Porto-Novo, the capital of Benin in West Africa; 267,200 residents (2009).
Porto-Novo is located on the land side of a large lagoon and spreads out over
the surrounding hilly country. In the city center are many colonial buildings,
royal palaces and several traditional shrines; east of this to trade districts
and ministries. The old center gives the city a provincial feel, and it lies as
an appendix to Cotonou, Benin's economic center, 30 km to the west.
The city was changed. in the 1500-h. and was long an important slave-trading
town. During the French colonial period, it was the main city of Dahomey.