Ivory Coast

Earlier this year, Bike for Africa was welcomed by SOCFIN in Grand Béréby,  Ivory Coast, a beautiful rubber and palm oil plantation, for a 4 day long biking tour. It turned out to be an unforgettable experience for its participants, Brussels Airlines and Socfin staff and management alike. The plantation, a  concession of nearly 35 000 hectares of tropical agriculture, with  two thirds of that dedicated to rubber and the remainder to palm oil, and its well-maintained road system is a perfect environment to explore Africa at its best.

Within its premises, the plantation has its own rubber factory and a palm oil mill. Nearly 9000 people are employed directly and many more benefit from indirect employment. Socfin provides full health care support for its employees and their immediate families, supports the schools within the plantation and has a structural consultation process with all its stake holders in and around the plantation on  social, economic and environmental  performance.

The weather in January in Ivory Coast is pretty warm compared to Europe and cycling in 30°C plus temperatures from the first day was a challenge. But the beauty of the scenery, the typical African colors, the overwhelmingly friendly local people, quickly made us forget the physical effort we were confronted with. Hospitality in Ivory Coast is at its best and the cheering by young and old was that overwhelming that we all felt , just for a few days, like any professional biker in the Tour the France!

The Socfin Group is present in Africa, more specifically in Sierra Leone, Liberia, Ivory Coast, Nigeria, Cameroon and Congo DRC as well as in Asia, more specifically in Indonesia and Cambodia. The Group’s plantations produce palm oil and rubber. In Ivory Coast, the rubber (and palm) tree estate is called Société des Caoutchoucs de Grand-Béréby (SOGB).  

 

 

 

 

 

Explore the Programme

Tuesday 17 Jan 

  • Flight Brussels - Abidjan

  • Transfer from Abidjan to San Pedro and from there to the estate of SOGB 

  • Dinner 

Wednesday 18 Jan 

  • Bike ride of 65 km 
  • Lunch 
  • Visit the village of Heke, one of the social projects selected 
  • Dinner in Tiepe

Thursday 19 Jan

  • Preparation of the bikes 

  • Lunch

  • Discovery tour (45 km) 

  • Dinner in Kathoum hotel ​

Friday 20 Jan 

  • Bike ride towards sea (25 km)
  • Arrival at the beach of Mani-Béréby
  • Boat trip (pirogue) to Grand-Béréby
  • Lunch in Siren Bay and free time
  • Return and dinner in plantation 

Saturday 21 Jan 

  • Bike ride (34 km) through plantation 
  • Barbecue on the beach
  • Return to plantation, dinner and evening party  

Sunday 22 Jan 

  • Bike ride (30 km) 
  • End ceremony in the Boglros stadium 
  • Cocktails and dinner 
  • Bike disassembly
  • Return flight to Brussels  

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