Cameroon Introduction



Cameroon, in West Africa, is a mixture of desert plains in the north, mountains in the central regions, and tropical rain forest in the south. Cameroon’s tourist industry is a victim of geography. It is bordered by some problematic countries. But this shouldn’t put you off, as Cameroon real­ly has everything a traveler could want. One of the most culturally diverse countries on the continent, its people include ancient tribal kingdoms, Muslim pastoralists and forest-dwelling pygmies.

The landscape is no less dizzying in its diversity. Mount Cameroon (4095m) is the highest peak in West Africa and attracts plenty of trekking interest. A still-active volcano, it rises almost straight from the sea in a spectacular manner.

You may enjoy with some fine palm-fringed beaches and fantastic seafood, throw in a cold beer or two, some lively home-grown makossa music and the Indomitable Lions of the national football team, and you’ll be revelling in your discovery.

Dangers:

The major cities, Douala and Yaoundé, both have reputations for petty crime, especially in the crowded central areas. The roads pose a greater risk, with plenty of badly maintained vehicles driven at punishing speeds.

Facts about Cameroon:

  • Time: GMT/UTC +1
  • Population: 16.4 million
  • Borders: Nigeria, Chad, Gabon, Equatorial Guinea, Central Africa Republic (CAR) all open; borders with Democratic Republic of Congo sometime closed, check in advance
  • Seasons: Hot year-round; north: wet (April to September); south: heavy rain (June to October)
  • Telephone: Country code 237, international access code 00
  • ATMs: At banks in large cities, linked to Visa
  • Budget: US$40 per day
  • Visas: Required by all, available in neighbouring countries for US$60
  • Capital: Yaoundé
  • Languages: French, English and many local languages
  • Area: 469,440 sq km (a little smaller than Spain, a little bigger than California)
  • Religion: Indigenous beliefs, Christian, Muslim
  • Currency: CFA franc (Central African CFA; US$1 = CFA498)
  • Life Expectancy: 48
  • GDP per Capita: U.S. $1,700
  • Literacy Percent: 79

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