachtung) und 
	Ferien-Anlage, 11 km westl. von Cotonou, Bénin. 
	- Nice holiday resort, direct at the beach, (hotel, 
	motel, accommodation), 11km west of Cotonou. Health Recommendations
 ©Heiner H. Schmitt
  Cotonou & Basel 

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Vers la version française


Institutes of Tropical Medicine

The best is, you inform you directly at your doctor of tropical disease,
or at one of the Institutes of Tropical Medicine in your country.

Deutsches Tropeninstitut, Bernhard Nocht Institut (BNI), Hamburg
Reisemedizinisches Zentrum - Klinische Abteilung - Tropeninstitut Hamburg
Seewartenst. 10
D - 20459 Hamburg / Germany

Tel.: +49  40 428 18 800 - Fax: +49  40 428 18 340
• Here you find general information of the BNI for journeys.
• On the page of information of the BNI about Bénin you will find not only information about health, but also a lot of interesting information about the country and also links to different sites of interest concerning Bénin.

Institut Pasteur, Paris
Institut de Médecine Tropicale
211, rue de Vaugirard
F - 75'015 Paris / France

Tel.: +33   1 40 61 3 - Fax: +33  xx xx xx
• Vaccinations (no rendez-vous) :
Monday 10:00 - 16:30, Tu until Fr 09:00 - 16:30, Saturday 09:00 - 11:30,
• Travel information, Health recommendations, Consultations after the return of a trip abroad. Institut Pasteur, conseils
Schweizerische Eidgenossenschaft
Schweizerisches Tropeninstitut (STI), Basel 
Socinstrasse 57
CH - 4002 Basel / Switzerland

Tel.: +41  61  284 81 11 - Fax:  +41  61 271 86 54
• Med. urgencies : +41  61 284 81 47
• Vaccination information :  0900 57 66 67 on tape, 1.49 Fr/Min.
• Vaccinations : Mo, Tu, Th 15:00 - 19:00, We & Fr 12:00 - 15:00
STI Medizinischer Service
Institut für Reise & Tropenmedizin Wien 
Univ. Prof. Dr. med Heinrich Stemberger
Lenaugasse 19
AT - 1080 Wien / Austria
Tel.: +43 1  402 68 60 0, Fax: +43 1  402 68 61 30
• Tel. information : Mo until Fr 08:00 - 19:00
• Vaccinations : Mo until Fr 08:30 - 11:30 & 16:00 - 19:00
• You will find information about tropical Africa at the Institut für Reise & Tropenmedizin/Afrikatropic.

There are also pages about Bénin with good advice and further recommendations
on the websites of some foreign ministries => Dipl. Representations

Additional information


  Requested vaccinations for Benin
  • Entry at the airport of Cotonou
    International vaccination certificate, with following entries : 
    • Yellow fever (valid for 10 years)
    • Cholera (valid for 6 months)
    On the airport the vaccination certificate for cholera will often be requested, even it is not according to the recommendations of the WHO.
  • Entry by road
    In general there are no vaccination papers requested at the entry by road .


  • There are four important species of Malaria, Malaria tropica (parasite : Plasmodium falsiparum), Malaria ovale, Malaria vivax (tertianae) and Malaria quartana. In the coastal region of Westafrica the Malaria tropica is mostly present. The female mosquitos (anopheles) suck the blood from an infected person, that contains the gametocytes (parasites). Those develop sexually in the intestine of the anopheles to sporozoites, which can pass through the wall of intestine into the gland of saliva of the mosquito. At the next blood meal of the anopheles on a human, the blood grinning will be suppressed by the saliva and at the same time the malaria brought in the blood circulation by the incoming sporozoites.

  • Prophylaxis
  • To make your stay here in Benin mostly comfortable, we recommend a prophylaxis with Nivaquine® (100mg/day Chloroquin) and Paludrine® (1 tablet twice per week). The prophylaxis should begin at the first day and be continued for 30 days after the return.

  • It has also to be made clear, that no absolute prevention exists. There is always a possibility to catch a malaria even taking the tablets regularly. The incubation time is 7 to 12 days. If you have some malaria symptoms after the return of a journey (Fever, Headache, Diarrhoea, pain in the joints), go immediatly for a visit to a doctor for tropical diseases or directly to a Tropical Institute. The non-specialised doctors often do not realise the symptoms.

