This small, very unique country, which is also one of the smallest on the African continent, is peopled with only 500,000 inhabitants. What is so special about it? The extremes of wealth and poverty, the beauties of the landscape, the multitude of cultures and the diverse ecosystem are the most obvious features.
First, visit the archipelago of the Gulf of Biafra and two of the most important islands of the country, Bioko and Annobon. The Bioko Island is the largest island of the Gulf of Guinea. The island is blessed with volcanoes and a valley, and offers visitors its beaches of dark fine sand where you can enjoy long hours of swimming. Here you will find intact places where nature reasserts itself. You should travel north, near the cities of Malabo, or west towards Luba, because the southern part of the island not very accessible. This Atlantic pearl is surrounded by Punta Santiago and Punta Sagre in the South, as well as by Punta Hermosa and Punta Europa in the North. The volcanic hills, typical landscape of Bioko, are certainly not vertiginous (about 600 m), however its highest peak reaches nearly 3000 m. For climbing enthusiasts, the Puente Cope Bridge will be a real challenge. From the “natural roof” of this island, the view is breathtaking.
The sea and water sports, cliffs, volcanoes… This place is a real tourist jewel where everyone will be delighted. The capital of the country, Malabo, is located on Bioko Island. Its squares, the town hall, the cathedral and its palaces have a Hispanic charm. The city is accessible by air, as it has an international airport. It is also the historic place of important findings from the pre-Neolithic period. Archaeological research has uncovered human remains dating back to 30 thousand years BC. Luba, for its part, has many beautiful beaches and a colonial hospital. Luba Crater Scientific Reserve in the south of Luba preserves an immense biological richness (for example, sea turtles have found refuge there). Thanks to its waterfalls, humid forests, lianas, and beaches of black sand, this site is one of the most beautiful of the country. A little further up, dive into the clear water of the Arena Blanca. The second island of Annobón does not have such an economic influence on the country as its distant neighbor, Bioko, but is also home to many natural beauties. Also hilly with volcanoes, the island has a beautiful lake. The inhabitants are very attached to their traditions and live in harmony with nature. In complete tranquility, they fish tuna and even whales, pick fruits and enjoy their coastal plains. During your trip to Equatorial Guinea, stop by the charming villages of Annobón and discover the islets near the coast. As for the mainland, whose main city is “the modern” Bata, it is nestled between Cameroon in the north and Gabon in the south. Abundantly wooded, you will enjoy walking in its national parks. Travel through its humid and magnificent equatorial forests, home to many exotic terrestrial and aquatic species. Wild orchids, elephants and gorillas await everyone who walks in the shadows of gigantic trees. Despite all the natural wonders and underground treasures such as oil, the vast majority of inhabitants remain particularly poor. This is also reflected in the road infrastructure, which is often very old, unpaved and poorly maintained. So think wisely before renting a car in Equatorial Guinea. Watch out for police checks, very present. The equatorial climate of the country makes the humidity there quite important, just as much as the heat. The drought lasts between December and May. Plan your trip to Equatorial Guinea according to the weather. Never take a picture without asking permission before. Instead, buy bottled water because tap water is usually not drinkable. The local currency is the CFA franc. To enter the country, a valid passport and visa are required.
Art and culture
On October 12, 1968 the country becomes independent. For this occasion, Independence Day is organized each time in a different city. This is the event of the year because the president and all his ministers are present. If you are in the country, take part in traditional cultural celebrations that bring together many Equatorial Guineans.
Equatorial Guinea is mainly populated by Bantu. With regards to religion, the vast majority (more than 85%) of people are Christian.
What to visit
Monte Temelon Nature Reserve, Muni Estuary, Monte Alen National Park, Los Altos de Nsork, Rio Muni, Caldera de Luba Science Reserve, Pico Basile National Park, Malabo (Cathedral, Malabo Squares, Woman and Independence), courthouse, presidential palace, town hall and its gardens), Mossumu site, San Antonie de Pale, Bata (clock square, cathedral, central market), Bioko beaches, harbors, Elobey Grande Island, of Príncipe, São Tomé, Annobón, Gulf of Biafra.
The cuisine here is strongly marked by Hispanic traditions, which is especially evident in the few restaurants in this country. But apart from that, the local gastronomy is no less rich. Go to the city markets that offer all the specialties and typical products. The key products are corn, cassava and peanuts, often accompanied by yam. Discover Osuru Mandjaga, Akouemi’i, Ko’oa-Mbong, Angomo or even Ebafono. Vegetables and fish also find a good place – Bocao, Supu Sa Topepam etc.