Photo Credit: TN
Explore Portugal's Black History With The African Lisbon Tour
Naky Gaglo, the creator of African Lisbon Tour, was born in Togo to parents of a mixture of various African cultures. For the past ten years, he has been an expatriate in Europe, and since 2014, he has lived in Portugal. When he’s not leading a tour, Naky works as a real estate consultant.
A self-taught jack-of-all-trades with a particular interest in everything that concerns the history of the African continent, Naky places the utmost importance on putting history back into context, so it can be re-discussed by all and completed to include the parts that have been omitted and ignored.
“One of the greatest writers of the African continent, Chinua Achebe, wrote ‘Until the lions have their own historians, the history of the hunt will always glorify the hunter.’ Colonizing Europe, which is largely responsible for the many difficulties Africa faces, has substituted the history of great kingdoms and great men with dark stories for which they attribute responsibility to Africans and pass themselves off as saviors,” said Naky.
“Even today this myth of the ‘good white man’ is widespread, not only in Africa, but also in Europe: an insult to the dignity and intelligence of Africans. We, the descendants of the lions, must correct what the hunters have written so that the legacy of our ancestors is not stained with lies. The descendants of the hunters must understand the dimension of the acts of their forefathers in order to understand the origin of certain theories aimed at dehumanizing the Africans, so that together we can create a better living space for all.”
The African Lisbon Tour is a guided tour about transatlantic trade and colonization, providing space for discussion and debate about this part of history that has been silenced in the media, textbooks, and public places in Portugal and elsewhere.
Naky started the tour company in 2014 after his expatriation to Portugal. His inspiration for creating it stemmed from his observation that although the African community seemed physically present in the streets of Lisbon, it did not seem present in the country’s history.
“Having noticed this, I became interested in the subject, as I wanted to know much more about their history. I then decided to educate myself through writing about the history of Portugal. In order to learn more, I participated in guided tours in the city, but none of them talked about the above-mentioned topics. This was the trigger.”
Thus, the African Lisbon Tour was born. The tour focuses on the Black diaspora in Portugal, and particularly in Lisbon. Though these tours, Naky aims to educate people on the history of Africans in Portugal, as well as their economic, social, cultural, religious, and other contributions to Portugal.
The visit is divided into two parts. First, there is a four-hour walking portion, during which Naky guides participants in exploring Black Portuguese history by bridging the past with the present. The second part consists of a delicious meal in an African restaurant. An optional third part can also be added.
“If people still have energy, and if the weather allows it, we can add a festive part where we do a bar crawl that can end in a club. It is important to remember that we only explore Black businesses.”
Interested in booking an African Lisbon Tour? You can reserve your spot by booking a tour on Airbnb, by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, or by sending a message to the company’s Instagram or Facebook pages. It will also soon be possible to book directly on www.africanlisbontour.com by choosing your pre-set dates.