The French geographer Bruneau, calls Cameroon „Afrique in miniature – Africa the little one“. Geographically Cameroon belongs to Central Africa, but shows rather as the connection between both great regions West Africa and Central Africa. This reflected also in flora, fauna, population and culture.
Land overview & open space
To quote once again the French geographer Jean-Claude Bruneau:
„Cameroon appears like a crossroad at which the whole black continent seems to give to itself a rendezvous: Africa of the rain forest and that of the Savannah; Africa of the Bantu people and the Sudan people; Africa of the Muslims, the Christians and the animists; the French speaking ones, in English-speaking Africa even speaking the Arabic.“
The state area of the republic Cameroon is about 475,000 square kilometres’ and so bigger than one third of the Federal Republic of Germany. Cameroon has access to the sea over the 400-km-long coast which applies along the bay of Bonny – formerly bay of Biafra) and which is a part of the golf of Guinea. Nigeria is the neighbouring state and Cameroon shares the longest common border shares with it, after that following Chad, the Central African Republic, Congo, Gabon and Equatorial Guinea.
Above all, in run of the colonial history the state borders and border corrections changed with many African countries. There are even examples from recent times like the „border settlement“ which was carried out by the Chad region between Nigeria and Cameroon in follows of the Bakassi conflicts.
The history of Cameroon
Up to the 15th century numerous small monarchies had developed in the area of to-day’s Cameroon. When the Portuguese landed in the estuary of the Wouri in 1492, the coast became in the 16th century a centre of trade – including slave trade. Today organisations like „Les Anneaux de la Mémoire/Mémoires libérées“ are working on the history of Cameroon. The Fulbe conquered at the same time the area from the north and founded the Islamic principalities which spread out till the 19th century up to the centre of today’s Cameroon.
Also, Cameroon disposes like most of the African countries of a colonial past. About three quarters of one century, the history of the country were characterized by Germans, Britons and French. After the end of the German colonial rule in 1919, Cameroon became a mandated territory of the League of Nations which split the country into two areas: 1/5 of the country in British and 4/5 administers in French. Only in 1961 this division was lifted by a UN referendum at least partially again, while expressed itself of the southern parts of British Cameroon for the union with the „French part become independently in the meantime“.
Indeed, 40 years of separate history under two different “Rulers” and as well the circumstances and after-effects of the „union“ left tracks till the present. The most remark-able reports of this time are the official bilingualism, the different school systems and court systems as well as the separatist’s movement.
Living and care
In the cities inexpensive and qualitatively satisfactory residential opportunities are rare. Even in the provincial towns the living space is not very propitious, but houses with court or garden are easier to rent.
The concerns of supply, so is that in towns like Douala or Yaoundé comparably with European standards. The shopping offer reaches from the street vendor over the small town quarter markets up to the big supermarkets. There you can buy everything. In the smaller towns the offer is more limited, and in the country there are, especially in the north provinces, only weekly markets where the things of the everyday need can be bought. Besides, on account of the longer routes of transport many products are more expensive in the north, this is valid above all for import goods, as far as these do not come from Nigeria and also for fruit and vegetables which must be delivered from the south. That’s why the cost of living is dependent in Cameroon on many factors.
In case of power and water, the same care security exists in Cameroon not like in Germany. Indeed, this is also coined on the regional level very differently and, besides that, is dependent on the season.
The leisure offers reach in the big towns of the Karting up to horse riding and golf. Many hotels or sports clubs offering swimming pools or tennis places. Besides, team sports like handball and of course football you can find also joggers everywhere, particularly in the urbane areas. On the coast the water sports are a regional focus and in the north it is the horse riding. Many areas of Cameroon also offering hiking and bike tours. Who would like to attach social contacts, for that sport is one of the best ways.
Sightseeing in Cameroon
Cameroon has developed on account of the variety of contrasts to a popular holiday country. It rightly makes the appearance as if Cameroon bundles up everything what is typical for the African continent. Breathtaking sceneries, modern towns, more than 200 different tribes and traditional villages – all this are typical for Cameroon.
Cameroon is a destination for individualists and adventurers. Only if one can get involved in the magic, can be sure that it is possible to collect the impressions which will be remembered even after years. Thanks to the numerous places of interest not only the nature lovers can enjoy Cameroon but also the cultural lovers.
The rain forests of Sanga
A rain forest which is by the river Sanga arouses enthusiasm above all by his origin. Even if Cameroon is a very modern country, the rain forest of Sanga reminds not only of the origins, but also of the numerous additions of the wilderness. Above all on account of his rich animal and plant life the rain forest is very well-known. However, who would like to discover one of the rain forest inhabitants, he needs not only courage, but also a lot of patience.
The nightingale cases
There is one more attraction by the river Sanga. The impressive waterfalls are very majestic and they convince the viewer not only by her size, but also they create at the same time change in the shallow and natural river picture.
The North of Cameroon
If it is a matter of exploring the origins of the country, then the north of Cameroon is the right place. Since there are the small villages which persuade because of their enthusiasm, nevertheless and their charm. By no means, but the small village Koza is a must see. The village at a height of 1,100 meter, is very traditionally and it is not possible to find out more about the culture than at this place. Maba is only a few kilometers’ away from Koza and the view from there is more than majestic, because from there it is possible to take the first picture of the magnificent Bornou plateau.
Travelling to Cameroon
The entry is permitted to Cameroon only with a valid visa. In the country itself an extension of the Visa is not possible. That’s why it is important to travel with one visa which is valid for the whole duration of the stay in Cameroon.
Remark: With the entry and crossing the border an international vaccination identity card with the proof of a valid yellow fever vaccination on Cameroonian side must be presented.
Who remains longer than three months in the country, that must contact at the local immigration authority.