Get Directions

If flights are open, then that would be the best choice by far. If not, one can either hire a 4 x 4 with a driver to go to Mopti (10 hours) or take a bus which will take a full day. From Mopti, the trip is another two days up the Niger River!


  • There are few city names around the world that spur the imagination as much as the name Timbuktu. A dusty city that was for years synonymous with the uttermost end of the Earth.

  • Located on the southern edge of the Sahara, a few km’s north of the Niger River, the town was founded around 1100 CE.

  • Timbuktu’s location at the meeting point of desert and water made it an ideal trading centre. In the early 14th century it was incorporated into the empire of Mali and became a flourishing centre for the trans-Saharan gold and salt trade.

  • It also grew as a centre of Islamic culture thanks to the Malian Empire’s most renowned ruler, Mansa Musa. After his Haj in 1324, he returned with scholars and architects who built the great ‘university city’ which attracted students and scholars from all around the globe. By 1450 its population increased to about 100,000, with the scholars alone numbering 25 000.

  • The city is home to three of western Africa’s oldest Musjids—Djingareyber, Sankore, and Sidi Yahia.

  • Today the city is a shadow of its former glory but many buildings, having survived the elements and wars, still remain in its original form after eight centuries.

  • The famous Timbuktu manuscripts have also been preserved. The manuscripts which cover topics on various teachings of Islam as well as astronomy, mathematics, medicine and law have been collected and number in the thousands.

Tagged as: Heritage Sites

Related posts

No Results Found

The page you requested could not be found. Try refining your search, or use the navigation above to locate the post.