Burkina Faso is a proud country which has preserved its cultural identity descended from a long line of regal emperors standing between Sahelian Empires and coastal kingdoms and between Saharan desertscapes and southern waterfalls. In the markets, turbaned traders on camels mix with farmers on donkey-drawn carts. Discover the spectacular Sindou Peaks or swim at the Karfiguela Waterfalls.

Mali, with a population of over 19million predominantly under 30, is famous for its salt mines. In the past, Mali was one of the richest countries, home to great emperors whose wealth came mainly from the region’s position in the cross-Sahara trade routes between West Africa and the north. Timbuktu was an important centre of Islamic learning. From the fringes of the Sahara Desert and the great Niger River, to medieval mud-brick mosques and pink-hued sandstone villages, Malians are a proud, welcoming and enduring people with a great passion for their traditional culture.

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