The village is the most widespread form of settlement, as is the rest of the Sudanese region. It is very often divided into neighborhoods with thickened dwellings, separated by winding streets, a survival of the ancient defensive systems. Sometimes the neighborhoods are very far from each other: they are the sokala, resulting from the proliferation of the original nucleus. In the regions inhabited by the Bambara, Minianka, Bobo, Senufo and Malinke ethnic groups, the village is generally bordered by a low wall and is usually also protected by a high and thick defensive wall, as in Sikasso and Hamdallaye (ancient capital of the Peul Empire del Macina), in the regions of Bougouni and San. The walls also sometimes enclosed fields and vegetable gardens and allowed the residents to survive long sieges unscathed. The most common types of dwelling are made up of tents among the Tuaregh, the Moors and the Arabs; from round-shaped huts, made of mats or skins, to the same Tuaregh, the Peul and more rarely the Songhai; from troglodyte dwellings or from dry stone huts (or even cemented with clay) at the Dogon; from clay huts, rectangular or square, with terrace, very common in the Sahel area. There are many traditional festivals: the Dogon ceremonies stand out with their suggestive masks, the Festival Sur Le Niger in Ségou, in February, born in 2005, on the occasion of which craft exhibitions, dance and song shows are held; the Tuaregh gather in January for the Festival du Desert, where they sing and play melodies created by them. There are four UNESCO World Heritage Sites: the ancient city of Djenné (1988), once an important link and sorting station in the desert, whose houses were built on sand hills to avoid seasonal flooding; the city of Tombouctou (1988), an important place for the spread of Islam between the century. XV and XVI; Bandiagara (1989, both natural and cultural site), a center located on the evocative cliff of the same name, with fine architecture; the tomb of Askia (2004), testimony of the power and wealth of the empire that flourished between the 15th and 16th centuries.
According to thefreegeography, the most gifted and fertile groups in the artistic field are those of the Bambara and the Dogon. Dogon art, extremely essential and abstract, has produced a great variety of masks for funeral ceremonies or initiation rites and a statuary almost entirely dedicated to the representation of the ancestors and heroes of the tribe’s mythology. Bambara also refer to mythical beings in their agrarian rites and represent them with highly stylized human or animal-like masks. In the southern part and in the contiguous regions of the northern Ivory Coast and Burkina, the senufo still have to be mentioned, who have been able to develop an extraordinarily rich art, with masks and various types of statues, characterized by a treatment of the curves in a vertical direction. which recalls the Gothic.