Mali: Mopti Grand Mosque
Perhaps the biggest attraction in Mopti is the Grand Mosque also known as Komoguel Mosque. It’s a spectacular mud brick building of ancient traditional Sudanese architecture that looks like it belongs on a planet from the Star Wars franchise. The mosque was built in 1908 on a site of an old mosque in the very center of Mopti – it’s a busy quarter of town and getting a good picture is tough – you need to climb roofs of the adjoining houses. Also the trees growing inside the mosque’s walls obscure a lot of the structure (supposedly, they used to be trimmed down before but that’s not happening anymore). The mosque is a UNESCO World Heritage, and it’s mud architecture requires annual restoration as the rain washes out and damages a lot of the mud during the rain season. Only Muslims can enter the walled off compound.