Fun Facts About Benin – Soccer, Tourism and Democracy!
A Vibrant Democracy on the Continent of Africa!
Did you know- Soccer is the national sport in Benin. Like much of the developing world today, the French-speaking republic has not qualified for the FIFA World Cup. However, they qualified for the 2005 FIFA World Youth Championship in the Netherlands, where finished 18th, ahead of Australia, Panama, Honduras, Egypt, Canada, ,Benin and Switzerland. The best players were Abou Gariga Maiga and Razak Omotoyosssi ( who plays in Europe).
The Royal Palaces of Abomey
Did you know- Benin is a great destination in West Africa. The French-speaking country is famous for being home to the Royal Palaces of Abomey, a legacy of one of West Africa’s most powerful kingdoms. There is so much evidence of Benin’s ancient history, and here you can see tombs, sculptures, murals, and buildings. These palaces, Benin’s most noteworthy scenery, were built in 1625. Historically, this place was home to the Kingdom of Abomey, which flourished from the 17th century to the 19th century. Aside from being one of the ancient wonders on the African mainland, it was the first UNESCO World Heritage Site in the French-speaking nation, a land with a number of historic sites. Modern-day Benin has its roots in the ancient Kingdom of Abomey. Later, it was a territory under France until 1960.
Did you know- Tomas Boni Yayi is one of West Africa’s most respected presidents. Under Yayi’s leadership, Benin has been transformed into a new democratic state, where there are several political parties and a good human rights record. A good example of one of the world’s poorest nations.
Did you know- Benin is located in West Africa, and surrounded by Nigeria (an oil-rich republic) in the east, by Niger (the world’s poorest nation) and Burkina Faso (once called Upper Volta) in the north, by Togo (a French-speaking country) in the west, and by the Atlantic Ocean in the south. It has an area of 43,500 square miles (112,622 square kilometers). The country’s official name is the Republic of Benin (former Dahomey). Geographically, it is made up mainly of valleys, plains, and wilderness.Meanwhile, Benin’s capital Porto-Novo is the second largest city in population (over 200,000 people). In addition to the country’s capital, other cities include Cotonu ( Benin’s largest city), Djougou, Abomey-Calavi, Parakou, Bohicon, and Kandi, among others.
Did you know- The African republic over the last three decades has changed from a socialist economy to a free market system. Cotton is a key source of foreign exchange. It contributes more income to Benin’s economy than any other single economic activity.
Did you know- On the world stage, he African republic of Benin is well-known for its Royal Palaces and for the songs of Angelique Kidjo, who helped popularize African music in the United States and Europe. This daughter of Benin, a Grammy-Award winning singer, always will be remembered internationally for such songs as “Batonga”, “Agolo”, “Lombo”, “Wombo”, “We We” and “Adouma”. Kidjo was born on July 14, 1960 in Ouidah, Benin.
Did you know- On September 20, 1960, the African country became a member of the United Nations (and many of its specialized agencies). Sixteen years on, between 1976 and 1977, it served on the Council of Security of the United Nations for the first time.
Did you know- Benin –as large as Indiana and Hawaii together – has maintained good ties with Washington since the mid-1990s when the black republic became a multiparty democracy.