Located on the Niger River’s flood plain which constrains riverfront development, Bamako is the capital city for the landlocked West African country formally named the Republic of Mali (formerly French Sudan).
City Mayors Statistics rank Bamako number 6 among the world’s fastest-growing cities and urban areas, while the Central Intelligence Agency’s World Factbook gives the median age for Mali residents at 16.2 years–in third place for countries with the youngest populations.
According to the International Trade Centre, Mali places well down among the top 150 countries and territories in 2016, shipping US$1 billion worth of goods around the globe. Mali’s highest-value exports are gold, raw cotton, sesamum seeds, mineral or chemical fertilizers, mangos, sheep or goat skins and timber.
Capital Facts for Bamako, Mali: Quick Reference
Capital landmarks: Cathedral of Bamako, Musee National de Bamako and Zoo National du Mali
Below, you will find 10 of the most famous people born in Bamako, Mali:
- Sianna Dwayna, hip hop artist (born Apr. 17, 1995)
- Souleymane Cissé, writer & director (born Apr. 21, 1940)
- Mahamadou Diarra, soccer player/footballer (born May 18, 1981)
- Oumou Sangare, composer (born Feb. 25, 1968)
- Nassira Traoré, Olympic basketball player (born Oct. 28, 1988)
- Bakary Soumare, soccer player & footballer (born Nov. 9, 1985)
- Diouc Koma, actor & writer (born Aug. 30, 1980)
- Seydou Keita, soccer player/footballer (born Jan. 16, 1980)
- Assane Kouyaté, director & actor (born 1954)
- Fanny Touré, composer (born May 30, 1964)
Note: Data for our Famous People tab was sourced from Google searches mostly targeting published Wikipedia articles specific to each person’s name.
Demonym for a Bamako resident: Bamakoan
Population: 1,297,281 (Bamako city)
Density: 13,713 people per square mile (5,295 per square kilometer)
Population: 3,110,000 million (Bamako built-up urban area)
Density: 25,917 people per square mile (10,006 per square kilometer)
Population: 17,467,108 (Mali)
Density: 37 people per square mile (14 per square kilometer)
GDP: US$35.8 billion as of October 2016 (for Mali, per WorldsRichestCountries.com)
GDP per person: $2,051
Note: The above country-level GDP metrics are on a Purchasing Power Parity basis and are in U.S. dollars. Credible city GDP statistics for Bamako were unavailable.
Official currency used in Bamako: West African CFA franc
Brookings Institution, Global Metro Monitor Report (includes GDP data). Accessed on February 13, 2017
Central Intelligence Agency, Africa: Mali. Accessed on February 13, 2017
Central Intelligence Agency, World Factbook, Field Listing: Major Urban Areas. Accessed on February 13, 2017
City Mayors Statistics, The world’s fastest growing cities and urban areas from 2006 to 2020. Accessed on February 13, 2017
CityMetric, Where are largest cities in the world? 2015 edition. Accessed on February 13, 2017
Demographia, World Urban Area, 12th Annual Edition. Accessed on February 13, 2017
International Trade Centre, Trade Map. Accessed on February 13, 2017
Official Government Website, Government of Mali Official Portal. Accessed on February 13, 2017
Wikimedia Commons, City Flags. Accessed on February 13, 2017
Note: Some city flags were unavailable. If so, attribution belongs to Wikimedia Commons for pertinent country flags.
Wikipedia, Bamako. Accessed on February 13, 2017
Wikipedia, Mali. Accessed on February 13, 2017
World Population Review, Population of Cities in Mali (2016). Accessed on February 13, 2017
Bamako’s city limits frame an area measuring 94.6 square miles (245 square kilometers) which also serves as home to approximately 1.3 million people in 2016.
Including the surrounding built-up urban area, Bamako’s land area expands to 120 square miles (311 square kilometers). The population count for Bamako’s built-up urban area is about 3.1 million inhabitants.
At the country level, Mali’s land area covers 471,118 square miles (1,220,190 square kilometers). The national population count was 17.5 million inhabitants as of July 2016.
Population density is lower within Mali’s capital city with an average 13,700 Bamakoans per square mile (5,300 per square kilometer) inside city proper limits.
Density intensifies to an average 25,900 people per square mile (10,000 per square kilometer) after factoring in Bamako’s surrounding built-up urban area.
For Mali overall, population density drops to an average 37 inhabitants per square mile (14 per square kilometer) placing Mali among the world’s 30 most sparsely populated countries.
Mali gained independence from France on September 22, 1960. Residents celebrate Independence Day as a public holiday each September 22.