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Mali owes its name to the prestigious Empire of Mali, which, according to historians, was the most powerful state of Africa, south Sahara, in the middle ages. Mali became part of the French West Africa by the end of the 19th century. Prior to independence from France in 1960, Mali was known as the French Sudan (soudan Francais).

Mali is the largest country in West Africa. 

Administrative regions Mali : Kayes, Kouliloro, Sikasso, Segou, Mopti, Tombouctou, Gao, Kidal and the District of Bamako

Capital City Mali : Bamako

hotels, tour operators - mali tours, travel guides, travel to mali


Hotels in Mali

   -   Hotel in Bamako
Sofitel l'Amitié Bamako [ In the city centre; Parking + Restaurant + Swimming pool + Meeting room ]

Centrally located hotels ranging from small family run budget accommodation to world-class five star hotels.


Travel Agents / Tour Operators  
Holidays from dozens of leading specialist tour companies and accommodations who are passionate about conserving Africa's wildlife and benefiting its people.

Create your perfect trip to Mali   -   Flight, Hotel and Car

  Acacia Adventure Holidays   -   one of the world's leading independent African experts
  Mountain Travel Sobek 

Mali (Bradt Travel Guide) - ISBN 1841622184Travel Guides Mali / Related books

Mali (Bradt Travel Guide)
Mali's capital, Timbuktu, became a twin town of Hay-on-Wye in February 2007; both are famous for their festivals, but that's where the family likeness ends. In Mali you may float past hippopotami whilst sailing down the River Niger, greet 300 herdsmen atop brilliant white camels, or stand on an escarpment looking out over the mystical cliff villages of the Dogon people. This new edition features thoroughly updated information on everything from elephant migrations to rock-climbing. It also includes a new, comprehensive guide to the music and festivals of Mali, including the Festival in the Desert to which increasing numbers of tourists flock. Ross Velton has travelled extensively in French-speaking countries around the world including western Africa, and has hitchhiked across the Sahara.
Paperback: 320 pages; Publisher: Bradt Travel Guides; 3 edition (15 Sep 2009); ISBN-10: 1841622184; ISBN-13: 978-1841622187.

Daily Life in Ancient and Modern Timbuktu  -   Larry Brook, Ray Webb (Illustrator)
Examines the history of the city of Timbuktu, or Tombouctou, from its time as a camping site for nomadic Tuaregs through its prominence in the sixteenth century to the current decline it faces.
Hardcover 64 pages (February 18, 2000);  Publisher: Lerner Pub Co.;  Language: English;  ISBN: 0822532158.

Mali Map [ITMB]
Map: 1 pages; Publisher: ITMB Publishing; 2Rev Ed edition (30 May 2007); ISBN-10: 1553413148; ISBN-13: 978-1553413141. 

Unesco's world heritage sites

  Cliffs of Bandiagara   -   sandstone chain, Mopi region
The Cliffs range from south to northeast over 200 km and extending to the Grandamia massif. The end of the massif is marked by the Hombori Tondo, Mali's highest peak at 1,115 meters. Because of its archaeological, ethnological and geological characteristics, the entire site is one of the most imposing in West Africa. See UNESCO - Land of the Dogons.
  Djenne   -   Urban Commune in the Inland Niger Delta region of central Mali
Between the 15th and 17th centuries much of the trans-Saharan trade in goods such as salt, gold and slaves that moved in and out of Timbuktu passed through Djenné. 
The town is famous for its distinctive mud-brick (adobe) architecture, most notably the Great Mosque which was built in 1907 on the site of an earlier mosque.
  Djenné-Jéno   -   south of Djenne
Site of one of the oldest known towns in sub-Saharan Africa.
  Timbuktu   -   city on the southern edge of the Sahara Desert
Timbuktu flourished from the trade in salt, gold, ivory and slaves. Timbuktu was a world centre of Islamic learning from the 13th to the 17th century.

Mali Map [ ITMB ] - ISBN 1553413148Transport / How do I travel to Mali

  Bamako Airport
Air France, Aigle azur, Royal air Maroc, TAP portugal, Brussels Airlines

Book cheap flights to Mali at ebookers and benefit from discounted airfares. View their latest offers and book your flights, accommodation, car hire and insurance online

  Airline Tickets /  Bargain Flights   -   Flights to Mali / Flights to Bamako


Mali is bordered by Algeria to the North, Senegal to the west, Mauritania to the northwest, Niger to the east, Burkina Faso and Cote d'Ivoire [ Ivory Coast ] to the south.

