Guinea – Republic of Guinea State in West Africa

Guinea

Guinea Anthem

Guinea is located in West Africa off the Atlantic Ocean, which washes along a 300 km long rugged coastline. It has an area of 245,800 km². The country’s territory lies within the ancient African plate, broken up by numerous faults and faults with volcanic outcrops. Until 1958 Guinea was a French colony, now it is a presidential republic with a population of about 12.4 million. The official language is French.

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General Information

Much of Guinea lies in the subequatorial belt. Monthly average temperatures range from 18°C to 27°C. The hottest month is April, while the coldest is August. Precipitation falls mainly in summer, but it is distributed very unevenly over the territory: on the coast, up to 4,300 mm of rain falls during 170 rainy days a year, while in the interior, separated from the ocean by a mountain massif, it is not more than 1,500 mm.

Deep river valleys and hilly lowlands make Guinea look like a mountainous country. The largest highlands – the Fouta Djallon plateau (the highest mountain – Tamge, 1537 m), limiting the narrow coastal plain, and the North Guinean highlands in the south-east (with the highest mountain Nimba, 1752 m above sea level). The Fouta Djallon Plateau has been called by geographers “the water tower of West Africa,” because the largest rivers of the region, the Gambia and the Senegal, begin here. The Niger River (here called Joliba) also originates in the North Guinean highlands. Numerous rivers of Guinea are usually not navigable because of the numerous rapids and waterfalls, as well as because of sharp fluctuations in water levels.

What strikes the traveler is the bright red or red-brown color of the soils of the savannas and forests of Guinea, which are rich in iron oxides. Despite the poverty of these soils, which makes farming difficult, the natural vegetation is very rich. Along the rivers there are still gallery rainforests, although in most other places they have been replaced by dry rainforests and wooded savannahs as a result of human activity. True tallgrass savannas can be seen in the north of the country, and mangroves can be seen on the ocean coast. Coconut palm, Guinea oil palm, and other exotic plants are common along the ocean shore, making even the streets of large cities look like a botanical garden. The animal world of the country is still rich: there are elephants, hippos, various species of antelope, panthers, cheetahs, numerous monkeys (especially baboons living in large herds). Also worth mentioning are forest cats, hyenas, mongoose, crocodiles, large and small snakes and lizards and hundreds of species of birds. Insects are also numerous, among which there are many dangerous ones that carry yellow fever and sleeping sickness (tsetse fly).

Virtually the entire population of Guinea belongs to the Negro race. The most numerous people are the Fulbe, inhabiting mainly the Fouta Djallon Plateau. Other peoples belong to the Mande linguistic subgroup: the Malinka, Korako, and Susu. The official language, French, is spoken by only a small proportion of the population, while the most common languages are Ful, Malinke, and Susu. 60% of the population is Muslim, about 2% are Christian, and the rest follow traditional beliefs. Most of the population is engaged in agriculture (cattle breeding, and the cultivation of rice, cassava, yams, and corn). The capital and largest city of Guinea is Conakry (about 1,400,000 inhabitants). Other large cities are mostly industrial centers and transportation hubs Kankan, Kandia, Labé, which are not usually of interest to tourists.

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History of Guinea

Guinea was colonized by France in the late 19th century and from 1904 was part of the federation of French West Africa. In a referendum in 1958, the Guinean people voted for independence, which was proclaimed on October 2. A. Sekou Toure was elected president of the country, who established a one-party system in the country, supported by a powerful repressive apparatus. In the field of foreign policy he pursued a moderately pro-Soviet course, while in the field of domestic policy he was committed to scientific socialism with African specificity. The result of this strategy was a total socialization of property, at some stages even the number of traders in the bazaars was regulated by fiat. By the early 1980s, about one million people had migrated abroad.

