Kandi, Benin

Reading Time: 5 minutes

Kandi, Benin

Region: Atlantique

Geographic Coordinates: 11.128600, 2.936900
Temperature Range: 20.0°C to 40.0°C (68°F to 104°F)
Population: 177683
Language: Fon

Kandi is a city located in the northeastern part of Benin, West Africa. It is the capital of the Alibori Department and has a population of approximately 150, 000 people. The city is known for its rich cultural heritage and traditional practices that have been preserved over time. One of the most notable attractions in Kandi is the Royal Palace Museum or Musee du Palais Royal de Kandi which was once home to the kings of Kandi.

The palace was converted into a museum in 1975 and now houses various artifacts, Including royal regalia, Traditional clothing, Musical instruments, And weapons used by ancient warriors. Visitors can learn about the history and culture of Kandi by exploring this museum. Another interesting site to visit while in Kandi is the Boko-Songhai Cultural Center which showcases various aspects of Songhai culture through exhibitions on agriculture techniques, Fishing methods, Blacksmithing skills as well as traditional medicine practices among others.

The city also boasts stunning natural beauty with several parks such as W Park National Park located just outside town that offers visitors an opportunity to see wildlife such as elephants, Lions, Leopards among others. Additionally one can take an excursion along Pendjari River where they will encounter hippos basking on river banks. Kandi also has several markets where locals sell their products ranging from fresh produce to handmade crafts such as pottery items decorated with intricate designs unique to this region.

These markets are great places for tourists who want to experience local life while shopping for souvenirs or sampling some local cuisine like grilled fish or corn porridge called tchoukoutou. one cannot talk about Kandi without mentioning its annual Festi-Berger Festival held every October which celebrates Berba culture through music performances from local artists showcasing their talents alongside other African musicians from neighboring countries like Togo or Burkina Faso making it a great place for music lovers to visit. Kandi is a city that offers visitors a unique blend of cultural heritage, Natural beauty, And entertainment.

Visitors can enjoy exploring historical sites such as the Royal Palace Museum or the Boko-Songhai Cultural Center while also experiencing local life through markets and festivals. The city’s proximity to W Park National Park and Pendjari River also provides an opportunity for wildlife viewing making it an ideal destination for nature enthusiasts.

Primary Industries

  1. Kandi, Benin is mainly an agricultural region with cotton being the primary crop.
  2. Other crops grown in the area include maize, sorghum, and cowpeas.
  3. Livestock farming is also a significant industry in Kandi.
  4. Apart from agriculture, there are some small businesses and industries in Kandi that include food processing, handicrafts production (such as pottery and weaving), and small-scale trading.
  5. The city also has a few local markets where people buy and sell goods.
  6. Overall, Kandi’s economy relies heavily on subsistence farming with limited industrialization or commercial activity.

Noteable History

  1. The Kingdom of Kandi: Once a powerful kingdom in the region, ruled by influential kings who controlled trade routes and amassed great wealth.
  2. King Gbêhanzin: One of the most famous kings of the Kingdom of Dahomey (of which Kandi was a part) led his army against French colonial forces in several battles before being captured and exiled to Martinique.
  3. The Slave Trade: Like many cities in West Africa, Kandi played a role in the transatlantic slave trade as enslaved people were transported through its ports to be sold overseas.
  4. The Abomey-Calavi Railway: In 1927, construction began on the Abomey-Calavi railway line that passed through Kandi, connecting it to other major cities in Benin.
  5. Traditional Religion: Many people in Kandi still practice traditional African religions such as Vodun (also known as Voodoo), which have been an important part of local culture for centuries.
  6. The Festival des Arts et Cultures Bariba: This annual festival celebrates Bariba culture and attracts visitors from all over Benin and beyond.
  7. Agriculture: Today, agriculture is one of the main industries in Kandi, with crops such as cotton, maize, cassava and yams being grown by local farmers.
  8. Musician Angélique Kidjo: Born near Ouidah but raised partly in Cotonou, this Grammy-winning singer-songwriter has become an international ambassador for African music.
  9. The Museum Albarika: This museum showcases traditional art from around Benin, including masks, sculptures, pottery, textiles, musical instruments etc.

