Ruins of Loropeni
Loropeni, Burkina Faso
Ruins of Loropeni Reviews
Burkina's only Unesco world heritage site May 06, 2010
Precious little is known about this large stone fortress in southern Burkina Faso. Not who built it. None of the tribes who currently inhabit the region use stones, so they think the people who built it have since moved to Ghana.
The exact age is also unknown. They can tell by the age of the treas that grow inside the walls today, that it was abandoned in the 19th century. No remains of imported foodstuffs were found, so it must predate colonisation. The oldest finds that could be carbon dated, date from the 11th century, but of course that says nothing about the age of the building itself. And the lower layers of the soil have not been examined yet, due to lack of funds, the story of any archeological site in Burkina, it seems.
You can see the outer walls, and the bottom of the walls dividing the fortress into rooms and coridors. You can also see holes in the walls where the roof of the ground floor was inserted, though they don't know what material was used for this.
There are three distinct parts inside the fortress. From archeological finds, they can tell it was most likely divided into woman's quarters, a part for farmers, and a part for warriors. There is also a little room outside that was used to burn rubbish.
The fortress is quite large, over 10.000 square metres. You have to use your imagination to see more than just some stone walls and treas, though.
The entrance fee includes a guide. She was quite good, explaining the history and pointing out little things we might otherwise not have noticed.
Part of the Burkina Faso (and the rest of West-Africa) travel blog
Part of the list Unesco World Heritage sites I've been to
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