Burkina Faso, Africa - Stein Travel
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Burkina Faso

Burkina Faso's name translates into 'the land of upright people' although it equally well known for the remarkable hospitality of the locals, its stable political situation, and vibrant cultural life.

Burkina Faso is landlocked, bordered by Mali, Niger, Benin, Togo, Ghana and Côte d'Ivoire. With sixty different ethnicities, this nation is a diverse blend of culture and traditions. Burkina Faso is ranked as one of the poorest countries in the world, and the most illiterate.

There are a surprising number of tourist attractions in Burkina Faso, despite the fact that very tourists ever visit here. The capital Ouagadougou is an agreeble place with excellent restaurants and entertainment options and famously friendly citizens. The most interesting city to visit is Bobo Dioulasso, known throughout West Africa for its music and nightlife, and as the home of the Djembe drum. The city's atmospheric Old Quarter and Grande Mosque are also well worth visiting. Another city, Gorom Gorom, is famed for its Thursday market and for the Feminine Artisan Centre of Gorom, where the local women demonstrate their skill in art, sculpture and pottery. Other camera-worthy Burkino Faso attractions include the granite-sculpting artists of Loango, the sacred crocodiles of Sabou, the mausoleum commemorating Princess Guimbi Ouattara and the natural waterfall of Banfora.

Getting around Burkina Faso entails roughing it a bit, but the adventure and scenery is compensation enough for the inconvenience of potholed roads. There is a train service running from Ouagadougou, the capital city, to the main towns but flying is invariably the quickest travel option. Credit cards are rarely accepted throughout the country, but cash can be withdrawn with a card at certain banks in Ouaga and Bobo. Mastercard is also not widely accepted at ATMs. Some travellers' checks can be cashed at local banks in the city.

This diverse destination has a tropical climate with two very distinct seasons; the rainy season and the dry season. The Harmattanseason runs from November to January and, although windy and dusty, it is considered the best time to visit because it's usually dry and cooler.

Burkina Faso will interest travellers looking for a rich and varied slice of West African life in the company of some of continent's friendliest people.

Information & Facts


There are several customs in Burkina Faso that visitors need to be aware of: photography is strictly controlled, and tourists should always ask permission before photographing any person, and never attempt to take a picture of a military or government building. Women should not wear short skirts or revealing clothing, and should refrain from smoking in public. Shaking hands is an appropriate way to greet a person regardless of sex, and one should always return a greeting. Homosexuality is not generally accepted in Burkina Faso. Eating, touching another person, and giving someone money with the left hand is considered offensive.

Duty Free

Visitors to Burkina Faso may import up to 200 cigarettes/50 cigars/100 cigarillos/250g of tobacco, one litre of spirit and one litre of wine, 500ml each of eau de toilette and perfume, and two still cameras/one movie camera. Sporting guns may be brought in by license only.

Passport Visa

It is recommended that all travellers ensure their passports have six months' validity remaining.

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