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Ganvie is a lake village in Benin, lying in Lake Nokoué, near Cotonou. With a population of around 20,000 people, it is probably the largest lake village in Africa and as such is very popular with tourists.
The village was created in the sixteenth or seventeenth centuries by the Tofinu people, established on the lake for the Tofinu to avoid Fon warriors capturing slaves for sale to European traders, making the shallow waters and islands of Lake Nokoue a haven.
Originally based on farming, the village's main industries other than tourism are now fishing and fish farming.
World Heritage Status
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