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The capital city of Burkina Faso has a name that is pronounced just like it looks. Well, I suppose that depends on what language you grew up speaking and reading. Actually, it is pronounced "Wah-guh-doo-goo" (my apologies for not using exact phonetic symbols). But many people just call it Ouaga (Wah-guh). In Ouaga, one can find people from many ethnic groups, although the Mossi are the best represented.

One of the most well known events in Ouagadougou is the bi-annual African film festival known as FESPACO (you might want to visit the FESPACO website). In alternating years, there is an arts festival called SIAO.

Here are a few photos of some of the people and sights of Ouaga. Be sure to also visit the Peace Corps staff page, with pictures of a few of the staff who also work in Ouagadougou. Or you might want to visit the website of the International School of Ouagadougou (ISO) for some pictures of their school. An online city plan showing the general layout of Ouaga makes you think there is a large river running through the city, but the actual river is nowhere near as large as it looks, even during the rainy season. And during the dry season, it essentially disappears.

You can find other pictures and more information about Ouagadougou in encyclopedias like Microsoft Encarta© or Encarta Africana©


Click on a thumbnail image to see the larger photo.

A man rides  his mobylette down a main street with a large piece of pipe, passing several small shop kiosks. Moments before, he pulled into the street just missing knocking me in the head with the pipe !

July 2001



Keri drives a taxi in Ouagadougou. Green taxis pick up multiple passengers they pass on the way and negotiate a price with each (there is one fixed price between most locations in the heart of downtown). 

Yellow taxis, and a company with beautiful new white taxis, let you call to request a specific pickup and drop-off.

Fall 2001


Marla talks with a couple of local commerçants (vendors) in Ouaga. 

marla__commercants.JPG (264777 bytes)

They sell jewelry and mass-produced (by hand) souvenirs, such as brass and wood figures.

December 1999


From a Ouaga roof, one can see other roofs during one of the frequent wind and rain storms of the rainy season.

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September 2001

At the Peace Corps office, three Peace Corps volunteers hang on against the wind during a sudden storm.

pcvs hang on in wind-baxic.JPG (129991 bytes)

Fall 2001

A new building goes up.

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Fall 2001

A top-heavy truck stops on the road into Ouaga.

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Spring 2001

The STMB bus stops at Tampouy, at the edge of Ouagadougou.

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Spring 2001

The main road at the Tampouy bus stop, on the outskirts of Ouaga, has little traffic this morning.

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Spring 2001


All photos and essays are copyright Cathy Seeley. All rights reserved. No photo or text may be reproduced without permission except for small group educational purposes (thanks for giving appropriate credit). 
For other uses, please contact Cathy Seeley.


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