  Embassy of Mali in Washington, USA   -   Tourism & Travel
Key data, Maps, Sights ans Attractions, Travel tips, Hotels, Restaurants

  Mali Tourism   -   Le Site Web du Ministère de l'Artisanat et du Tourisme du Mali

  Bamako   -   Capital City Mali

The city is the jewel of the Niger River, and is home to the World's largest mudbrick mosque design by the famous architect Ibn Batouta.
  Dogon country   -   located in the Mopti region
Offers spectacular cliffs,  breathtaking views,  and vast plains.  The scenic Dogon villages are built on the sides of the cliffs.
  Kayes   -   Capital of the first administrative region
Kayes was also the capital of the French Sudan during the colonial era. Located near the river Niger, Kayes still has many European style buildings and Boulevards.
  Sikasso   -   Capital of Kenedougou
Sikasso is the economic heart of the country, thanks to the cotton and other agricultural production. It's the only region that stays green year around.
Capital of the former Bambara kingdom, Segou is the second largest city of Mali.The city of the Balanzan trees (Acacia Albiza) has well preserved its Sudanese colonial architecture.
  Mopti   -   'the Malian Venice'  -  capital of the fifth region
This island has one of the busiest ports on the Niger River and a tourist region par excellence.
Capital of the sixth region, Timbouctou was founded in the 12th century, also known as the 'mysterious city';
Timbuktu is classified as a world heritage site.
Timbuktu is home to one of the world's largest collections of ancient African manuscripts
Gao was the capital of the powerful Songhai empire in the 15th and 16th centuries. Gao lies 1,200 km northeast of Bamako and was the last Malian port before Niger. The Tuaregs and Songhai inhabitants of Gao are known for their gourmet and their hospitality.
  Kidal is pure Sahara, with its chains of beautiful mountains. People live there from livestock and handicrafts production.
Bamako, the capital city is the melting pot of the various ethnic groups of the country. Shady, pleasant and welcoming, Bamako is one of the most traditional African capitals.

  Au coeur du Mali   -   Tourisme, Histoire, Actualité, Géographie, Culture et traditions, Liens
Bienvenue au Coeur du Mali, cette civilisation millénaire. Nous allons essayer en quelques pages de vous présenter le Mali à travers sa culture, son histoire sa géographie et son économie.  Des noms comme "Tombouctou" ou "Touareg" vous sont peut être famillier, découvrez d'ou il viennent
  Ministère  de la Culture du Mali
Le Mali est au coeur de l'histoire et de la culture de l'Afrique de l'Ouest, terre de rencontre des peuples d'Afrique du nord et ceux d'Afrique Noire, à la croisée de la civilisation arabo-berbère et négro-africaine.
Le Mali est le berceau de l'une des plus vieilles civilisations noires, la terre des empires qui ont été parmi les plus grands du continent...
  Ministère de l'Education Nationale
  Mysterious Places   -   virtual tour   -  Malian magic
Mali is a landlocked country in Western Africa. It is slightly less than twice the size of Texas. Home to mysterious cliff dwellings built by a culture that has vanished in the mists of time. It is believed that the Tellem tribe established the cliff dwellings in the Bandiagara Escarpment before the 14th century. They also established burial sites in the escarpment's caves. The Dogons came to the escarpment in the 14th century to escape from the Muslims. The Dogons are Muslims and animists ........
MysteriousPlaces seeks to give the visitor information, educational materials, and personal observations about the remains of ancient civilizations, sacred sites and unusual locations from around the world.
  Pro Mali
Une initiative de la Fédération Nationale des Artisans du Mali (FNAM), pour la promotion et le développement des entreprises maliennes

Climate: Three main seasons
oo   The rainy season runs between June and October   
oo   The cooler season, October to February   
oo   The dry season from March to June

Cuisine  -  Mali Foods / Recipes

  Malian Cuisine

History of Mali

Former: French Sudan.

