Bandiagara Travel Guide

  • Bandiagara
    by hannette
  • Bandiagara
    by hannette
  • Bandiagara
    by hannette

Bandiagara Things to Do

  • Excellent guide for Dogon Country, Mali...

    Moussa Timbine' is an excellent tour guide in Mali. He lives in Bamako but will go all over the country. He is also Dogon, and a wonderful guide for seeing Dogon country. His English is excellent.He has trained extensively for his job, and has a good understanding of different nationalities and what they expect as tourists. He is therefore in a...

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  • Dogon mask dance

    Spend a night out here and chances are you will be offered a chance to see a dance. Next to beer sales to tourists..this is probably the local villages/chiefs next most profitable source of income. The dance lasts 30 minutes or so and includes most of the folks in the village....Kinda touristy? Yes? Worth watching? Why not..you're in Africa. Your...

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  • Treking

    From Bandiagara you will catch a cab or motorcycle to one of the trail heads. I think we stopped at Dourou for lunch and to visit the market prior to heading out on the plateau to Begnimato which is a 4 mile hike and probably the most fun as once you get down off the plateau it is pretty much flat and sandy. Here you will be able to do some rock...

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  • Arroyo floor below the escarpment

    At the bottom of the escarpment is a decent place to eat with a view from a shaded rooftop area. There are several vendors selling dusty old dogon artwork and they can be bargined for. The problem for the bigger souvenirs though may be transporting them out of the area. Make sure your guide is trustworthy for handling these precious items because...

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  • The Hike: Descending the Escarpment

    At road's end, hiker's traverse first through a village with stone houses. There are few provisions here, so it's better to have these things purchased and brought from Bandiagara, as per previous tip. Walk through the village and proceed across shallow soiled agricultural plots and bare rock to the edge of the escarpment. The actual descent is a...

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  • Dogon Logistics: Escarpment Descent

    In Bandiagara, it's recommended that a guide and encampmente package be worked out. Normally, a contract that includes food, encampement, and if necessary, donkey cart be agreed upon. The guides have albums of pictures and reference letters, which should be in the language you are familiar with. That is, some guides aren't capable enough in English...

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  • Dogon country, Benigmato

    Day 4 of 4In this village, Benigmato ended our wonderful trek. It's was a great but tough experience

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  • Dogon country, Dogon myth

    Day 4 of 4The myth of the Dogon quickly faded away when the guide said we could take pictures and offer him some money.

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  • Dogon country, the Hogon

    Day 4 of 4Early this morning we went to visit the Hogon, that's a holy man who lives in seclusion high in the mountains. The villagers bring him food and drinks and he only comes down to speak justice.

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  • Dogon country, Ende

    Day 3 of 4In the late afternoon, we arrived in Ende where we could witness a local market. It was very colourful and cheap.

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  • Dogon country; toguna

    Day 3 of 4After the hot trek, we could rest in a toguna. That's sort of an open air conference room for the village wise. The toguna is especially built very low so that the arguing can't be too fierce. If you jump up durin one of your arguments, you hit your head against the roof and... immediately cool off

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  • Dogon country, my bed

    Day 2 of 4Wel, this is where I slept - on the wooden bed on the right. Some of my trekking fellows did bring a tent....

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  • Dogon Country, Tellem Houses

    Day 2 of 4We visited the Tellem Houses - the houses of the original inhabitants of Le Pays Dogon. They all have moved to the plains now.

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  • Dogon Country, Tellem Houses

    Day 2 of 4We visited the Tellem Houses - the houses of the original inhabitants of Le Pays Dogon. They all have moved to the plains now.

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  • Dogon Country, Tellem Houses

    Day 2 of 4We visited the Tellem Houses - the houses of the original inhabitants of Le Pays Dogon. They all have moved to the plains now.

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  • Dogon Country, Chameleon

    Day 2 of 4This was the first time in my life, I saw a real chameleon. The little animal was not very shy

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  • Dogon Country, Telli - ladder

    Day 2 of 4In the late afternoon, we walked to Telli.The wooden pillar you see standing there are the steps to the platform where you can sleep.I can assure you that, at night, it's not an easy climb down if you have to pee

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  • Dogon Country, Catholic Church

    Day 1 of 4This was the only Catholic Church in Dogon Country - look at the banner of the Holy Year, 2000.

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Bandiagara Restaurants

  • flynboxes's Profile Photo

    by flynboxes Written Jan 21, 2009

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Rice and chicken, rice and chicken with sauce.....
    These are pretty much your options here at the camp sites. I'm not knocking it as it was filling after a day spent hiking thru the sandy trails. The spice up the sauce and will add sweet potatos to it which tends to make it even more filling. They may even have spaghetti in place of rice in some places. If you need some variation..you will find local markets along the way with some fresh fruit and other produce. Pick some up and you should have no problems getting them to cook it up for you at your camp site. As with the rest of Mali the chickens are of the skinny sort here and makes your wonder what they feed them with back home

    Favorite Dish: Pick something up at the market if you get tired of the rice and chicken.

