Chic African Culture Africa Factbook

Senegambia Graves and Stone Circles

 Senegambia Graves and Megalithic Stone Circles

The Senegambia burial mounds stone circles are located between the River Gambia and the River Senegal in the Western African countries of Guinea, Senegal and The Gambia. The Senegambia stone circles are a setting for ceremony and rituals, grave markers, places of burial, and a sacred place of worship and mourning.

Senegambia Graves and Megalithic Stone Circles
Wassu in Guinea

The Wassu and Kerbatch grave sites in The Gambia and Guinea and the Wanar and Sine Ngayene burial mounds in Senegal contain over 1,000 stone circles and ancient human burial mounds spaced over an area of 62 miles wide and 217 miles in length. In all, there are 1,102 carved stones on all the stone circles of Senegambia burial sites. 

The Sine Ngayene grave complex of Senegal is the largest site with 52 circles of stones. The next largest is Senegal's Wanar grave complex with 21 circles of stones, third is the Wassu complex located in Guinea consists of 11 circles and lastly The Kerbatch complex located in the Central River Division in The Gambia consists of 9 stone circles.

The Senegambia ancient graves also include pottery, iron tools, arrows and everyday to elaborate items dating between 1 BC or the 1st millena and the 16th century. The tallest stone is located in Wassu standing at 9 feet tall. The stones used to build the circles are iron rich stones which iron tools were used to shape the stones. 


There are as many as 25 megalithic stone circles and grave sites found throughout Guinea, Senegal and Gambia; the four largest sites are:

Kerr Batch or Kerbatch of The Gambia containing 9 megalithic stone circles. 

Wassu of Guinea containing 11 megalithic stone circles.

Wanar of Senegal containing 21 megalithic stone circles.

Sine Ngayene of Senegal containing 52 megalithic stone circles. 


Senegambia Definition

During the Seven Years War 1756–1763, Britain took over French posts in Senegal forming the colony of Senegambia. Certain territories of the Sudan were grouped together under the name Senegambia and Niger in 1903.

Senegambia is also a region in West Africa between the Senegal and Gambia rivers, and also the confederation of Senegal and the Gambia, formed in 1982 - 1989. The two countries reached a merger agreement in November 1981, and the Senegambia confederation came into being three months later. The Gambia’s growing concern over its autonomy, however, led to the dissolution of the confederation in 1989.


Sengal, The Gambia and Guinea

Senegal is located in Western Africa, bordering the North Atlantic Ocean and has been inhabited since ancient times and is the westernmost country on the African continent. West Senegal's Wanar and Sine Ngayene burial mounds were designated a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2006. Senegal has a total of 7 World Heritage Sites, 5 cultural and 2 natural.

The Gambia is geographically surrounded by Senegal located in Western Africa, bordering the North Atlantic Ocean and Senegal. The Gambia coastline is 49 miles long, otherwise the smallest mainland African country is completely surrounded by Senegal. 

Yes, the “The” officially belongs in front of Gambia since 1964 when The Permanent Committee on Geographical Names stated "From a letter dated May 1964 from the Gambian prime minister's office instructed that The Gambia should be used with a capital T. One of the reasons they gave was that Gambia could be confused with Zambia, which was a new name to the international community at the time."

Guinea is located in Western Africa bordering the North Atlantic Ocean between Guinea-Bissau and Sierra Leone. Guinea shares with Senegal and The Gambia the Gambia River. 

In the 13th century, the Mali Empire took control of the African country of Guinea. In the 18th century, Fulani Muslims established an Islamic state in central Guinea that represents one of the earliest examples of a written constitution and alternating leadership.


Other famous ancient megalithic stone circle sites:

Stonehenge in Salisbury, Wiltshire South West England.

Gochang Dolmen Site, South Korea.

Ring of Brodgar in Orkney, Scotland.

Deer Stones, Mongolia and Siberia.

Drombeg Stone Circle, Co Cork, Ireland.

African Stonehenge Blaauboschkraal Stone Ruins, South Africa.

Megalith standing stones, Brittany, France.

Rujum el-Hiri, Israel.


Did you know?

French is one of the official languages of Senegal, The Gambia and Guinea.


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