The smallish country of Benin is perhaps not one that everyone has heard of before. This destination in West Africa sits wedged between the much bigger Nigeria, the most populous country in Africa, and the even smaller Togo (I mean Togo is even smaller than Benin). It’s capital is Porto Novo,
Today I’ve got a number of photos to share with you all. I know from the start that these aren’t my best photos overall, but they still are very interesting I feel. I stayed in Cotonou, in the south, when I was there and had a night in Parakou. Cotonou is the biggest city in the country, and from there I was able to visit Ouidah, on the coast, a place with a terrible past where people were sent as slaves to the New World. There’s a museum there in a fort, a temple famed for its pythons and some colonial buildings.
Ouidah is not too far from the beach and the ‘Porte de non Retour’ – the port of no return, which is specifically where the boats left from. There is a monument there, and at the time I was there I met some people tavelling around West Africa in a sort of military first aid jeep.
Ganvie is a ‘floating village’ as they call it, a village on a lake on stilts. I took a pirogue – a local boat – for a tour one day. Unfortunately I was having a bad day in more ways than one – I had been ripped off by the man in charge of collecting money for all the boats and had my back up. Completely unrelated to that I can’t help but notice today that most of my photos there are at very poor angles. Ahhh well.
Parakou is a day’s train ride north of Cotonou. It has little to recommend it but I will talk more about it this Thursday when I detail my trip from Cotonou to Niamey in Niger, a mighty two-day epic journey. For now, I hope you find these pics insightful or interesting in some way!
As always thank you so much for your visit today! Take care wherever you are! More on travel in Benin on Thursday! May the Journey Never End!