Burkina Faso’s Bordering Countries: An Overview

Burkina Faso’s Bordering Countries: An Overview

Welcome to our comprehensive guide on Burkina Faso’s bordering countries. Located in West Africa, Burkina Faso shares its borders with six neighboring countries. This article aims to provide you with a detailed overview of these countries, their geographical features, cultural diversity, and economic significance. Whether you are a traveler, researcher, or just curious about the region, this article will serve as a valuable resource to expand your knowledge about Burkina Faso’s neighboring nations. Join us as we delve into the rich history and unique characteristics of these countries that shape Burkina Faso’s border regions.

Neighboring Countries

Ivory Coast

Ivory Coast, also known as Côte d’Ivoire, is one of Burkina Faso’s neighboring countries. Located to the south of Burkina Faso, it shares a border that stretches for approximately 584 kilometers. The border between these two countries is marked by diverse landscapes, including dense forests, savannahs, and water bodies such as the Comoé River. Ivory Coast is well-known for its cocoa production, as it is one of the world’s leading producers of this valuable commodity. The close proximity between Burkina Faso and Ivory Coast has fostered cultural and economic ties, facilitating trade and cross-border activities.


To the south and southeast of Burkina Faso lies Ghana, another neighboring country. The border between Burkina Faso and Ghana spans around 549 kilometers. Ghana is renowned for its rich history, vibrant culture, and natural resources. The two countries share not only a physical border but also historical and cultural connections. The exchange of goods and services between Burkina Faso and Ghana has contributed to the growth of both economies, with trade routes connecting major cities like Ouagadougou and Kumasi.


Situated to the south of Burkina Faso, Togo is one of the countries that shares a border with Burkina Faso. The border between these two nations extends for approximately 126 kilometers. Togo is known for its diverse landscapes, ranging from coastal plains to rolling hills and plateaus. The close proximity between Burkina Faso and Togo has facilitated trade and cultural exchanges, with cross-border activities benefiting both nations.


Benin, located to the southeast of Burkina Faso, is another neighboring country. The border between Burkina Faso and Benin stretches for around 306 kilometers. Benin is known for its rich history, vibrant markets, and traditional arts and crafts. The border region between Burkina Faso and Benin serves as a hub for trade and commerce, with goods and people crossing the border regularly. This close relationship between the two countries has fostered economic cooperation and cultural exchange.


Niger, situated to the east of Burkina Faso, shares a border that extends for approximately 628 kilometers. The border between Burkina Faso and Niger traverses diverse landscapes, including the Sahara Desert and the Sahel region. Both countries face similar challenges related to desertification and the impact of climate change. The close proximity between Burkina Faso and Niger has led to collaboration in areas such as security, trade, and infrastructure development.


Mali, located to the north of Burkina Faso, is one of its neighboring countries. The border between Burkina Faso and Mali spans around 1,000 kilometers, making it the longest border shared by Burkina Faso with any country. Mali is known for its rich cultural heritage, historical sites, and vibrant music traditions. The border region serves as a vital crossroads for trade and cultural exchange, connecting major cities and towns in both countries.

In conclusion, Burkina Faso shares borders with several countries, including Ivory Coast, Ghana, Togo, Benin, Niger, and Mali. These neighboring countries contribute to the cultural, economic, and social development of Burkina Faso, fostering cooperation, trade, and exchange between nations.

Geographical Features

Sahel Region

The Sahel region is a significant geographical feature that borders Burkina Faso. This semi-arid belt spans across several countries, including Mali, Niger, and Chad. Characterized by dry grasslands and sparse vegetation, the Sahel region is prone to droughts and desertification. Despite the challenging climatic conditions, this region is home to a diverse range of flora and fauna, including acacia trees, thorny shrubs, and various species of antelope.

Volta River

The Volta River is another noteworthy geographical feature that forms a natural border between Burkina Faso and Ghana. Originating from Burkina Faso’s northern region, this majestic river flows southward through both countries, eventually emptying into the Gulf of Guinea. The Volta River serves as a vital source of water for irrigation, hydroelectric power generation, and fishing activities in the surrounding areas. Its presence also contributes to the rich biodiversity of the region, supporting the growth of lush vegetation along its banks.

Nakambé River

The Nakambé River, also known as the White Volta, is an important water feature that borders Burkina Faso and Ghana. This river originates from the northern part of Burkina Faso and flows southward, eventually joining the Volta River. The Nakambé River plays a crucial role in the agricultural activities of the surrounding regions, providing water for irrigation and facilitating the cultivation of crops such as rice, maize, and millet. Additionally, it serves as a valuable water source for livestock and wildlife in the area.

Mouhoun River

The Mouhoun River, formerly known as the Black Volta, is a significant geographical feature that forms part of Burkina Faso’s border with Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire. Originating from the northern part of Burkina Faso, this river flows southward, passing through various regions before eventually joining the Volta River. The Mouhoun River sustains the livelihoods of local communities through fishing and agriculture, providing fertile soil for crops like sorghum, peanuts, and cotton. Its presence also attracts diverse bird species and supports the growth of aquatic plants.

