Bianou Festival: A Celebration of Culture and Diversity in Agadez, Niger

Bianou Festival: A Celebration of Culture and Diversity in Agadez, Niger 1820 , 9 Days

Located in northern Niger, between the Sahara and the Sahel, the Agadez region celebrates the Bianou festival yearly. It is one of the biggest festivals in the country. Celebrated since the Middle Ages in the region, Bianou coincides with Achoura, a religious event in Islam to commemorate the first month of the year in the Muslim calendar. Bordering Algeria, Libya, Mali, and Chad, the Agadez region is characterized by a strong mix of different cultural groups. The festivities provide an opportunity for all communities to come together, bond, and celebrate local traditions and heritage. 

During the celebrations, traditional warriors from the East and West of Agadez sporting spears and daggers cross the city under the beats of tambourines. People of all ages and socio-economic backgrounds participate by dressing up and escorting the traditional dancers.

Bianou Festival: Celebrated annually since the Middle Ages and a unique opportunity to witness local traditions
Cultural Diversity: The Agadez region is known for its strong mix in the diversity of cultures in West Africa
Traditional Warriors: Witness the warrior culture in action during the Bianou festival

View Route Map


Day 1. Arrival in Niamey
Arrive Niamey, transfer to our hotel for overnight. -/-/-

Day 2. Niamey – Tahoua

A long day driving to Niger’s fourth largest city. We visit Dosso Sultan Residence on the way and after lunch continue to Tahoua. Hotel in Tahoua.

Day 3: Tahoua Agadez
Our journey continues North-East and after 6 hours driving we reach Agadez.- the main city of the eastern part of the country located right on the edge of Tenere desert. We visit the the Great mosque and the old city. The Great mosque was built in Sudanese style, fully made of banko – a mixture of mud, dung and straw. B/-/D

Day 4: Agadez. Bianou festival.
Bianou is a typical Tuareg festival of the city of Agadez whose origins are very distant. The real celebrations last three days, although preparations are prepared 23 days in advance. The date of the festival varies from year to year. Each neighborhood has its own colors and flags. The men wear a rich boubou, large indigo-colored dresses, turbans with the characteristic shape of a rooster as well as the inseparable gri (the talisman brings luck) and epees, spears called takoubas. To the sound of drums, they sing and dance through the streets of the city to reach the sultan's enclosure and symbolically gather around the "Etebel", the drum emblematic of the unity of the Tuareg tribes.. B/-/D

Day 5: Agadez – Zinder
Depart for Zinder after breakfast - the former capital of Niger. In the afternoon we visit the mosque and the ancient Sultan Palace of Zinder, which dates from the 15th century and offers a great example of traditional Hausa architecture. Tour the regional museum to learn about Hausa culture and spend time in the bustling cattle and artisan markets. Hotel overnight. B/-/-

Day 6: Zinder – Maradi

Originally part of Katsina, a Hausa state, Maradi became independent in the 19th century. From the early 19th century, it was home to one of several Hausa traditional rump states, formed by rulers and nobility who fled the rise of the Sokoto Caliphate. Overnight guest house in Maradi. B/-/-

Day 7: Maradi - Konni - Masallata - Niamey
En route til Niamey we will stop for lunch in the historical town of Konni.
Continue to Niamey. City tour in the afternoon

Day 8. Departure

Good to know: ► A visa is required to enter Niger – to be obtained from a Nigerien embassy/consulate in advance. ► Remember mosquito prevention to avoid mosquito –borne illnesses. ► As Niger is a Muslim country it is recommended to dress modestly and respect local customs and traditions. Alcohol is prohibited in many areas. ► Public transport is limited and the road conditions are poor; a part of the experience.

Price Includes:
7 nights hotel and guest houses
meals acc. itinerary
transport in a 4x4 air-conditioned vehicle
English-speaking guide
police registration and travel permit
entry fees
visa assistance
tour leader from Penguin Travel (at min. 8 participants)

Not Included:
international flights
visa fees
photo permits
drinks and meals not mentioned
tips and personal expenses


Bianou Festival: A Celebration of Culture and Diversity in Agadez, Niger (Rated 4.79 / 5 Based on 34 Reviews.)
1820 EUR
9 Days
Single Supplement
230 EUR
Open for booking
Please keep in mind the exact dates of the festival are always announced 5-6 months before the trip and it's possible that the departure date needs to be changed

Currency fluctuations might cause correction of price at any time.

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