Boauke is the second largest city of Cote d’Ivoire which lies in Vallee du Bandama Region. Its economy is mostly dependent on the cotton industry and the city is known for crafts. The Baoule people are the main residents here. Bouake also produces tobacco products, building materials, textile and rice. It’s also rich in mineral resources as gold, mercury and manganese are found nearby.
Currently, French and United Nations peacekeepers are residing in the city as part of a ceasefire enforced between the government and rebels in the northern part of the city. Before it became and administrative city in 1914, Bouake was an important slave market.
The city’s tourist sites include a school of forestry, government livestock, veterinary and meteorological stations as well as a cotton-textile institute. Bouake, like other cities in Ivory Coast is also known for a popular festival: the Bouake Carnival. It starts at the end of March and runs through the beginning of April. Another great site in Bouake is the St. Michaels’ Cathedral and the University of Bouake. As small as it may be for a city, Boauke is actually a center for education in Cote d’Ivoire. Other than its great university, it also has about 11 public colleges, and four private ones. The rest are private and public secondary schools and primary schools.
The city’s people, the Baoule tribe, are very independent and strong. When it comes to art, they are sophisticated and stylistically diverse. They are known for their mask figures, which represented ritual spirits.