Benin lonely planet
Day 1: Madrid / Barcelona – Cotonou Day 2: Cotonou – Ganvie – Porto Novo – Cotonou (18 km, asphalt and 25 km by lake) Day 3: Cotonou – Abomey (190 km, asphalt) Day 4: Abomey Day 5º: Abomey – Parakou (290 km, asphalt) Day 6º: Parakou – Taneka Country – Natitingu (208 km, asphalt) Day 7º: Natitingu Day 8º: Natitingu – Kara (150 km, asphalt) Day 9º: Kara – Atakpame (252 km, bad road) Day 10: Atakpame – Lome (160 km, asphalt) Day 11: Lome – Grand Popo – Togo Ville – Grand Popo (70 km, asphalt) Day 12: Grand Popo – Day off Day 13: Grand Popo (38 km) Day 14: Grand Popo – Ouidah Day 15: Ouidah – Cotonou- Madrid / Barcelona Day 16: Arrival to Madrid / Barcelona
Major cities in Benin
Dassa is a town surrounded by hills that have a very special meaning since this is where the royal family and the local population took refuge when the Kingdom of Idasha was invaded by the powerful Kingdom of Dahomey in order to get men for the flourishing slave trade. We will climb some of these hills to enjoy the beautiful scenery and see how the spirits of the ancestors are venerated here.
Transfer to the pier of Calavie where we board our canoe to cross the waters of Lake Nokoué and meet the lake settlement of Ganvie, a group of villages built on the lake and where all life runs to the rhythm of the canoes, a really nice and picturesque place.
After breakfast, we will visit the subway village of Agonglo which was used by Fon warriors to hide in the time of inter-ethnic wars, before leaving for Parakou. Arrival in the afternoon.
Togoville, the city that gave its name to the country. In a canoe we will cross Lake Togo. We will visit the church, the animist square, the two fetishes the male and female, and go to the house of the queen of the priests to see if she welcomes us. Gran Popo, the village is located in a privileged site, between the golden sands of the golf of Guinea and the inland lagoons where the river MONO flows, the fishermen moor their colorful boats after fighting with the sea (how hard life is). In the interior of the lagoon the population keeps ancestral secrets and traditional religions.
Departure to Possotome, village located on the edge of Lake AHEME, Possotome is where the mineral water of the country is bottled, village of fishermen and farmers, arrival at the hotel we leave to discover the cultures of the village and also its traditions.
Not many people know how to locate the former French colony that is located in West Africa, wedged between Togo to the west, Nigeria to the east and to the north by Burkina Faso and Niger – whose homonymous river acts as a boundary.
In Porto Novo the most interesting points are the da Silva museums of history, the museum of ethnography, the large garden square place Jean Bayol, the great mosque, the temple of Python, the palace of King Toffa and of course the bay that conveys that air so peculiar to the ports of Africa.
The coastal city is a curious place, reminiscent of Benin’s communist past, and with a colorful market, the Dantokpa, fantastic to feel the African heartbeat. Here it is worth mentioning the fetishes, made from animal skulls. Inland is Lake Nokoué, with curious populations such as Calaví, a port overlooking the lake. In the lagoon live in floating stilt houses since the eighteenth century the Tofi ethnic group, whose ancestors came here fleeing from slave catches. Also on Lake Nokoué, the fishing village of Ganvié is another essential stop to witness life in its canals, in what is known as the African Venice.