(Republic of Sierra Leone)
Sierra Leone Flag
• Location: Western Africa
• Capital: Freetown
• Language(s): English
• Population: 6,450,023
• Total Area: 71,740 sq km
• Currency: Leone
• Curious Alcohol Fact: The most popular drink in the country is actually palm wine and is called poyo in the local tongue.
• Annual Average Liquor Consumption Per Capita: 9.71 liters
• Most Popular Drink(s): Poyo (palm wine), European beers
A country located in West Africa, Sierra Leone is an amazing country with an intriguing history. The nation is bounded by the Atlantic Ocean and other nations in the subregion (Guinea and Liberia). The capital city is Freetown, and like almost all other countries on the continent, Sierra Leone also underwent colonization until it became independent in 1961, a year after Nigeria got hers too. Both nations are former British colonies. Apart from the capital city of Freetown, the other important cities in the country are Makeni, Bo and Kenema. Located in the tropics, which confers a hot and wet climate on the country, Sierra Leone is one of the richest nations on earth in terms of mineral deposits. There are vast deposits of titanium (used in aircraft manufacturing) and bauxite (the raw material for aluminum).
Sierra Leoneans are some of the most pleasant Africans I have ever met. I will never forget a friend named Maukeni. We made during my vacation in the country and she told me a lot about her wonderful nation. In Sierra Leone, there are numerous ethnic groups and they are almost 20 in number. Of these, the largest are the Mende and Temne. The Mende live in the southern and eastern parts of the country. The Temne on the other hand, are found in the northern part of the country. In addition to these two groups, there are others such as the Kuranko, Sherbro, Kissi, Kono and Limba. There is also a population of Creoles in the capital city. The ancestors of the Creoles are said to be the free slaves who once stayed in the coastal parts of the country. The major religions are Islam, Christianity and animism.
If there is anything I love about the Sierra Leones, it is their ability to stimulate your taste buds with their exotic dishes. In the country, hospitality is part of the culture and wherever you go, you will be welcomed warmly even if your hosts have never set their eyes on you before. Sierra Leone is a wonderful country and so is the cuisine. Rice features prominently in the meals and is usually taken with soups which can come in various forms –some are made from vegetables while others are made with peanuts. Spices are generously used while meat and fish are common. Fish is particularly popular in the communities close to the ocean or rivers. In some other places, the staple diet is cassava and there is a special bread made from it.
After eating a plate of delicious meal, these West Africans ‘down’ the bolus with a bottle of beer, a keg of palm wine or a can of fresh fruit juice. The most popular brands of beer in the country are Star and Guinness. For those that prefer soft drinks, they are everywhere you go in the country.
Story By World By Shotglass
©2013 World By Shotglass. All Rights Reserved
Special thanks to our contributors:
Daniel Krasnopolsky (Woodmere, NY, USA)
Adebayo Ahmed Adebola (Ilorin, Nigeria).
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