Guinea (Republic of Guinea, République de Guinée)
- Location: Western Africa
- Capital: Conakry
- Language: French, Mandinka (Maninkakan), Susu
- Population: 12.77 million
- Total Area: 245,858 sq km
- Currency: Guinean Franc
- Curious Alcohol Fact: Although a predominantly Muslim country, you can get beers in the capital and palm wine in the rural areas.
- Annual Average Liquor Consumption Per Capita: 0.35 liter
- Most Popular Drinks: Palm wine
Guinea Travel Video
Credits: City Travel Review
The Republic of Guinea is one of the most important nations in Francophone West Africa. A country of slightly over 10 million, Guinea is the source of the River Niger, the third largest river on the continent, which arises from its Fouta Djallon Highlands. Surrounding the country are Mali, Guinea-Bissau, Senegal, Ivory Coast, Liberia, Sierra Leone and the Atlantic Ocean on its western side. The capital city is Conakry and is the major port for the country. Guinea is stupendously rich as it has the largest deposit of bauxite in the world, although this has not translated into any meaningful level of prosperity for the people. Bauxite is the raw material for aluminum. There are also impressive reserves of high-quality iron ore but the economy is still not vibrant.
As it is the case with many of the African nations, Guinea is a multiethnic society and is home to more than 20 different ethnic and tribal groups. The predominant ones include the Fula, Mandinka and Susu. In addition to these, there are some other smaller tribes in the country and some of these are the Pelle. Dzialo and Kisi. In terms of religion, more than 80% of Guineans are adherents of the Islamic faith with others being either Christians or traditional worshippers. Many of the citizens are involved in agriculture while some others work at the nation’s bauxite mines to earn a living.
In the capital city of Conakry, I was able to request for French dishes at the restaurants but when I visited the rural areas, I had a taste of the real Guinean cuisine. At a naming ceremony in the Faranah region, I was served a bowl of specially-prepared rice called jollof. It had an orange color and was heavily spiced with curry powder, ginger and nutmeg. Jollof rice is delicious and is common all over the country, as in many other West African nations but because of the expenses, jollof rice is prepared only during special occasions like housewarming, weddings and like the naming ceremony of young Camara.
In various parts of the capital city, you can buy French wines and beers from various parts of the globe. In the villages and other rural settlements, branded beers are not too common but you will never miss a cup of palmie (palm wine). There is also a sweet drink called the jus de bissap or Hibiscus drink.
Places to Visit
Like many other nations in Africa, Guinea is a very beautiful one with many sites of attraction. One is the Nimba Mountain, which is on the border with Liberia and Ivory Coast. The beaches of Conakry are also fascinating and you will learn a lot by visiting the bauxite mines.
Story By World By Shotglass
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Special thanks to our contributors:
Adebayo Ahmed Adebola (Ilorin, Nigeria).