When I arrived in Sikasso, I couldn’t have felt farther from the Mali I had come to know in places like Bamako and Segou. That being said, I actually enjoyed the one night I spent in the city. Though there are apparently around 200,000 people in Sikasso, it feels like a small town and is completely hassle-free. There’s not a lot going on in town, but it makes for a good place to stop if you’re trying to break up the trip to Burkina Faso.
Things to Do and See in Sikasso
Honestly, you’re not going to find anything to do in town itself. This is a working town and isn’t set up for tourism as is Mali’s usual tourism destinations. The one thing of interest are the Grottes de Missirikoro which is basically a cave that is worshiped by locals. It’s worth a visit even if it is about 10km out of town.
Where to Eat in Sikasso
You’ll find a supermarket on the highway that has pretty much everything you’ll need if you’re self-catering. Otherwise, head to a place called Restaurant Kenedougou which has really good Malian food at a good price. If you’re staying at Hotel Tata there is also a restaurant there that serves Malian fare as well as things like sandwiches and brochettes.
Where to Stay
Just before arriving into town if you’re coming from Bamako, there is a place called Hotel Tata which is like an enclosed motel. Rooms vary from 8,000CFA to about 15,000CFA. The rooms are basic, but have their own bathrooms with cold water only. There is a restaurant on-site.
Getting Out of Town
Sikasso is a cross-road to a number of locations and a bit of a transportation hub.
- Bamako: It’s about 4 hours to Bamako and there are buses that leave basically every hour.
- Segou: The road via Po will take you to Segou in about 4 hours.
- Burkina Faso: The border with Burkina Faso isn’t far from here and you can catch buses to Ouagadougou which can drop you off at either Banfora or Bobo-Dioulasso on the way.
- Cote d’Ivoire: The long haul to Yamoussoukro or Abdijan can be started in Sikasso as well.
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