Landlocked Burkina Faso is not exactly a top-billed destination in most travel books, and it is more than likely half the world doesn’t even know it exists. Nevertheless, this small West African nation is full of fascinating attractions that draw in adventurous travelers. Wilderness and nature are the main themes of the eastern region, while the west is all about history and culture. The capital city of Ouagadougou is right in the heart of the country and home to the central businesses district and key museums. If you are interested in indigenous groups and and their traditions, you will find the northern regions very appealing.
People who travel to Burkina Faso take home unforgettable memories of the country’s beauty, as well as the smiles and warmth of some of the friendliest people on earth. The country may be among the world’s poorest, but it is certainly one of the richest when it comes to nature, culture, and its people. From the breathtaking landscapes of W National Park to the glorious cultural heritage sites in Gaoua, Burkina Faso ha something for everyone.
The country’s magnetism lies in its rich wilderness. Its parks and reserves protect the largest elephant population in West Africa. A small piece of paradise can even be found right in the heart of Burkina’s capital, in the sprawling Bangr Weogo urban park, which has wild plants and diverse animal species on display. The Pobé Mengao stone carvings of Djibo, the Dioulassoba Grand Mosque in Bobo-Dioulasso and the museums in Ouagadougou and Ziniaré will take you back in time.
The famous town of Gorom Gorom in the Sahel is a must-see in Burkina Faso. Its artisan center is the best place to shop for local crafts, while the tourist camp is a popular starting point for excursions and camel rides in the desert. Be sure to go on a hike around the town of Banfora. Not far from the area are the magnificent Sindou Peaks, where you can see stunning rock formations shaped by time and wind erosion.
Efforts to improve tourism are underway as the government is hoping to increase facilities and accommodations in major areas. At the moment, most of the hotels are in larger cities like Ouagadougou and Bobo-Dioulasso, as well as Gaoua and Gorom Gorom. Elsewhere you’ll find small lodges and bungalows for rent in Arly and W national parks. It is possible to go camping, which is highly recommended to experience nature first hand.
Flying is the most convenient way to get into Burkina Faso. Two airports receive international traffic, including Ouagadougou International Airport and Borgo International Airport in Bobo-Dioulasso. Direct flights from San Francisco, New York, and Los Angeles are available on Royal Air Maroc and Brussels Airlines. Taxis are the main form of transportation within major cities, and buses will get you from one place to another. Renting a car is possible, as is getting a chauffeured driver which is advised if it is your first time to the country. Trains run between Ouagadougou and Bobo-Dioulasso daily with limited service.
- Get in touch with your outdoorsy-side at the Ziniaré wildlife park, Lake Tengrela and the national parks of Arly, W and Keux Balés
- Hike and trek around Banfora and the Peaks of Sindou
- Admire the cliffs of Gobnangoua
- Hunt at the Nazinga Ranch
- Camp and ride a camel through the desert near Gorom Gorom
- Tour Bobo-Dioulasso, its mosque, museum and the old town
- Explore the capital city of Ouagadougou
- Shop in the grand markets of Bobo-Dioulasso and fairs of Ouagadougou and Gorom Gorom