After Touré’s death in 1984, a group of military men seized power, creating the Military Committee of National Revival led by Colonel Lansana Conté, who eliminated the main rivals in the struggle for power over the next three years. Under Conte, foreign policy was oriented toward greater cooperation with France, the United States, and Great Britain, and the country began to enjoy the support of international financial institutions. A side effect of relaxation of political control was a sharp increase in corruption; during the time of Conte, Guinea became one of the world leaders by this indicator. In the late 1980s, the process of democratization of political life began, with regular elections held since the beginning of the next decade. Conte won the presidential elections three times (in 1993, 1998, 2003), at the parliamentary elections his Party of Unity and Progress, each round was accompanied by strong opposition protests, to which the local power ministries traditionally react very harshly. The continuing deterioration of the economic situation in the country in 2007 led to massive demonstrations demanding the resignation of the government and the adoption of urgent measures to overcome the crisis. Negotiations between the authorities and the trade union movement resulted in the transfer of the post of prime minister to a compromise candidate with a mandate until the next elections scheduled for mid-2008.

Geography of Guinea

More than half of the country is occupied by low mountains and plateaus. The Atlantic coast is heavily cut by estuaries and occupied by alluvial-marine lowlands 30-50 km wide. Further the plateau rises steeply Futa Djallon, dissected into separate massifs up to 1538 m high (Mount Tamge). To the east of it there is an upland accumulation-denudation foothill plain to the south of which the North Guinean Upland rises that changes into base plateaux (≈800 m) and boulder plateaux (Mount Nimba is the highest point of the country 1752 m high).

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Guinea’s most important minerals are bauxites, the reserves of which rank first in the world. Also gold, diamonds, ores of ferrous and nonferrous metals, zircon, rutile and monazite are mined.

Climate is subequatorial with sharply expressed alternation of dry and wet seasons. Humid summers last from 3-5 months in the north-east to 7-10 months in the south. Air temperatures on the coast (≈27°C) are higher than in the interior of the country (≈24°C), except during periods of drought, when the Kharmatan wind blowing from the Sahara increases the air temperature to 38°C.

Guinea has a large and dense river network, including rivers flowing from the plateaus to the eastern lowlands and flowing into the Niger, as well as rivers that flow from the plateaus to the Atlantic Ocean. The rivers are navigable only in small, mostly estuarine areas.

Forests occupy about 60% of the country, but most of them are represented by secondary sparse deciduous trees. Native moist evergreen forests have survived only on the windward slopes of the North Guinea Highlands. Along the river valleys, gallery forests are found in fragments. Along the coast, mangroves grow in places. Once diverse forest fauna is preserved mainly in protected areas (hippos, genettes, civets, forest ducks). Elephants, leopards and chimpanzees have been almost completely exterminated.

Guinea’s Economy

Guinea has abundant mineral, hydropower, and agricultural resources, but remains an economically underdeveloped country.

Guinea has deposits of bauxites (almost half of world reserves), iron ore, diamonds, gold and uranium.

More than 75 percent of the working people are engaged in agriculture. There are rice, coffee, pineapples, tapioca, bananas. Cattle, sheep and goats are bred.

Exports are bauxites, aluminum, gold, diamonds, coffee, and fish.

The main export partners (in 2006) are Russia (11%), Ukraine (9.6%), South Korea (8.8%).

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Guinea

Guinea or full name Republic of Guinea is one of the poorest countries of the world, located in Western Africa. There are several states with the word “Guinea” in their names. There are several countries in the world, but the Republic of Guinea is the only one. Despite all its natural wealth, the state is one of the ten poorest countries in the world. Guinea – it is beautiful landscapes, exotic animals and plants, old fortresses of the first European settlers, mosques and palaces. Despite the fact that a lot of attention is paid to international tourism, it is very poorly developed. Before the arrival of Europeans in West Africa, these lands were the property of the empires of Ghana and Mali. In 1892 the colony of French Guinea was founded as part of the French West Africa. The country became independent only in 1958.

