African architecture is just as important as any other architectural style.


Most of us have only seen the side of African architecture that is influenced by external western cultures. What you may not know is that our traditional and historic architecture is exceptional. From east to west, from north to south, our buildings are bombarded with artistic and technological implications. It’s not just the great pyramids of Egypt that are are extraordinary but tombs, villages, palaces and places of worship too.

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The most common materials used in the engineering of these structures are stone, thatch, wood, mud and brick. Structures were constructed according to the areas interaction with the environment, geographical factors and the community’s needs. For example stone was used if the area was prone to rainfall or termites, while thatch was used if the area’s climate was hot.

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Here are a couple of the continent’s most breathtaking buildings:

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The rock-hewn churches of Lalibela, Ethiopia
The Great Temple of Ramesses II at Abu Simbel, Egypt
Bosjes Chapel, South Africa
The Nubian Pyramids at Meroe, Sudan
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Stone Town, Zanzibar
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Bibliotheca Alexandrina in Alexandria, The great library in Egypt,
Timbuktu, Mali
Nubian architecture in Sudan
Heritage house in Kenya
Ndebele architecture, South Africa

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