Museums and Things To See

  1. Royal Palace of Kandi
  2. Museum of Kandi
  3. The Great Mosque of Kandi
  4. Monument des Martyrs de la Défense Civile
  5. Centre d’Artisanat de Kandi
  6. La Place des Martyrs
  7. Musée Ethnographique de Bétérou
  8. Parc National de la Pendjari (located near Kandi)

Sports Teams

  1. After conducting research, it appears that there is limited information available on sports teams and their histories in Kandi, Benin.
  2. It seems that the city does not have any notable professional sports teams or leagues.
  3. However, some popular sports played in Kandi include football (soccer), basketball, and volleyball.
  4. Local schools and community organizations may organize friendly matches or tournaments for these sports.

Cultural Events

  1. Fête de la Pêche (Fishing Festival) – This festival is held annually in August to celebrate the importance of fishing in the local economy.
  2. Fête de l’igname (Yam Festival) – This festival is held annually in September to celebrate the yam harvest and give thanks to ancestral spirits.
  3. Festival du Zangbéto (Zangbéto Festival) – This festival is held annually in January or February to honor the voodoo deity Zangbéto and promote traditional beliefs and practices.
  4. Fête des Masques (Mask Festival) – This festival is held annually in December to showcase traditional masks from different regions of Benin.
  5. Semaine Culturelle de Kandi (Kandi Cultural Week) – This week-long event features various cultural activities such as dance performances, music concerts, art exhibitions, and traditional games.
  6. Foire Internationale du Bénin Nord (Northern Benin International Fair) – Held every two years, this fair showcases products from different sectors such as agriculture, industry, tourism, and crafts from all over Northern Benin including Kandi.
  7. Carnaval du Nord Bénin (Northern Benin Carnival) – Celebrated every two years on Easter Monday with colorful parades featuring floats decorated with flowers and costumes representing different themes related to Northern Benin’s culture.


  • Pâte d’arachide: This is a dish made from peanut butter sauce and served with rice or yams.
  • Poulet DG: A popular chicken dish that is cooked with vegetables and spices.
  • Fried fish: Fresh fish caught from the nearby rivers is often fried and served with plantains or cassava.
  • La Table de Madou: A restaurant that serves traditional Beninese cuisine such as poulet yassa (chicken marinated in lemon juice), grilled tilapia fish, and mafé (a peanut stew).
  • Chez Lolo: A local eatery known for its grilled meat dishes such as brochettes (skewers) of beef or chicken.
  • Le Béninois Restaurant-Bar-Grillade: This restaurant offers a mix of African and European cuisine including grilled meats, seafood dishes, and pizzas.
  • Maquis Tante Marie-Joëlle: A small restaurant serving delicious local food like akassa (cornmeal cakes) with tomato sauce or bean soup.
  • Restaurant La Terrasse du Lac Ahémé : This lakeside restaurant serves fresh fish dishes along with other French-inspired meals like steak frites or ratatouille.

  • Parks and Recreation

    1. Parc des Princes is a serene public park situated in the heart of Kandi, Benin that’s perfect for relaxation and recreation.
    2. Kandi Lake is a natural lake found in Kandi, Benin where visitors can enjoy fishing, boating, and picnicking.
    3. Parc National de la Pendjari is a national park located near Kandi, Benin that offers outdoor activities such as hiking, camping, wildlife watching and bird watching.
    4. Centre Culturel Artistique et Touristique (CCAT) showcases the traditional culture of the people of Benin through music, dance and art exhibitions.
    5. Stade Municipal de Kandi is a sports stadium located in Kandi where visitors can watch local football matches or participate in sports activities such as running or jogging.
    6. Musée Régional du Borgou displays the history and culture of the Borgou region of Benin through artifacts and exhibits.
    7. Cotonou Beach may not be directly in Kandi but it’s only 4 hours away by car from Kandi, this beach offers various water sports activities like swimming, surfing, etc.


    Its All About The Journey.

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