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Guinea – a land of spectacular landscapes

Contents of the article:

The capital

Conakry, capital of Guinea

The capital of the Republic of Guinea is Conakry, the country’s major port, through which up to 65% of all cargo passes, located on the Atlantic Ocean. The capital was founded in 1885 on the site of two small fishing villages. The city was built as the center of the French colony in this part of West Africa. Today, Conakry is a beautiful and successful seaside city stretching on a narrow strip of land, with developed industry, higher educational institutions, administrative offices, museums, parks and squares. The capital is divided into two halves – one half is located on the Calum Peninsula, the other half on Tombo Island, with a connecting dam running between them.

Flag of Guinea

The flag of the Republic of Guinea is a rectangular cloth, with an aspect ratio of 2:3, consisting of three vertical stripes of equal size: the stripes are from left to right in this order: red, yellow, green.

Symbolism

  • The red color stands for the blood of the African people, spilled in the struggle for the independence of the country
  • Yellow symbolizes the scorching African sun and the abundance of minerals.
  • Green – the color of agriculture, the nature of Guinea, as well as a symbol of prosperity and fertile lands of the country

These are the Pan-African colors that symbolize the unity of African nations: red for “Labor,” red for “Labor,” yellow for “Justice,” and green for “Sovereignty.” Green – “Solidarity”.

The flag of Guinea

The coat of arms of Guinea is a composition in the center of which there is a golden shield. The base of the shield is painted in the colors of the national flag: red, yellow and green. Above the shield is a flying dove with a branch and below it a ribbon with the national motto: “Travail, Justice, Solidarité” (“Labor, Justice, Solidarity”).

Symbolism

  • The red color stands for the blood of the African people, spilled in the struggle for the independence of the country
  • Yellow symbolizes the scorching African sun and the abundance of minerals.
  • Green – the color of agriculture, the nature of Guinea, as well as a symbol of prosperity and fertile lands of the country
  • Dove – symbol of peace and order

“Liberty” (“Liberté”) is the national anthem of Guinea, adopted in 1958, after the country gained independence. The melody to the anthem was written by Kodofo Moussa on the basis of a folk tune and the author of the words is unknown. Read the text of the anthem of Guinea…

Currency

The national currency of Guinea is the Guinean franc (international designation GNF). The Guinean Franc was created on March 1, 1960 to replace the CFA franc. In circulation there are coins in denominations of 1, 5, 10, 25 and 50 francs and banknotes in denominations of 100, 500, 1000, 5000, 10,000 and 20,000 francs.

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Guinea banknotes

The currency of Guinea (Guinea banknotes)

Guinea on the world map

Guinea – a state in West Africa, bordered in the north by Senegal, in the north-west by Guinea-Bissau, in the north and northeast by Mali, in the east by Côte d’Ivoire, in the south by Liberia and Sierra Leone, and washed by the Atlantic Ocean on the west. The Republic of Guinea covers an area of 245,855 km².

Guinea on the world map

Geographically, the country can be divided into four regions:

  • Maritime (Lower) Guinea is located in the west of the country and is a flat lowland area up to 32 km wide, with elevations less than 150 m above sea level;
  • Middle Guinea is the Fouta-Jallon sandstone massif, crossing the country from north to south, with peaks of 1,300 to 1,400 m. It is characterized by a predominance of savannah landscapes, with mountain meadows at the highest elevations;
  • Upper Guinea is a savannah region located east of the Fouta Djallon massif, on the plains in the upper Niger River basin;
  • Forest Guinea is a savannah and tropical forest region located in the southeast of the country, occupying part of the North Guinean highlands.

Guinea’s river network is dense and abundant. The largest rivers are the Niger, the third longest in Africa (4,180 km), the Gambia and the Senegal. About 60% of the country is covered by forests. Guinea’s highest point is Mount Nimba (1,752 m).

What is worth seeing in Guinea?

