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Mancala Game - Addicting Game for Children and Adults

Updated on May 20, 2013

Looking for a great game for the whole family? Then you've come to the right place. Let me introduce Mancala Game.

Mancala is a traditional game from Africa and Egypt that is fun but also helps to stimulate the children to learn math and teach them patience.

For adults, we must think strategically on how to win the game by having the most game pieces in our playing cups. It's not that easy, but as soon as you get the grip of this game, you'll be addicted.

Mancala is a simple game, you can practically play this game anywhere as long as you have 48 stones / beads (or mancala game pieces) and mancala board (usually made from wood / stone, but currently there are many variations of mancala board such as travel mancala board which makes it easier to carry during your holiday).

So, let's learn more about mancala and how to play mancala game!

About & How to Play Mancala

About Mancala Board

Image Credit

Above is the wooden mancala board. The 6 smaller cups on each side are the playing cups and 2 big cups at the end of the board is the mancala.

How to Win Mancala Game

The person who has the most stones / beads / game pieces on his / her mancala cup win the game.

How to Play Mancala Game

1. Put 4 game pieces in each playing cups.

2. The first player will pick up these 4 game pieces from one playing cup (you can pick the game pieces from any of your playing cup).

3. Drop the game pieces, one by one, in sequential clockwise order. Drop the piece in your mancala cup, but don't put it in your opponent's mancala.

4. If you drop the last piece in your opponent's playing cup, your turn is over.

If you drop the last piece in your playing cup and there's stones in that cup, you'll get another turn. You can pick up the pieces in that cup and repeat Step 3.

If you drop the last piece in your playing cup and the cup is empty, you grab the opponent's pieces from the playing cup directly opposite your empty playing cup. These opponent pieces will now become yours and you can drop it in your mancala cup.

5. Take turn

6. The game ends when there's no more game pieces in the playing cups or the player doesn't have any more game pieces in his / her playing cups.

7. The person who has the most game pieces in his / her mancala cup WIN the game.

How to Strategically Play Mancala Game

=> Hoard all the game pieces as much as you can in your playing cups.

Mancala Game - Travel Size

I love playing mancala while travelling or on holiday. My mom is a big fan of mancala and we've been playing mancala since I was a little kid. So everytime we have a chance to play mancala together, she's really happy as she always wants to win this game!

Thankfully, there are many affordable travel size mancala on the market, and I always carry this pocket size mancala during family holiday.

I know many people think it's quite messy to play with the game pieces and the board; so you can choose to carry the electronic pocket size mancala instead.

Have you ever played Mancala before?

Submit a Comment

  • JJNW profile image


    6 years ago from USA

    My kids and I enjoy this game. It is thoughtful, but rather relaxing. Once we made a Mancala board out of an egg carton! ***Blessed by a SquidAngel*** for spreading positive stuff for kids!

  • TeacherSerenia profile image


    6 years ago

    NO - never heard of it before today. However my son just received a game board for Xmas this month so I am investigating it. I love games that have historical as well as educational value.


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