Welcome to Cameroon

Cameroon is a country of different landscapes and climates, with dry Sahel regions in the north, grasslands and highlands in the centre and dense rain forests across the south. These forests are important for wildlife and the environment. Come and find out about Cameroon's natural wealth and the development challenges it faces.

People & Culture

Mosaic of cultures

With over 250 ethnic groups, Cameroon’s peoples offer a rich pattern of cultures and customs.

Butterflies

Collector’s items

Locals along the Nyong River in Cameroon catch butterflies and insects to sell as collector’s items. Elodie and Louis-Marie take a look.

Gorillas

Primate protection

The forests of Cameroon are home to many endangered primate species, including the Western gorilla. Elodie and Louis-Marie visit a sanctuary where they meet some of these amazing creatures, as well as a playful group of chimpanzees.

Children's stories

Our stories

Some of the youngsters at the SOS Children's Village of Mbalmayo have made films of stories they'd like to tell. One shows the importance of friendship. Another tells the tale of how a father finally gives his daughter the chance of a better life. The third is a story from the staff of the SOS Village, who didn't want to miss the opportunity to make a film of their own!

Scouts

Scouting in Mbalmayo

Louis-Marie joins his old scout group in Mbalmayo and the experience takes him down memory lane.

Climate & Agriculture

Variety of crops

A wide range of crops are grown across Cameroon, both for domestic consumption and the export market, where cocoa beans are the highest-earning harvest.

Women

A woman’s status varies by country and region across Africa. In many parts, women struggle against inequality in laws, education, pay and domestic responsibilities.

Women’s health is also at risk from traditional practices such as early marriage. But with better education, girls can make more informed choices, leading to the greater development of African nations.

Tourism & Communications

Tourism for the adventurous

With its amazing biodiversity, the largest mountain in West Africa, striking beaches and cultural richness, Cameroon has much to offer the adventurous tourist.

Economy & Industry

Natural wealth

Cameroon’s economy benefits from the country’s wealth of natural resources, such as oil, natural gas, timber, diamonds and metal ores.

Health

Africa has a high number of communicable diseases, which place a huge burden on healthcare systems. The vast majority of malaria cases and HIV/AIDS-related deaths occur in Africa; these two diseases currently represent the greatest threats.

With low investment in healthcare and a severe shortage of medical staff, many countries struggle to meet the health needs of their people.

Welcome to Cameroon

Hello. We’re Louis-Marie and Elodie. Welcome to Cameroon.

Cameroon has a whole range of natural environments, from the dry semi-desert of the north to the lush equatorial forests of the south. We live in the southern central region, near to the capital Yaoundé. Like much of the south, our area is home to amazing forests. Take a look in our videos.

Education & Jobs

An educated people

Most young Cameroonians are able to read and write, but formal jobs are scarce and the majority of people still make their living from the land.

History

The first humans are thought to have lived in Africa and powerful African empires formed from the medieval age onwards.

However, today's African nations were shaped by the European powers who colonised this vast continent. Having gained their independence, many African countries are still coming to terms with the legacy left by their colonisers.

Facts & Figures

Small for Africa

Though smaller than many African countries, at 475,442 square kilometres, Cameroon is nearly twice the size of the United Kingdom (242,514 square kilometres in area.)

Climate

Africa is a massive continent, with a range of climates. Some regions are hot and dry, like the Sahara, Kalahari and Namib deserts. Other parts are wet or covered in tropical rainforest. Conditions also vary by altitude, from the dry salt pans of the Danakil Depression (one of the lowest points on earth) to the snowcaps (at certain times) of the highest mountains. Weather-wise, Africa has it all!

Food & Daily life

Varied cuisine

A diverse range of crops are grown across Cameroon and the country's cuisine is known as one of the widest in West Africa.

Poverty

Across the rest of the world, absolute poverty has halved over recent decades, but in Africa it has barely fallen.

About two-fifths of the population of sub-Saharan Africa survive week by week on what someone in the UK earns from just one hour's work on the minimum wage.

Forestry

Precious wood

Cameroon’s forests are precious because of their vital importance to the environment, but they also have a part to play in creating much-needed revenue for the country.

Poverty & Healthcare

Low life expectancy

High levels of poverty and the regular threat of illnesses such as malaria and cholera, mean that Cameroonians have a life expectancy of just 51 years.

Geography & Wildlife

Africa in Miniature

Cameroon has many different natural environments – from the dry Sahel region of the north, to the grasslands in the centre and dense rain forests in the south – which is why the country is sometimes described as ‘Africa in Miniature’.

Agriculture & Famine

A quarter of the population of sub-Saharan Africa is undernourished and famines can impact whole regions.

Land is available to grow more food locally, but investment is needed in  technologies such as irrigation for land to be used effectively. Farmers must also adapt to climate change if they are to feed the continent's rising population.

History & Politics

Sharing the country

Cameroon is shared by a variety of ethnic groups and thanks to its colonial past, the country also contains both English and French-speaking systems.

Geography & Wildlife

With its varied geography and diverse habits, the African continent is home to a wide range of flora and fauna. Though famous for its 'big game' animals, Africa has huge numbers of fish, mammal, bird, reptile, amphibian and insect species, as well as many tree, plant and flower species.

Foods

Africa has some of the most distinctive cuisines and flavours in the world. Food varies widely, but there are commonalities across regions. Depending on what's grown locally, dishes are also influenced by the traders, immigrants and rulers who settled across the continent. Arab, Asian and European elements blend in with traditional African cooking.

Development

‘People are the real wealth of a nation.’ This is the belief of the United Nations, whose Millenium Development Goals provide a framework for improving the lives of millions.

It helps when nations are peaceful, stable and growing economically. But where even the poorest countries focus on health, education and creating fairer societies, more Africans have the chance of a better life.

Human map

Different regions

Cameroon has ten provinces or districts, where the foods vary according to the geography and climate. The youngsters from the SOS village provide a personal guide to each region and its produce.

Games & Sport

Africa is home to arguably the oldest-recorded games and sports. While some are only known through archaeology, modern-day games and sports such as Mancala/Mankala and Nubian wrestling are very much alive today.

Of course, new sports have come along to claim the attention of Africans. You may have heard of one - it's called football.

Cameroon map

Explore Cameroon

Explore some of the towns and cities of Cameroon, as well as its most popular national parks.

Children

Around one in six children born in sub-Saharan Africa don't live to see their fifth birthday and life can be tough for those who do.

What are the common challenges facing African children and how do their lives compare with those of children in the UK?

Nyong River

Nature by boat

Boats are often the best way to see dense tropical rainforests and the Cameroon chief reporters are taken in a traditional wooden pirogue along the Nyong River.

Cameroon topics Facts & Figures Poverty & Healthcare Food & Daily life Scouts People & Culture Geography & Wildlife Climate & Agriculture Gorillas Human map Welcome to Cameroon Forestry Economy & Industry Butterflies Education & Jobs Children's stories History & Politics Nyong River Cameroon map Tourism & Communications