Sunday, February 27, 2011

Loropeni...a third time!

This was my THIRD time visiting the Loropeni Ruins, the only UNESCO World Heritage in Burkina Faso and lucky for me, only 20km from my house!

Jon had never been; neither had his counterpart Papa so they invited me to come along with a few of their other friends.

The past two times I just kind of wandered in there and went in with the information I've read in guidebooks. But I'm glad we got a guide this time around to really explain the mystery behind these ruins. They also had all these signs that made it better organized...overall, a really great time!

A little blurb again about the Loropeni Ruins again from Wikipedia:

The Loropéni ruins were added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2009. The ruins are the country's first World Heritage inscription. Surrounded by mystery, the 11,130m2 property is made up of an array of stone walls. Loropéni is the best preserved example of a type of fortified settlement in a wide part of West Africa, linked to the tradition of gold mining, which seems to have persisted through at least seven centuries. Loropéni, given its size and scope reflects a type of structure quite different from the walled towns of what is now Nigeria, or the cities of the upper reaches of the river Niger which flourished as part of the Empires of Ghana, Mali and Songhai. It thus can be seen as an exceptional testimony to the settlement response generated by the gold trade.

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