    Lunch time
    Related to:
    • Backpacking
    • Hiking and Walking

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Bandiagara Transportation

  • Motor bike

    Thanks to cheap Japanese/Chinese imports, the world has gotten a bit smaller for some Africans. At most came site you can find a local with one who will give you are ride for a few bucks. I got on one because I had to catch my ride back to Bandiagara pronto after a long lunch. No helmets here but the sand that you will be riding on is soft so if...

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  • Dogon Donkey Cart

    Below the escarpment tourists either walk and have a backup 4-wheel drive, or they use a donkey cart. I like the donkey cart because the 4-wheel drive is expensive and unnecessary. At the foot of the escarpment, the guide or you can make arrangements for a donkey cart to put your gear. If you buy souvenirs, then you'll need the cart for sure. In...

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  • How to go to the pays du Dogon

    The city of choice from where you can reach Bandiagara is Sévaré or the nearby more touristic Mopti. There are shared Taxis or some Minibusses making the way from Sévaré to Bandiagara. Ask at the "busstation" in Sévaré. To go to Sévaré comming from Mopti is no problem, as there is relativly dense traffic on this route. You will be able to find a...

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Bandiagara Shopping

  • Local markets

    You can get everything from fresh roasted goat here to kola nuts and other made in China junk. The meat markets are interesting....you can get your extra dose of protein from all the flys swarming around. This where the locals shop so you will see more practical things such as food and cookware for sale here rather than the masks and other tourist...

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  • Choosing Dogon Artwork

    At the foot of the escarpment is a great place to bargain for carved wooden Dogon artwork. The doors and masks are extremely popular, but don't expect it to be as old as it looks. Dirt and dust cover much of the work, which can be easily cleaned off once back home. However, examine the wood pieces carefully for presence of wood bores. These tiny...

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  • Bandiagara Hotels

    0 Hotels in Bandiagara

Bandiagara Local Customs

  • Kola nuts, etc.....

    All the guide books and some of the local tour agencies advise you to bring Kola nuts for the local village hogans or chiefs.....I saw plenty of people doing this. I on the other hand did not.Most of these villages in Dogon country have tourist camps with an array of amenties. Most also have coolers with water, soda and beer. Some of the cheifs do...

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  • Dogon Village Architecture

    The modern Dogon people living in this remote area still live more or less as they have for centuries. The unique conical buildings with thatched roofs and carved doors are particularly interesting for architecture and anthopology fans. The doors have locks, and the many symbolic elements provide protection for the inhabitants.

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  • The Telem Architecture isn't Dogon

    Before the Dogon tribes drove them out, the pigmy Telem peoples populated the escarpment. Their considerable mud architecture still hangs on cliff side voids in the escarpment, in a way similar to the pueblo architecture of Mesa Verde, a place more familiar to Americans. The architecture hangs in a far more precarious manner than I've ever seen in...

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Bandiagara Warnings and Dangers

  • Transportation from Bandiagara to Koro

    Those heading on to Koro and Burkina Faso should consider carefully their transportation options. We left on a Sunday and were obligated to hire a car and driver. After negotiating the consider sum of $35 for a 4 two hour trip (gas is expensive in Mali), the van was loaded, and just outside of town the vehicle broke an axle. The driver said, "no...

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  • Choose your guide carefully

    Even in Segou and Mopti, guides pleaded to return to their "home" in Dogon Country, showing us photo albums and reference letters. Yet, the costs of keeping a guide from Segou or Mopti is greater than from Bankass or Bandiagara. Our guide was the supposed brother of a man we met outside Mopti while waiting for the bache. We bought food and water at...

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  • Don't Forget Insurance

    If your current health insurance doesn't cover you while your abroad, you should consider getting international travel insurance just in case something should go wrong.

Bandiagara Favorites

  • Watch your step

    Dogon is not a dangerous place....but you do have to watch out for a few things like the millipede below. Medical care in Dogon Country is sparce at best and most options involve hiring a car at the last minute to get you to Bankass or Bandiagara...and in Africa a tourist in a rush = $$$$$$ to the locals. Not getting stung by anything...just...

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  • Drink water

    In the dry season it can get warm out here. While it stayed in the 90-100F degree range while I was here and was not bothered by it I did manage to dehyrate myself one day. The dry air and occasional breeze caught me off guard. If you stay on the trails you are usually never more than a few miles from the next village so you can buy it as you...

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  • The falaise du Bandiagara

    The "falaise du Badiagara" is a huge rocky wall. it stretches from Bankass over Bandiagara till Douentza, some hundert kilometers in legth. It is up to 200 meters high. From time to time, the immense rocky wall is ruptured by a small canyon, where it is possible to walk up to the high plateau above or vice versa. The small villages of the Dogon...

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