Home AFRICAN STORY Ganvie: The Largest Floating Village In Africa

Ganvie: The Largest Floating Village In Africa

by inlandtownadmin
0 comment
Ganvié_The largest floating village in Africa_The _Venice_of_Africa

Popularly referred to as the “Venice of Africa” due to its picturesque and distinctive nature, Ganvié is a unique floating village in Benin, West Africa and the largest in Africa.

Ganvié was founded several centuries ago by the Tofinu people, who sought refuge on Lake Nokoué to escape slave raiders from neighbouring kingdoms, particularly the Fon tribe, who captured slaves for sale to European slave traders.

The name Ganvié means ‘ We Survived’ and it serves as a reminder of events that led to the founding of the village. Despite slavery being a thing of the past, the community has embraced their distinctive way of life and shows no inclination to depart from it. While the village’s origins lie in agriculture, its main economic activities nowadays revolve around fishing and fish farming, aside from tourism.GanvieThe village thrives on self-sufficiency, with inhabitants venturing ashore solely to trade fish. It boasts its own restaurants, places of worship, clinic, hotels and a boisterous market place. Notably, almost everything you see in an everyday market is found here.

In Ganvié, solid ground is scarce. The villagers had to transport soil by boat to construct a school for their children and create a cemetery for the dead who lived their whole lives on the water to find peace in the earth.

Ganvié is entirely constructed over water, with vibrant bamboo houses standing on stilts. These stilts are often replaced annually due to the challenging environment. Even a simple visit to a neighbor for coffee or gossip entails a boat journey, as the nearest shoreline is several kilometers away.

A trip to Ganvié offers a truly unique adventure.  Upon arrival, you’ll secure a boat rental to explore the community’s way of life, amidst a plethora of intricately crafted wooden vessels. To date, it remains the largest water-based community known. Life unfolds entirely on the lake’s surface.

Related Articles

Leave a Comment

* By using this form you agree with the storage and handling of your data by this website.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read More