French Guiana in

One Week

Start in Cayenne, making sure to visit the market, stroll the streets and to eat out often. Drive to Cacao on a Sunday for the Laotian market. If there's a shuttle launch in Kourou, email the Centre Spatial Guyanais to secure an invitation to see it, then try to work in an overnight visit to the Îles du Salut that won't conflict with the launch (the islands are closed the day before and after a launch). Spend a final day or two exploring the prison camps in St Laurent du Maroni.

Two Weeks

Base yourself in Cayenne for the first week and take a day trip to Cacao on a Sunday for the Laotian market. Make sure you visit the Îles du Salut and the Centre Spatial Guyanais at Kourou during that time. Then take a two-night tour of Kaw, where you'll stay on a floating lodge, and look for black caiman and a huge array of bird species including scarlet ibis. After this, head to Awala-Yalimopo to watch nesting turtles if the season is right or otherwise to enjoy some beach time in this traditional Amerindian village. Finish up with a couple of nights in St Laurent du Maroni, where you can visit two spooky abandoned prison camps and take a river tour to explore Maroon culture.