Africa > East Africa > Somalia > Somalia Tourism Profile

Somalia: Somalia Tourism Profile

2015/01/26

somalia tourism


Security threats and political instability

Somalia has been torn apart by civil unrest and war for additional than 15 years. Things started to improve next the Ethiopian army withdrew in 2007 next defeating the Islamist government, but since again, a return of violence to the streets of Somalia has shut down any hopes for the development of tourism once again. The hotel sector will remain with those hotels that rely heavily on the influx of government officials and representatives of the UN and other NGOs. The worrying security condition led to thousands of Somalis fleeing their homes in 2009, with 5,000 Somalis waiting at the Kenyan border to escape the violence. For the time being, the travel and tourism industry is being neglected, with this situation expected to continue until the country finds some level of political stability.

Travelling to Somalia regarded as dangerous

The war and recent pirate attacks have both made Somalia risky, leading a lot of nations such as the US, Australia, the UK and Egypt to issue travel warnings advising travellers about the hostile environment and dangerous consequences of visiting the country. Travelling to Somalia at the current time could result in critical violence, kidnappings or killings, particularly by pirates, which is the major problem in the country. Somalia’s travel and tourism industry is suffering tremendously, leaving only officials and government staff visiting the country.

Inbound arrivals on the decline

The vast majority of inbound, domestic and outbound tourism flows are made up of business tourism and there is limited leisure tourism in Somalia. Arrivals started to increase in 2005, and there was hope that the country would start to revive the travel and tourism industry, but due to kidnappings and piracy in subsequent years, inbound arrivals significantly declined between 2005 and 2009, and are expected to decrease further until the country finds stability.

Uncertain next for Mogadishu Airport

Aaden Cabdulle Cismaan International Airport in Mogadishu reopened its doors in 2006 for the initial time in a lot of years. In 2008, however, the airport was again under threat of closure due to bombings by Ethiopian forces. Two airlines fly to Mogadishu Airport, Daallo Airways, the only international carrier to fly in and out of Somalia, and Jubba Airways, a Somali airline. The airport needs large-scale development and development, a lot of flights are cancelled and airport facilities and services are very poor. The next of these developments depends on the security situation in Somalia. Air transportation will nevertheless continue to be the major mode of transportation due to the fact that the roads are dangerous and the infrastructure is in desperate need of development. There is as well a risk of piracy in Somali waters, which has brought a halt to sea transportation.