  • Protect yourself well against the bites of the female Anopheles-mosquito from dusk by wearing clothes with long arms and a good repellent, like ExoPic8®, a Liposomale Lotion from Spirig (CH-4622 Egerkingen, Schweiz) or Autan®.

  • Always sleep under a mosquito net, they are installed almost everywhere, but may also be bought in Bénin.

  • Citronel Lotion, is a locally produced, a well-perfumed essence of citronella grass acts which also as a very well repellent. Citronel Tea in huge quantities helps also to protect preventive against mosquito bites.
  • In case you get infected, there is a good therapy with the medicament Coartem® of Novartis (in CH sold under the label Riamet®), which can be found in Cotonou in each pharmacy (ca. 3'000 FCFA for 8 tablets, 5000 FCFA for 16 tablets).
    In case of trips in the inner part of the country, you should it take with you for prevention. Be warned, the boxes in CH contain 24 tablets, here in Cotonou boxes for children (8 tablets) and such with 16 tablets are sold. Even the employees in the pharmacies often do not realise the difference.

  • In the following table the dosage prescription of the attached notice is presented in a readable overview.
     Coartem/Riamet  Number of tablets
      Initial dosage after
    8 h*)
    24 h*)
    48 h*)
    Under the control of a medical doctor :
    Children 05 - 14 kg 1 1 1 1 4
    Children 15 - 24 kg 2 2 2 2 8
    Children 25 - 34 kg 3 3 3 3 12
    Adults 4 4 4 4 16
    In cases of multiresistence and for auto medication
    (if there is no medical doctor available) :
      Initial dosage after *)
    8 h
    after *)
    12 + 24 h
    after *)
    36 + 48 h
    Children 10 - 14 kg 1 1 1 + 1 1 + 1 6
    Children 15 - 24 kg 2 2 2 + 2 2 + 2 12
    Children 25 - 34 kg 3 3 3 + 3 3 + 3 18
    Adults 4 4 4 + 4 4 + 4 24
    *) Counted as number of hours after having taken the initial dosage.

  • Before starting a therapy, a test should be made (if possible) or at least go and talk to a local doctor.
  • Since a certain time Malarone®, is on the market. We have heard from peoples about good experiences with this medicine. Unfortunately this medicine is also often prescribed for prevention. Thus, the resistance of the parasites against this medicine may rise with time. We therefore recommend Malarone for therapy only.
  • If you are taking some other medicine, inform yourself seriously about the side effects at a Tropical Institute concerning the prevention or therapy of malaria.
  • Strong medicine like Lariam® from Roche or Halfan® (ca. 5'000 FCFA) from SmthKlineBeecham should only be taken as a therapy and not for prevention, there have already some malaria resistances been seen.
    You can find some information about Mefloquin (Lariam®), diabetes and blood thinners (04.06.02) under Gesundes Reisen des BNI
    Recently the journals (Spiegel) reported some information about different side effects (deep depressions etc.) when using Lariam. Inform yourself about this medicine before taking the tablets.



Prophylaxis only !!!
  • Although sometime you can read in some spectacular statistics about a strong infection of the African population, it is probably much less in Bénin, exceptionally in red light areas.

  • Preservatives can be found in each pharmacy in the country.
    There is the same rule valid as at home "no exceptions" !
  • Viagra® from Pfizer (Price about 30'000 FCFA for 4 x 50 mg) can be found in any pharmacy in Cotonou ! Also Levitra® from Bayer and Cialis® from Eli-Lilly are available in many pharmacies.



  Other recommendations
  • The Water service is very good in all greater urban areas of the country. Mineral water is sold everywhere but also the usual drinking city-water is in general well prepared.

  • Fruits : Don't be concerned about fruits during your holidays! Never miss the wonderful taste of mangos, pineapples, chap-chap (corossol - variety of the annone) and naturally also the bananas, oranges und mandarines.

  • Vegetables and salads may be eaten without concern in the great restaurants. The salad is usually cleaned by Potassium permanganate before being served.

  • Ice-cream, Glace is sold here by Potassium on bikes. It's usually Fanmilk, and comes from a factory in Togo. It is packed in small plastic bags. Beyond the fact that, most of the time it's not frozen but only creamy, we didn't hear anything negative about it. The ice-cream in Jardin Helvetia is always freshly made, using fresh fruits and may be tasted without any harm.

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