"African highlight" Top 5 Page for this destination Mali by pfsmalo

Mali Travel Guide: 1,010 reviews and 2,899 photos

Happiness is a child's smile

This is really my favourite place in West Africa. Gentle people, some very good scenery and cheap!!!
Everywhere you go you can find smiles like this little girl's.
You'll find here and there photos of some of the girls that are in units run by the Abbot Michel Gaudiche of the Catholic mission in Badalabougou. These units have 6 girls each, mainly orphans, with one girl elected "chief", all between 18 to 25 y.o. To try for an ethnic unity between the girls there at least 4, if not 5 different ethnic groups in each unit. Each girl has 1 day to do the chores of cooking and cleaning. This is feasible as they have split days at school. I spent a week in these units helping out by giving a lick of paint on the walls. The girls also have to give up some of their spare time time to help out teaching in the poor school in Sabalibougou, a poor quarter of Bamako.

Recognise her?

This is the same little girl, as, above 7 years on. (See tip on Kalabougou).

Sunset on the Niger is something...

Whether it be Bamako, Mopti or Segou, the sun setting is a sight to see, although my favourite sunset has to be Segou.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Extra-friendly people
  • Cons:Don't know any, except perhaps for those that do not speak french
  • In a nutshell:Brilliant
  • Last visit to Mali: Jan 2009
  • Intro Updated Feb 17, 2009
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Reviews (57)

Comments (17)

  • gwened's Profile Photo
    Apr 11, 2013 at 1:04 PM

    great shots and the French are all over. Looking forward to visit end of year,my company just open a factory there for sept'13.

    • pfsmalo's Profile Photo
      Apr 12, 2013 at 1:51 AM

      I'm afraid that a lot of people think that this war is over...

    • gwened's Profile Photo
      Apr 12, 2013 at 1:55 AM

      businesswise it is.Or we wouldn't be there ::) remember business goes to many places of worse government conditions.

  • canuck68's Profile Photo
    May 23, 2012 at 3:52 PM

    I just revisited your Mali pages Paul. I love your photos and you have good tips. Diane

  • Rupanworld's Profile Photo
    Mar 5, 2012 at 6:46 PM

    absolutely love your photography here....merci beaucoup...beautiful page

  • CatherineReichardt's Profile Photo
    Dec 19, 2011 at 3:36 AM

    Interesting that you like Mali so much, Paul.
    I worked there on and off for four years and never 'connected' to the place ... seems that I have more of a connection with Southern and East Africa ...

  • Dec 13, 2010 at 5:31 AM

    San is a dry town. So if they served beer you likely were at the local brothel. Not really obvious if you come in daytime. ;o)

  • Rabbityama's Profile Photo
    Jun 7, 2010 at 8:45 PM

    Nice pictures and tips! I hope to be able to visit somewhere in Africa someday!

  • Nemorino's Profile Photo
    Jul 1, 2009 at 4:17 PM

    This really does look like a special sort of place, with friendly people and even the largest mud-brick building in the world. Great portraits in your travelogues! It was a nice idea to go back seven years later and find the same little girl in the photo.

  • SLLiew's Profile Photo
    Apr 3, 2009 at 11:20 PM

    An incrdible page of Mali. Your photos are mesmerizing and your warning tips will help every first time visitor to Mali. Thanks for sharing. Cheers, SL :)

  • hunterV's Profile Photo
    Feb 19, 2009 at 11:53 AM

    What a wonderful trip! Thanx for sharing here!

  • janiebaxter's Profile Photo
    Nov 2, 2008 at 4:08 AM

    Great pages and tips. I really enjoyed Mali & agree Segou is a lovely place.

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