" TOMBOUCTOU" Top 5 Page for this destination Mali Things to Do Tip by Elisabcn

Mali Things to Do: 145 reviews and 286 photos

  mud mosque in Tumbouctou
by Elisabcn

A thousand-year-old and mythical city. Its name comes from the guardian "Buctú" that watched over the well "Tim" that was situated in that area. The city was built around this well and was named Timbuktu. Founded during the XIII th century and now in decadence, it was the old location of Touareg people. It was an important Islamic center in the middle of the desert too. During its bests times it had 25.000 inhabitants, it was crossed by caravans and people from lots of different places that came there to do business.
In Tumbouctou you will find some interesting places to visit:
-the Ahmed Babá center, where some experts classify and restore manuscripts in Arabic from the XIV th and XV th centuries
-some mosques
-the old university
-the museum and the market
-the house of the first European explorer, Major Laing

Personally I found Tumbouctou very disappointing. It is a mythical city and so on but buildings are bad kept and locals ask for money for anything. I found more interesting cities like Djennéee or Mopti than Tumbouctou itself. Touaregs are very persistent, they want to sell you their gifts at any cost (even if you don?t show any interest to them) and sometimes they are aggressive as well. But visiting Mali without going to Tumbouctou . . .

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated Apr 15, 2009
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