A melting pot of ethnic and indigenous cultures of Africa, Cameroon is a travel destination unlike any other. It is so incredibly diverse that you may think you are visiting different countries, but the seemingly different destinations are in the same country. It is very rich in natural landscapes composed of active volcanoes, white-sand beaches, lush rainforests and peculiar rock formations. It is the perfect place to see how African traditional and tribal culture meets with modern culture to form different cities and culturally significant experiences. Here, you can experience the “Soul of Africa,” and witness the many unique traditions, art styles, cultural practices and diverse people that make Cameroon a must-visit destination in the continent.
Important and Interesting Facts About Cameroon
- Cameroon is located in a tropical region with the terrain consisting of flat plains, mountains and coastal plain.
- Cameroon shares a border with six countries namely: Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Congo, Central African Republic, Chad, and Nigeria.
- Cameroon has soil rich of minerals and enriched by natural resources like oil, timber, hydroelectric power, natural gas, cobalt, nickel, iron ore and uranium.
- Cameroon is famous for producing coffee, cocoa, cotton, bananas and oilseeds.
- Cameroon has the tallest mountain in West Africa, Mount Cameroon. It’s an active volcano that stands over 4095 meters.
- Debuncha is at the foot of the Cameroon Mountains and records annual rainfalls of 400 inches (10,000mm), this is about 20 times the annual rainfall recorded in England.It is the second wettest place in the world.
- Cameroon has 7 national parks and Waza National Park is its most famous one with numerous elephants, lion, giraffe, antelope, antelope, and birdlife and has some of the richest flora and fauna found in Africa.
- Oil extraction and cultivation of cocoa are the key sectors of their economy.
- The famous volcano of Cameroon known locally as Mount Faka and the “Chariot of the Gods” is one of Cameroon’s main tourist attractions.
- The natural world heritage sites based in Cameroon are Campo Ma’an National Park, Dja Faunal Reserve and La Chefferie De Bafut.
- Cameroon has been called “Africa in miniature”. As one can see the wild animals, sunny beaches, mountains, extraordinary landscapes, forest walks and many other attractions which is spread all over the African Continent.
Cool, Funny, and Fun Facts About Cameroon
- Cameroon is the first African country to reach the quarter-final in soccer world cup.
- Really, really rich hunters from all over the world fly to Cameroon, risking malaria, fularia, and any other tropical diseases you can contemplate just to shoot a Bongo, a kind of antelope found only in Cameroon, which have white stripes to help them evade hunters.
- The world’s biggest frog comes from Cameroon. It is can grow up to 33 cm in length (over one foot) excluding the legs which can also be up to 1 foot long when stretched. They are known to be the largest species of frog on earth and are called Goliath Frog.
- Western Gorillas live in the forests of Cameroon, Republic of the Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Angola and Nigeria. They communicate using gestures, body postures, sounds, and by slapping their chests. Gorillas have also been taught sign language in captivity.
- African mango is actually an exotic and luscious fruit which is harvested in the tropical rainforests of Cameroon.This is a fruit which has long been consumed by the locals for several centuries. However, the extract itself is derived from the dikki nut, which is found inside the mango. According to them, the nut offers such magnificent medicinal benefits.
- Cameroon’s pygmy goats are similar to dogs in that one human year is like seven years to a pygmy goat.
- Mandrills are the the largest monkeys from the old world monkeys. The Mandrills are very shy and are known for their colorful face and buttocks. The Mandrills live in “the rainforest of equatorial Africa, from the Sanaga River in Cameroon, to the Congo River”.
- Bannerman’s Turaco (Tauraco bannermani) is brightly-coloured, but highly secretive. It spends its time foraging for fruit and berries in the canopies of the tropical montane forest of Cameroon. This turaco has a distinctive red crest, yellow bill and green, red, blue and yellow plumage.
- The Cameroon Mountain Chameleon-also called the Cameroon Sailfin, or the Mountain Two-Horned Chameleon-is a beautiful but shy Cameroonian species. males can be distinguished from females based on their two well-formed, forward oriented horns protruding from the rostral crest just above the most distal extent of the upper jaw. Females have two enlarged conical scales but their horns are not developed.
- Papilio andronicusis a species of swallowtail butterfly from the genus Papilio that is found in Cameroon.
- Ossiculumis a monotypic plant genus in the Orchidaceae It is endemic to Cameroon. Its natural habitat is subtropical or tropical moist lowland forests.
Historical and Cultural Facts About Cameroon
- Ginger beer is a popular, refreshing drink very much enjoyed in Cameroon, and throughout West Africa. It would be perfect after a game of football! It’s a non alcoholic drink kids and adults love.
- Cameroonian culture is greatly influenced by music and dance. Makossa and bikutsi are two from mainly depicted in the culture. The Beti are best-known for bikutsi music, which has gained immense popularity and has become a rival for the more urban and accessible makossa of Douala.
- The famous and the national dance of Cameroon- the Oku Juju Dance Yaounde or Subi Yaounde. They are both tried to maintain the originality but as well changed to march the modern time.
- If you are invited to a Cameroonian’s home, it would be nice to bring fruit, whisky or wine to the host.
- Masks of people there carrying different messages are a very important part of their culture.
- Traditional sports in Cameroon include canoe racing, swimming, tug of war and wrestling.
- 500 BC: The explorer Hanno from Carthage in North Africa (Tunisia) is the first foreigner who reports seeing Mount Cameroon.
- 200-100 BC: The first Bantu tribes immigrated to Cameroon from North (Nigeria). Bantu speaking tribes are traditionally agricultural requiring lots of space for farmland.
- In the 15th century, Fernão do Pó is considered the first European to explore the Wouri River, specifically the estuary of the Wouri River. After finding lepidopthalmus turneranus (Cameroon Ghost Shrimp) in abundance, he named the place “Rio dos Camarões”, meaning “River of Prawns”. The name Cameroon was derived from this name.
- The Bakas (Pygmies) were probably the earliest inhabitants of Cameroon. They still inhabit the forests of the South and East Regions.
- 1845: The trade between Cameroon and Europe gradually changes and develops. The first larger European settlement is founded by the English navy engineer and missionary Alfred Saker. Saker starts building schools in Douala at the mouth of Wouri River.
- Cameroon was created in 1961 when French and British Cameroon were merged, and both languages are spoken.