Top choice in Cameroon

Approached via a ceremonial gate, the compound is centred on a hugely impressive bamboo building, its conical thatched roof supported by wooden pillars carved with figures from secret societies, former chiefs, dancers, musicians and even the World Cup–winning Cameroon football team. The interior is out of bounds, but the visitor centre to the left offers an informative tour.

Reconstructed in 2015 following a fire, the chefferie clearly illustrates that traditional culture is alive in the area; the small huts to either side of the avenue house the chief's fifty wives and their children. The modern palace is to the right, adjoining a good museum on the history of metal working and sacred life in Bandjoun. Take a motorbike taxi from town to get here (around CFA500, 15 min).

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Cameroon attractions

1. Bandjoun Station

5.81 MILES

Dramatically decorated with mosaics, this arts centre and workshop boldly announces itself. The centre supports the work of local contemporary artists.