Sites of Guinea

Here’s a small list of places of interest, which you should pay attention to when planning excursions in Guinea:

  • Great Mosque of Conakry
  • Botanical Garden
  • Marie Falls
  • The Tinkiso Falls
  • Guinea Forests
  • Gangaun Mountains
  • Nimba Mountains
  • Leoneo-Liberian Plateau
  • Conakry National Museum
  • Mount Nimba Nature Reserve
  • Northern Guinea Highlands

The Biggest Cities

  • Conakry, the capital city of the Republic of Guinea
  • Nzerekore
  • Kindia
  • Boke
  • Kankan
  • Kisidugu
  • Gueckedou
  • Kamsar
  • Macenta
  • Mama

Climate

The climate of Guinea is subequatorial, with humid summers and dry winters. In the northeast of the country summers last 4-5 months, and 7-9 months in the south. Monthly average temperatures throughout the year range from +20°C to +28°C, but during dry spells the temperature rises to 38°C to 40°C, influenced by the “Harmattan” wind from the Sahara. blowing from the Sahara. Precipitation falls mainly in the period from May to October, but it is distributed rather unevenly across the country: 4000-4300 mm per year, and in the interior, separated from the ocean by a mountain range – not more than 1500 mm.

Population

Guineans

Guinea has a population of 13,663,578, of which 96 per cent are African, with about 30 nationalities and ethnic groups. The largest representatives are the Fulbe (40%), the Malinke (30%) and the Susu (20%), and 10%. – Other small ethnic groups. 4% of the inhabitants of the country are Europeans, Lebanese and Syrians. The average life expectancy of women is 54 – 56 years, and of men 52 – 54 years.

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Guinea is a multilingual country with about 40 languages, but French is the official language. French is the language of the government and official institutions, which in fact is spoken by only a quarter of the country’s population. Other languages have the status of “national” languages: Fula, Malinke, Susu, Kisi, Kpelle (Herze), and Toma.

Religion

The predominant religion in Guinea is Sunni Islam, practiced by 84% of the Christian population. About 8% of the population are Christian (mostly Catholics) and 8% are followers of traditional African beliefs (animalism, fetishism, ancestor worship and natural forces).

Holidays

  • January 1 – New Year
  • April 3rd – Day of Declaration of the Second Republic (1984)
  • March – April – Easter and Easter holidays
  • 1 May – Labour Day
  • 25 May – Africa Day (Organization of African Unity)
  • 15 August – Assumption of the Virgin Mary
  • October 2 – Independence Day (Guinea held a referendum on independence from colonial France)
  • December 25 – Christmas
  • December – Eid al-Fitr (end of the month of Ramadan)
  • December mobile date – birth anniversary of the Prophet Muhammad
  • December mobile date – Eid al-Fitr (Feast of Sacrifice)

Souvenirs

souvenirs from Guinea

Here is a small list of the most common souvenirs that tourists usually bring from Guinea:

  • African drums
  • clay jugs
  • Paintings with bright African colors
  • beadwork
  • masks and figurines made of precious woods
  • Clothes and shoes in national style
  • tableware
  • Statuettes of animals: elephants, hippos, giraffes, turtles and crocodiles.

“No nail, no rod” or customs regulations

Guinea’s customs regulations do not restrict the importation of foreign currency, but a declaration is required. And exports without a declaration are up to $800.

Allowed:

Duty-free importation of no more than 200 pieces of cigarettes, 1 liter of spirits, 2 liters of dry wine, and items and food for personal consumption – for an amount not exceeding $800

Prohibited:

Importation of drugs and psychotropic drugs and medicines, gold in bullion, in the form of plates or scrap, and precious stones (without permission from the Ministry of Finance of Guinea) is prohibited. Weapons, gold and precious stones, as well as wood, ivory, horn and leather objects made by local craftsmen, are subject to mandatory export controls. A special permit is required for their export.

Electricity

The mains voltage is 220 Volts and the frequency is 50 Hz. Socket type: Type C , type F , type K .

Gentle Reader! If you have been to this country or have an interesting story to tell about Guinea . WRITE! After all, your lines may be useful and informative for visitors of our site “Around the planet step by step” and for all lovers of travel.

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