Get Involved with the Dogon Tribals

When you get to the Dogon country in Central Mali, make your way down to the village of Hombori which is stretching all across the yellow plains.  You will be able to make out the hollows in the cliffs in the sandstone. There are natural grottos which are used as burial chambers for more than one thousand years ago.

The tombs in the caves here belong to the Tellem tribe. The hunter gatherers of the Tellem tribe were attacked and driven out of the area by the Dogon about seven hundred years ago.  The Dogon people also began to bury their dead here.

The Dogon people are one of Africa’s most isolated tribal people. These people were unheard of until the year nineteen hundred and thirty. There was a young anthropologist who was from France, called Marcel Griaule. This person embarked on a three year research trip which spanned across all of West Africa.

This is a cliff complex that is located in French Sudan, which now happens to be Mali. The Dogon escaped from here as they did not choose to be converted into Islam by force. Griaule came back seven times to these cliffs and he later got a chance to interview a blind Dogon hunter who could speak English very faintly. Then later they came out with a book about the man called, “conversations with Ogotemmeli.”

You could hire a couple of Dogon guides who will take you through a plateau hike n then plunged right down to a steep trail which led to a  mud walled village which was have covered and hidden by  big huge boulders and many Baobab trees.

You could also go spend days trekking through the Dogon country. You could spend the day time hiking on trails and the nights could be spent in lodges that have been set up; specifically for the western tourist that this region receives,

It would be a good idea to hire a four wheel drive and head out through the eastern desert from the Niger border right into the town of Gao. Over here; you will find many sandstone structures that tower over the main plain.

This apparently is part of the whole beauty of this place making it part of Utash’s Monument valley.

You should go and fix yourself up at one of the many lodges which are here at the base camp in the village of Yndouma. The Dogon hotel here is quite different actually, it comes with five chambers without any windows and the mattresses are filled with sand. The forty watt bulb here is powered by a solar panel. There is a big jumble of houses and granaries over here. The roofs are made of flat clay which is side by side to each other. The roof is conical in shape and made of straw. There are caves at the top of these villages which were used for the purpose of burying the dead.

What do you think?

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