Mali Tourist Traps

  • One such
    One such "dead-end" trap.
    by pfsmalo
  • Bamako street
    Bamako street
    by SirRichard
  • Me with the blue scarf
    Me with the blue scarf
    by SirRichard

Mali Tourist Traps

  • Dogon country - A tourist trap ????

    In the 10-year hiatus between my two trips to this part of Mali, much has changed here.The Dogon country is not as such, a trap that you cannot get away from, though it is fast becoming a problem in some of the villages, namely the amount of souvenir shops and the number of hawkers here and there. As the local guides know everyone, it is also...

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  • Touts

    If you wander around the market area in Bamako you will meet many young men coming to you with the classical "Hello my friend", "I just wanna talk to you" etc, that always end up in "come to my shop, only look", "I can be your guide, no big money"...If you really want a guide, take the first one, he will keep the others apart.If not, just be polite...

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  • Child hawkers near the main markets in...

    Although the majority of the kids are not aggressive at all, it can become overbearing, in the heat when you have 30 or 40 of them following you. Make a break by heading into the artisanal market . Here you can walk around, watch the men making the articles and not be troubled by the hordes of hawkers. They do not have the right to enter...

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  • Tombouctou (aka Timbuktu)

    What a wretched place! I suppose anyone that comes within shouting distance of Tombouctou has to go there just to be able to say, "I've been to Tombouctou and back!" But that's about the extent of the excitement.Tombouctou was a fabled destination for centuries. Reputed to have houses with gold roofs. It defied successful European exploration until...

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  • Avoid Bani Tours travel in Bamako

    We had the misfortune (or ingenuousness) to contact for the location of vehicles and all transportation, including the pinasse, Bani Tours travel in Bamako (http://www.banitours.com/).We rented the jeeps for three days but we could use them for only 2 days because were not informed that 1 day was used up only to reach us at a village three hours...

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  • Visa

    Everyone (except nationals of the West African states) needs a visa to enter Mali. There are no embassies in the UK, the nearest are either France or Belgium. Once in Mali, you need to register with the police in all major twon, who will stamp your passport.

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  • Not as untouristy as you think

    My expectations were a little shattered, when, on our first lunchstop on the plateau of the Bandiagara Escarpment, a motorbike with a young lad appeared, carrying a crate of beer and soft drinks for sale. The same happened every time we stopped for lunch or to camp.The children greet you with the words 'bonbon, cadeaux, bic' but are not too put off...

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  • Bribes: Be ready to pay

    Bribes: You have to be ready to pay them. It is nearly impossible to avoid. Every 30 to 40 kms, you have to stop at a police control. There is always something wrong with the Visa, with the car... They may let you go after hours of discussion, but everything is quickly arranged if you pay the 'fee'. Go with a good guide, used to deal with police...

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  • From Tombouctou, you can...

    From Tombouctou, you can arrange to spend the night in a Touareg camp. We were taken on a one hour camel ride to the camp (our bags and tents followed us by 4x4) from where we could see the city ligths. The 'camp' was occupied by two young Touareg families not realy eager to communicate. This did not give us any insight into the Touareg's way of...

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  • Don't fall for the esteem of...

    Don't fall for the esteem of visiting Tombouctou. Malians have learned that they can highly capitalize on tourists who seek the stigma of being able to say they've been to Tombouctou. I almost fell for it myself, but luckily due to the political situation in Mali at the time, we didn't make the full trip.It takes a very long time to get to...

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  • I hate to say this, but...

    I hate to say this, but Timbuktu could be a disappointment. It's quite fun to say you've been, and I found it charming, but there is little to see, nothing to eat, it is a challenge to get there, and very expensive to stay in a hotel. I stayed with a family and found the soft sand of the streets enchanting at night, and the stars beautiful, but...

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Mali Hotels

See all 15 Hotels in Mali
  • Radisson Blu Hotel, Bamako

    ACI 2000, Hamdallaye, (formerly Radisson SAS), Bamako, 2566, Mali

    Satisfaction: Excellent

    Good for: Couples

    Hotel Class 4 out of 5 stars

  • Hotel Mirabeau

    Quartier du fleuve - rue 311, Bamako, BP E 3506, Mali

    Satisfaction: Excellent

    Good for: Couples

  • Laico l'Amitie Hotel

    Now Libyan owned and abandoned by the Sofitel hotel chain, the lobby in the late afternoon and...

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  • Grand Hotel Bamako

    A large hotel built in the 1950s and renovated in the 1980s. There is a swimming pool which is among...

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  • Hotel Salam

    I have stayed several times at the Salam. It is conveniently located just into the city across the...

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  • Hotel Le Rabelais

    We stayed in this Hotel on our return from Timbuktu. This is a great place. Its a small hotel with...

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  • Le Djenne

    Missira 1, Rue 08, POrte 1039, Hippodrome, Bamako, Mali

    Satisfaction: Excellent

    Good for: Couples

  • Mission Catholique

    rue 361, Bamako, Mali

    Satisfaction: Excellent

    Good for: Couples

  • Le Relais Hotel

    Le Relais is a three star hotel on the Koulikoro road in the Hippodrome area of town. Behind it's...

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Top Mali Hotels

Bamako Hotels
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Selingue Hotels
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Mopti Hotels
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Kita Hotels
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Djenne Hotels
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Mali Tourist Traps

Reviews and photos of Mali tourist traps posted by real travelers and locals. The best tips for Mali sightseeing.
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