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Introduction Guides Accommodation Getting there
The Dogon region (Pays Dogon) lies south of the river Niger in Mali, principally located along the Bandiagara escarpment.

Although many are leaving the villages and moving to the larger towns, there remain many who preserve the animist (pre-Islamic) and later Islamic traditions.

The most interesting villages tend to be tucked into the foot of the escarpment, but you will also find less visited and still pretty amazing settlements both on the plateau and on the plain.

Although you can travel without guides, your experience will be considerably enhanced by travelling with a local, preferably Dogon, guide.  Not only will they make sure that you do not miss what you came to see, but also as a courtesy to the local inhabitants, not to mention the important contribution you and they can make to the local economy.

You can either take a fully inclusive tour, or hire guides by the day, with or without transport.

Although most of the interesting areas have basic "auberges" accommodation and campsites, there are also reasonable, Western standard, hotels in the larger towns of Bandiagara and Sangha. 

Mopti is only 80 km or so distant and has one or two very good hotels with swimming pools and all the other amenities you could reasonably expect in Mali.

Surprisingly good, if simple, food and cold beer, sometimes even wine!

The easiest way to get there is to fly to Bamako, about a days hard drive on decent roads.  Alternatively you can catch a connecting flight to Mopti, where your guide can take you to one of the main towns.  From there, again the easy option is 4x4, but you can also trek between villages.

We drove from Europe (UK) and, if you have the time, recommend you do the same.  Admittedly a lot of driving for a few days in Dogon country, but an unforgettable experience.


For more information and images of the Dogon region, the rest of Mali, as well as other interesting places elsewhere in the world, visit

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Jeremy Harrison 2005