The Ivory Coast is the heart of West Africa
N'dapi village - Photo Credits: Romina Facchi
We are at Boundiali in the Ivory Coast, today we leave and go West to Odienne.
The road we have to travel is not very long, it is about 180 km, but there are several works, in practice they are rebuilding it new and high compared to the ground, with the drainage channels underneath; this is a clear signal that indicates how much it rains in this area during the rainy season.
Basically, for almost the entire trip, we drive the dirt road that is next to the main road and this forces us to travel at a speed between 30 and 50 km / h.
Dozo warriors - Photo Credits: Romina Facchi
We are at Odienne in the Ivory Coast, we arrived today at lunch time, just the time to have lunch and rest an hour at the hotel and we leave immediately to visit.
Today we meet the Dozo, a caste of warriors and hunters; they are not an ethnic group but part of the Mande or Malinke and are the descendants of the powerful kingdom of Mali.
In the past they were a real army and took an active part in the civil war that has battered the Ivory Coast in the past years; today they are only a sort of private police that protects villages and people.
Yacuba Village - Photo Credits: Romina Facchi
This morning we left Odienne, today it was mainly dedicated to the meeting of the Yacuba or Dan; one of the most interesting populations of the Ivory Coast and Liberia.
We are traveling South and, just after the town of Touba, we turn left and take a dirt road.
We drive about 4 km and then turn left again, at a sign indicating the direction to the village of Silakoro.
On the road! - Photo Credits: Silvano Greco
This morning we were at Odienne in the Ivory Coast, after checking out we left, today we will travel South; in this part of the country fewer cars and trucks pass than in the Eastern part and the population seems poorer, there are certainly more traditional villages, even if the towns and cities are not lacking.
As we move towards the South, vegetation is increasingly present and becomes ever more luxuriant; it is wonderful to see so much green after so much dryness.
Liana bridge - Photo Credits: Romina Facchi
We are at Man in the Ivory Coast, today is dedicated to the exploration of the surroundings, we will also see a dance by the Guéré.
After breakfast we leave to the West, towards the border with Liberia; the road is not the best, it is full of holes that, probably, were formed by rains.
There is nothing along the way, apart from some villages and lush vegetation; it takes about 2 hours to reach the town of Danane, that is about 80 km from Man.
Guerè village - Photo Credits: Romina Facchi
We are in the Ivory Coast and more precisely at Man, in all we spend 2 nights in this town and today is dedicated to the exploration of the surroundings.
This morning we went to see the liana bridge on the Cavally River, a sacred bridge for the Yacuba; while in the late afternoon we will go to see a dance of the Guéré, the last dance of this trip ... at the mere thought there is a bit of sadness.
Yamousoukro - Photo Credits: Romina Facchi
This morning we woke up at our hotel in Man, Ivory Coast and, after having had breakfast, we left.
Today a long stretch of road awaits us, almost 500 km, up to Yamousoukro, on a paved road but full of holes, some of them huge; so we must proceed with caution.
From this moment on we will not visit anymore villages and we will not see anymore tribal dances and rituals; we already have nostalgia.
The first stretch of road, that heads South, is actually in good condition.
On the road - Photo Credits: Romina Facchi
We are at Yamousoukro, the capital of the Ivory Coast.
Yamousoukro, as a city, does not offer much, but hosts the Basilica of Our Lady of Peace, that, in the intentions of those who built it, wanted to be a copy of the Basilica of Saint Peter in Rome; let's say that the realization, however, is not really a masterpiece.
This morning we have breakfast at the hotel garden, we enjoy the view and also the company of some starlings that, as always, do not miss the opportunity to catch a few crumbs falling from the tables.
Grand Bassam - Photo Credits: Romina Facchi
This morning we left Yamousoukro, we arrived at Abidjan and, after escaping the chaotic traffic, we finally arrived at Grand Bassam.
The town of Grand Bassam was, even if only for 3 years, the capital of the Ivory Coast during the colonial period; the French decided to found the capital here, but the town was abandoned in 1896 due to an outbreak of yellow fever, and the capital was moved elsewhere.
Brussels Airlines - Photo Credits: Romina Facchi
Yesterday evening at 9:00pm we went to the airport atAbidjan, it is time to say goodbye to the Ivory Coast; this country has fascinated us and its people welcomed us with an unparalleled warmth.
But our Brussels Airlines flight was already waiting for us to bring us back to the cold Europe, cold in every sense ...
We checked in, we passed the controls and made the exit from the country: bye bye Ivory Coast, we will carry with us forever the memory of a wonderful country.