A area of Benin that has been dubbed the ‘Venice of Africa’ is attracting extra vacationers than ever earlier than.
Ganvie village was constructed in the midst of Lake Nokoué 400 years in the past and its distinctive historical past begins within the period of slavery. Within the 18th century, the individuals of the native Tofinu tribe have been determined to flee from the troopers of the Fon and Dahomey kingdoms who captured individuals and bought them to Portuguese merchants.
The ancestors of right this moment’s residents fled to the lake which was feared by the troopers who believed a horrible demon lived underneath its floor. Understanding this, the tribe selected to construct their properties on stilts in the midst of the water.
The title of the village pays tribute to this historical past, Ganvié means ‘we survived’ within the native language.
Even supposing they have been now not underneath risk, individuals saved dwelling of their lake properties. Over the centuries, Ganvié has grown past all recognition.
What’s life like within the ‘Venice of Africa’?
Right this moment, there are roughly 30,000 individuals dwelling within the village – they’re often called the ‘watermen’.
“We stay by fishing,” says resident Edmon Adissa. “We settled right here to flee from slavery. We make our dwelling by fishing.”
Even right this moment, all the things within the village stands on stilts from the wonder bar to markets, resorts, faculties, a hospital, companies and church buildings. Slim canoes referred to as pirogue are the one technique of transportation.
However tourism has step by step changed fishing as Ganvie’s predominant income. Round 10,000 vacationers go to the lake village yearly, based on native the tourism workplace.
Watch the video above to see the ‘Venice of Africa’.