Arli National Park

Arli National Park is a remarkable natural reserve located in southeastern Burkina Faso, near the country’s border with Benin. This protected area covers a vast expanse of savannah, woodland, and gallery forests, making it a haven for diverse wildlife. Arli National Park is home to numerous species, including elephants, lions, cheetahs, antelopes, and a wide array of bird species. The park’s unique landscape and rich biodiversity make it a popular destination for nature lovers and wildlife enthusiasts.

W National Park

W National Park is a transboundary conservation area that spans across Burkina Faso, Niger, and Benin. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is one of the largest protected areas in West Africa, encompassing diverse ecosystems such as savannahs, forests, and wetlands. W National Park is renowned for its abundant wildlife, including elephants, hippopotamuses, lions, buffalos, and various bird species. The park offers visitors the opportunity to witness the beauty of untamed nature and supports efforts to preserve the region’s ecological balance.

Nazinga Game Ranch

Nazinga Game Ranch is a captivating wildlife reserve located in southern Burkina Faso, near the border with Ghana. This sanctuary provides a safe habitat for a wide range of animal species, including elephants, antelopes, warthogs, and monkeys. Visitors to Nazinga Game Ranch can embark on thrilling safari experiences, observing wildlife in their natural surroundings. The reserve also promotes conservation efforts and educates visitors about the importance of protecting Burkina Faso’s unique fauna and flora.

Economic Relations

Trade with Ivory Coast

Burkina Faso and Ivory Coast share a significant trade relationship, which plays a crucial role in boosting their respective economies. The bilateral trade between the two countries has been growing steadily over the years, contributing to the development of both nations.

Ivory Coast is one of Burkina Faso’s largest trading partners, with trade activities primarily focused on agricultural products and manufactured goods. Burkina Faso exports various commodities such as cotton, shea butter, and livestock to Ivory Coast. In return, Burkina Faso imports goods like cocoa, refined petroleum, and machinery from Ivory Coast.

This trade collaboration has not only strengthened economic ties but has also created employment opportunities for both countries. The exchange of goods and services has facilitated economic growth, improved living standards, and enhanced the overall well-being of the people.

Agricultural Exports

Agriculture plays a vital role in Burkina Faso’s economy, and the country is known for its diverse range of agricultural exports. The fertile lands and favorable climate conditions contribute to the production of various crops, making Burkina Faso a significant exporter of agricultural commodities.

Burkina Faso’s primary agricultural exports include cotton, sesame seeds, shea butter, cashew nuts, and livestock. These products are in high demand both domestically and internationally, contributing to the country’s foreign exchange earnings. The agricultural sector also employs a significant portion of the population, providing livelihoods for rural communities.

The export of agricultural products not only generates revenue for Burkina Faso but also strengthens its economic relations with neighboring countries. These exports contribute to regional food security and foster economic cooperation among the countries in the region.

Mining Industry

Burkina Faso possesses rich mineral resources, and the mining industry plays a pivotal role in the country’s economy. The mining sector has experienced significant growth in recent years, attracting foreign investments and contributing to the country’s economic development.

Gold is the primary mineral extracted in Burkina Faso, and the country has become one of the largest gold producers in Africa. Other minerals, including manganese, zinc, and copper, are also present in significant quantities. The mining industry creates employment opportunities, stimulates local businesses, and generates revenue through exports.

The mining sector’s growth has not only benefited Burkina Faso’s economy but has also fostered regional economic cooperation. The country’s mineral resources attract investments from neighboring countries, leading to collaboration and partnerships in the mining sector. This cooperation enables knowledge-sharing, technology transfer, and the development of infrastructure, contributing to the overall growth of the region.

Regional Economic Cooperation

Burkina Faso actively participates in regional economic cooperation initiatives, aiming to strengthen trade relations, promote economic integration, and achieve sustainable development. The country is a member of various regional organizations, such as the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU).

These regional partnerships facilitate trade, investment, and economic cooperation among member countries. Burkina Faso benefits from regional integration by accessing larger markets, harmonizing trade policies, and promoting cross-border collaborations. This cooperation also allows for the sharing of resources, expertise, and infrastructure development, contributing to the economic growth of Burkina Faso and its neighboring countries.

Overall, Burkina Faso’s economic relations, including trade with Ivory Coast, agricultural exports, the mining industry, and regional economic cooperation, play a vital role in the country’s economic development. These collaborations contribute to increased trade, employment opportunities, and the overall well-being of the population.

The article "Burkina Faso’s Bordering Countries: An Overview" provides a comprehensive understanding of the countries that share borders with Burkina Faso. Through this article, it becomes evident that Burkina Faso is surrounded by six diverse and unique nations, each contributing to the cultural, economic, and political dynamics of the region. By exploring the geographical features, historical aspects, and current relationships between Burkina Faso and its neighboring countries, readers gain valuable insights into the interconnectedness and significance of these borders. This article serves as a valuable resource for anyone interested in understanding the geopolitical landscape of West Africa and the role Burkina Faso plays within it.

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