Most interesting landmarks of Burkina Faso

Below are listed the most amazing natural and man made landmarks of Burkina Faso.

Natural landmarks of Burkina Faso

Fabedougou Domes, Burkina Faso
Fabedougou Domes / Marco Schmidt, / CC BY-SA 3.0
  • Fabedougou Domes – Cascades. Amazing limestone formations which in some places look like numerous domes located close together.
  • Sindou Peaks – Cascades. Group of spectacular sandstone cliffs which resemble ruins of giant structures.
  • Tengrela Falls (Kerfiguela Falls, Banfora Falls) – Cascades. Waterfall with many cascades, total height – some 50 m.

Man made landmarks of Burkina Faso

Rock paintings, engravings
  • Maadaga rock paintings – Est. Two rock shelters with abstract rock paintings.
  • Markoye rock engravings – Sahel. Group of sites (Sorbaïa, Tondo Banda and Béribéra) with rock engravings, created in the time period between the 7th and 12th centuries AD.
  • Pobé Mengao rock engravings – Sahel. Group of archaeological monuments – rock art (before the 12th century AD), group of mounds and other monuments.
Ancient burials
  • Bourzanga necropolis – Centre-Nord. Several groups of burials, which include large jars made by Dogons, 109 steles.
  • Kampti shrines – Sud-Ouest. Site with numerous fetish statues, center of local animists. Cult of sacrifice still continues, locals have numerous stories of apparitions and unusual events.
  • Obiré sanctuaries – Sud-Ouest. Group of 27 rectangular sanctuaries – burials of Gan kings.
Ancient settlements
Granaries in Old Niansogoni, Burkina Faso
Granaries in Old Niansogoni / Marco Schmidt, / CC BY-SA 3.0
  • Douna Caves (Turka de Douna) – Cascades. Group of small caves with archaeological importance. Some caves are sacred and uninitiated visitors can not enter them. Caves are differentiated – some were used as dwellings, some – for the rituals of sorcerer.
  • Loropéni Ruins – Sud-Ouest. Ruins of fortified settlement. This gold trade town existed since the 11th century or earlier and was abandoned in the early 19th century. Area is enclosed by a stone wall which is up to 6 m tall.
  • Old Niansogoni (Niansoroni) – Cascades. Ancient village which developed since the 12th century AD and is abandoned since the 1980s. Under the rock overhang have been preserved granaries and other structures made from clay. Some of these giant "ceramic vessels are ornamented.
Contemporary settlements, cities
  • Lobi soukala – Sud-Ouest. Group of traditional mud buildings in large, rectangular compound, reinforced with high wall. Here live members of one family. Village has even its own sanctuary with fetish statues.
  • Sya – Hauts-Bassins, Bobo-Dioulasso. Historical center of the Bobo-Dioulasso, with many structures built in local style. Includes several interesting features including Dafra – sacred pool, where the offerings are consumed by giant catfish.
  • Tiébélé – Centre-Sud. Village with typical, highly unusual architecture. Contains Tiébélé Royal Court – area which is encircled with a wall and contains altar of ancestors, sacred stones, cemetery of ancestors and other important features. The contrasting colors of walls are repainted every year after the harvest – this design was created in the 16th century or earlier.
Bani Grand Mosque, Burkina Faso
Bani Grand Mosque / Chiappinik, / CC BY 3.0
  • Bani Grand Mosque – Boucle du Mouhoun. Large and ornate mosque in Sudano-Sahelian style. There are seven wonderful mosques in Bani.
  • Bobo Dioulasso Grand Mosque – Hauts-Bassins. Large mosque in Sudano-Sahelian style, built in 1882 (1883?).
Other man made landmarks of Burkina Faso
  • Bobo-Dioulasso train station – Hauts-Bassins. Ornate train station, built in Sudanese style in the 1930s.
  • Manega Museum – Plateau-Central. Museum of African mysteries, including artefacts of unknown cultures, tools of sorcerers and similar items.

Described landmarks of Burkina Faso

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This large country is comparatively little known but nevertheless – charming and with numerous interesting mysteries.

Most interesting landmarks in Burkina Faso are:

  • Archaeological monuments – abandoned towns, fortifications, necropolises and sanctuaries. In earlier times Burkina Faso was important source of gold, ivory and other valuable goods, here evolved smaller kingdoms and trade towns.
  • Traditional architecture – Burkinabé (people of Burkina Faso) have their own style of architecture which is very unusual and beautiful. Some of most interesting buildings are found in Tiébélé village, impressive are the mosques in Bani.

Featured: Bobo Dioulasso Grand Mosque

Bobo Dioulasso Grand Mosque
Bobo Dioulasso Grand Mosque / Geri, / CC BY-SA 2.0

The amazing Bobo Dioulasso Grand Mosque is impressive representative of the traditional Sudano-Sahelian architecture, most likely – the largest building in this style in Burkina Faso. It was built in the end of the 19th century as a result of political deal between local king and Islamic religious leader.

Recommended books

Burkina Faso Art and Culture

Burkina Faso society and culture is an extremely interesting topic of investigation and study. A French-speaking country in West Africa, Burkina Faso has many ethnic groups and tribes that make up the society of the country. Two key elements for the culture of Burkina Faso (a country once known as Upper Volta) are its indigenous masks and dancing.

Burkina Faso (Bradt Travel Guides)

From balafon players in the laidback town of Bobo-Dioulasso to masters of horsemanship further north―plus internationally recognized film, jazz, hip hop, and craft festivals―landlocked Burkina Faso, in the heart of West Africa, has something to offer everyone.

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