Independence: 22 September 1960 (from France)

  Mali's History   -   see Wikipedia
Mali is the cultural heir to the succession of ancient African empires -- Ghana, Malinke, and Songhai -- that occupied the West African savanna. These empires controlled Saharan trade and were in touch with Mediterranean and Middle Eastern centers of civilization...
  Mali empire   -   see Wikipedia
Mali Empire, centered around Timbuktu. Mali grew famous due to their immense riches obtained through trade with the Arabic world, and the legendary pilgrimage of Mansa Musa to Mecca.
  Mansa Kankan Musa I or Mansa Musa [[1]] a 14th century king of the Mali Empire. He is remembered for his fabled hajj and as a benefactor of Islamic scholarship.
  Songhai_Empire [ Wikipedia ]
From the early 15th to the late 16th century, the Songhai Empire was one of the largest African empires in history. This empire was centered around the city of Gao, and its base of power was on the bend of the Niger river in present-day Niger and Burkina Faso.

Empires of Medieval West Africa: Ghana, Mali, and Songhay - Great Empires of the Past 
David C. Conrad
Drawing on a rich oral tradition, numerous trips to the region, and the latest scholarship available on this important but little-studied era, scholar and author David Conrad explores the people, places, and ideas that made up this trio of empires. Connections to life today include the continuing impact of Islam and tribal groups in Africa, and the influence of the medieval traditions on modern music and cuisine.
Hardcover 128 pages (April 2005);  Publisher: Facts on File Inc,;  Language: English;  ISBN: 0816055629.
Peoples of the Middle Niger: The Island of Gold - Peoples of Africa 
Roderick McIntosh
This book provides the first comprehensive history of the peoples of the Middle Niger written by an English -speaking scholar. "The Island of Gold" was the medieval Muslim and later European name for a fabled source of gold and other tropical riches. Although the floodplain of the Niger river lies far from the goldfields, the mosaic of peoples along the Middle Niger created a wealth in grain, fish and livestock that supported some of Africa's oldest cities, including Timbuktu. These ancient cities of the region that came to be known as Western Sudan were founded without outside stimulation and their inhabitants long resisted the coercive, centralized state that characterized the origins of earliest towns elsewhere. In this book, Roderick James McIntosh uses the latest archeological and anthropological research to provide a bold overview of the distant origins of life for the inhabitants of the Middle Niger, and an explanation for their social evolution. He shows, for instance, the difficulties the peoples faced in adapting to an unpredictable climate, and how their particular social organization determined the unusual nature of their responses to that change. Throughout the book oral traditions are integrated into the story, providing vivid insights into the inhabitants' complex culture and belief systems.
Hardcover 384 pages (August 23, 1998);  Publisher: Blackwell Publishers;  Language: English;  ISBN: 0631173617

Music, Art & Culture Mali

Twenty ethnic groups are living in Mali and despite the trade between them in history, each still with a specific culture.

Sundiata: Epic of Old Mali - African Writers Series)  -   D.T. Niane
This text gives an insight into the legends, customs, value systems and wisdoms of historical Africa.
Paperback 112 pages (April 18, 1995);  Publisher: Longman;  Language: English;  ISBN: 0582264758

  Music of Mali [ Wikipedia ]
Mande music [ Bamana, Mandinka, Maninka ], Jeliw (Griots) [ Traditional instruments ], Popular music [ Post -independence, Roots revival / Bajourou, Mid-70s diversification,  Exodus ], 1980s [ Wassoulou ], 1990s to present, Tuareg Music

  Culture of Mali 
The Culture of Mali derives from the shared experience as a colonial and post-colonial polity, and the interaction of the numerous cultures which make up the Malian people.
  Culture du Mali [ French language ]
Ethnic groups, Festivals, Languages, Architecture, The griots or "Djéli.", Sanankuya [ joking relationship ], Literature, Music, Cinema, Photography, Theatre, Fashion [ mode ], Media

A griot is a West African storyteller, praise singer, poet and musician. The griot is a repository of oral tradition. See Wikipedia, Griot, A film by Volker Goetze
  Griots and Griottes: Masters of Words and Music
Hale, Thomas A. Hale
Bloomington, Indiana: Indiana University Press; 1968

  Sanankuya [ cousinage ]
Refers to a social characteristic present especially among the Mande peoples of Mali, as well as many West African societies in general.

  African Encounters of Photography   -   a biannual event held in Bamako (Mali) since 1994
See Rencontres Bamako.
  Desert Festival   -   a Tuareg cultural encounter, every year in Essakane
  International percussion festival in Bamako (FESTIP)
Takes place every year between March and April.
  Voices of Bamako   -   traditional African Arts Festival
Takes place every year in January, its success is its unique free events.

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