Motorcycles are everywhere. From Kampala to Lome, Tambacounda to Dar. Motorcycles are affordable, good in traffic and believe it or not you can load 3 people plus a child on them. If you want to invest in Africa- invest in motos. If you want to ‘help Africans from dying’- donate helmets and promote road safety.
Donkeys are essential in Burkina, Mali, Senegal…. I only saw one donkey in Uganda and several Ugandans shouted at me to look at the ‘exotic animal’. They are rare there, like horses. Donkeys are a hardy animal that pulls large amounts of goods- including acts as the trash truck here in Ouaga!! While I was in Burkina there was a scandal over the killing of donkeys by Chinese who were using the skin for a traditional medicine and leaving the rest of the carcass in the village that the factory was to root and smell. They were up to killing 1,500 donkeys a day. The government acted surprisingly quickly (for Burkina) and made the sale of donkeys for foreign export illegal.
Boats. I miss these slow but practical vessels when I am in the US.
Large buses like these are standard across the continent. Often in various levels of cleanliness, speed and size, but a typical way to travel around, stopping at every village to drop off/pick up more people. Getting snacks on the side of the road, and breaking down at least once during a 6 hour journey. I dont miss these frustrating trips when I am in the US.
Many other types of creative transport exists, but my favorite is doing things like this- walking along, following a smiling child and practicing balancing a heavy tub on my head.