Abomey-Calavi, Benin

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Abomey-Calavi, Benin

Region: Atlantique

Geographic Coordinates: 6.448600, 2.355600
Temperature Range: 21.0°C to 34.0°C (70°F to 93°F)
Climate: Seasonal.
Population: 655965
Language: Fon

Abomey-Calavi is a city in the southern part of Benin, West Africa, Located approximately 15 kilometers from Porto-Novo and 20 kilometers from Cotonou. The population of the city is over 500, 000 people and it covers an area of about 650 square kilometers. The history of Abomey-Calavi dates back to the ancient Kingdom of Dahomey, Which was founded in the early 17th century by King Houegbadja. The kingdom lasted until it was conquered by French colonial forces in 1894. Abomey served as the capital city for most of Dahomey’s existence and remains an important cultural center for Benin.

One major attraction in Abomey-Calavi is its rich cultural heritage. The Royal Palaces of Abomey are a UNESCO World Heritage site that showcases traditional architecture and art from Dahomean culture. Another notable feature is its vibrant marketplaces where locals sell everything from fresh produce to handmade crafts. Abomey-Calavi also boasts several natural attractions such as Lake Nokoue and Pendjari National Park. Lake Nokoue is known for its fishing industry while Pendjari National Park offers visitors opportunities to see wildlife such as elephants, Lions, Buffalo, Hippos among others.

In terms of education institutions; there are several universities located within or near Abomay Calvi like Université d’Abomes Calvi (UAC), Université d’Abomey-Calavi, Ecole Polytechnique d’Abomey-Calavi and the African School of Economics. Abomey-Calavi has a diverse economy with industries such as agriculture, Manufacturing, And services. It is home to several international organizations such as WHO and UNDP which contribute to its economic growth. Abomey-Calavi offers visitors an opportunity to learn about Benin’s history while experiencing its modern-day growth and development.

Important Landmarks

  1. Royal Palace of Abomey
  2. Temple des Pythons (Python Temple)
  3. Ouidah Museum of History
  4. Route des Esclaves (Slave Route)
  5. Zinsou Foundation Museum
  6. Ganvié Stilt Village
  7. Cotonou Cathedral
  8. Fidjrosse Beach
  9. Dantokpa Market
  10. W National Park (located near Abomey-Calavi)

Primary Industries

  1. Agriculture
  2. Commerce
  3. Transportation
  4. Education

The city is home to numerous universities and research institutions, making it a center for education and innovation.

Additionally, Abomey-Calavi has a thriving market economy with many small businesses selling textiles, food products, and handicrafts.

The city also has a significant transportation industry with several major roads passing through the area connecting it to other parts of the country.

Finally, agriculture is an important industry in Abomey-Calavi with crops such as maize, cassava, and yams being grown in the surrounding rural areas.

Noteable History

  1. The Kingdom of Dahomey once had its capital in Abomey-Calavi and was a powerful African kingdom that existed from the early 17th century until it was colonized by France in 1894.
  2. King Behanzin is considered a national hero in Benin for his resistance against French colonization and was one of the last kings of Dahomey.
  3. The Abomey Museum is a UNESCO World Heritage site that showcases artifacts and exhibits related to the history and culture of Dahomey.
  4. Abomey-Calavi played an important role in the transatlantic slave trade, with many slaves being captured and sold from this region.
  5. Ouidah, a town near Abomey-Calavi, hosts an annual voodoo festival which attracts thousands of people from around the world to celebrate voodoo religion and culture.
  6. The Zinsou Foundation, created by President Patrice Talon, is located in Calavi-Abormey.
  7. The University of Abomay Calavi (UAC) is one of Benin’s leading universities with faculties covering medicine, law, economics among others.
  8. In 1989, African Heads Of State met at Porto-Novo (Benin) to adopt measures on democratization after decades under military dictatorship through the Porto-Novo Declaration.

Museums and Things To See

  1. Royal Palace of Abomey
  2. Museum of Ethnography of Porto-Novo
  3. Da Silva Museum
  4. Ouidah Historical Museum
  5. Temple des Pythons (Python Temple)
  6. Zinsou Foundation Art Centre
  7. Fort of São João Baptista de Ajudá
  8. Ganvie Village on Stilts
  9. Abomey-Calavi University Botanical Garden
  10. Cotonou Central Mosque

Sports Teams

  1. I apologize as I do not possess the latest data on sports teams and their past in Abomey-Calavi, Benin.
  2. Nevertheless, I advise you to conduct an online search or contact local sports organizations to acquire more information.

Cultural Events

  1. Fête de la Culture et des Arts: This festival celebrates the rich cultural heritage of Abomey-Calavi and Benin as a whole. It features traditional dance performances, music concerts, poetry readings, and exhibitions of local crafts.
  2. Festival des Masques: This festival is dedicated to the art of mask-making in Benin. It showcases different types of masks from various regions of the country and includes mask dances, workshops on mask-making techniques, and cultural exchanges between artists.
  3. Festival de la Gastronomie: This festival celebrates the culinary traditions of Abomey-Calavi and Benin by showcasing local dishes such as akassa (cornmeal cakes), fufu (pounded cassava), grilled fish, and palm wine.
  4. Festival du Vodoun: Vodoun is a traditional religion practiced in Benin that involves ancestor worship and spirit possession ceremonies. The Festival du Vodoun celebrates this religion with colorful processions, drumming sessions, dance performances, and rituals performed by vodoun priests.
  5. Fête de l’Indépendance: This national holiday commemorates Benin’s independence from France on August 1st 1960. It is celebrated with parades featuring military bands, cultural troupes, floats representing different regions of the country as well as speeches by government officials to mark this historic event in the country’s history.


  • Pâte: a dough made from cornmeal or cassava flour, served with various sauces and stews.
  • Akpan: a fermented corn-based food, usually eaten for breakfast.
  • Agouti: a type of rodent that is often roasted or stewed and served as a delicacy.

Some popular restaurants in Abomey-Calavi, Benin include:

  • Restaurant Le Rendez-Vous: known for its traditional African dishes and live music performances.
  • Chez Gaby: a casual restaurant serving local cuisine such as pâte and grilled meat.
  • La Bonne Bouffe: an upscale restaurant offering both local and international cuisine, with an extensive wine list.

  • Parks and Recreation

    1. Parc des Princes et Princesses: A public park with playgrounds, sports fields, and picnic areas.
    2. Parc de la Pendjari: A national park known for its wildlife and hiking trails.
    3. Plage de Fidjrosse: A beach popular for swimming and surfing.
    4. Centre Equestre Abomey-Calavi: An equestrian center offering horseback riding lessons and tours.
    5. Stade Charles de Gaulle: A stadium used for sports events and concerts.
    6. Jardin Botanique d’Abomey-Calavi: A botanical garden featuring native plants of Benin.
    7. Golf Club d’Abomey-Calavi: A golf course open to the public.
    8. Lagoon Beach Resort & Spa: a resort with beach access, water sports, and spa services.
    9. Complexe Sportif d’Abomey-Calavi: a sports complex with tennis courts, basketball courts, and soccer fields.
    10. Marche Dantokpa Abomey Calavi: A large market selling local goods such as food, clothes, etc.


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