For a much needed commune with nature after a few days in the Senegalese capital, set your sights westward towards the uninhabited Isles des Madeleines. Your first adventure will be finding a ride, which can be negotiated with the local fishermen who launch from the beaches just off Route de la Corniche Ouest. After a 15 minute douse with Atlantic salt water (compliments of your rickety motor boat), you'll be deposited on a serene island oasis, complete with a private cove, rocky shores and an unbeatable view of Dakar in the distance. Madeleines is small, so just head out on foot and explore the shrub covered island until the heat inevitably drives you back to the clear waters of the cove, where you can swim until your ride home arrives. It's truly a beautiful and welcome reprieve from city living, and one of Dakar's hidden natural gems.