Description of Equatorial Guinea
Equatorial Guinea is located in West Africa. It is divided into 2 parts, a mainland and islands. It was formerly a colony of Spain and shares borders with Gabon and Cameroon. Equatorial Guinea is one of the biggest producers of oil in the Sub Sahara, following behind Nigeria and Angola. Since the country was discovered it has become an economic star. However, it is one of the most corrupt countries of the world as well. It is not uncommon to see the leaders of the country asking for bribes from all corners of the earth.
It is believed that there was a large pygmy population in the Rio Muni region. Now there are only isolated pockets of these people left in the north. There were Bantu migrations that took place between the 17th century and the 19th century which brought some coastal tribes to the area and at a later time the Fang.
Fernao do Po, a Portuguese explorer who was looking for a way to India, is given the credit of discovering Bioko island in the year 1472. Po named the island Formosa which means beautiful. However, the island was quickly renamed after its discoverer. Fernando Po and the island Annobon became Portuguese colonies in the year 1474.
In the year 1778, the island, with the adjacent islets as well as commercial rights of the mainland were given to Spain in exchange for territory located on the American continent. A base was established by the United Kingdom from the year 1827 through 1843 for slave trade. This was moved to Sierra Leone in 1843 upon an agreement with Spain. In the year 1844, it became known as the Spanish territory of Guinea Ecuatorial. The portion of the mainland was called Rio Muni and it became a protectorate in the year 1885 and in 1900 a colony. By the year 1959 all 3 of the regions were combined to become Spanish Guinea.
The country gained its independence from Spain in 1968. Since that time it has been ruled by the first president, Francisco Macias Nguema, who was a brutal dictator that despised intellectuals. He killed many of the Bubi minority and banned fishing. He also gave himself several titles including one that was president for life. In the year 1979 he was overthrown by Teodoro Oblang. Nguema was eventually captured and shot.
Oblang has ruled with less violence, but the regime is still extremely repressive. Political power is central to his small clan and most of the senior members of government are related in some way. There has been a considerable amount of wealth brought to the country after oil was discovered in 1996. Most of the money goes to the government and most of the people who live their remain poor.
Visiting Equatorial Guinea
The language of the country is officially Spanish. French and Portuguese are spoken in the country as a well. There are a few people who speak English, even if you are in the capital city.
There are many beaches in the country, which is something to consider during your sight seeing. You will want to make sure you take the appropriate measures in order to stay safe when you are visiting the beaches.
There are some great places to eat in Equatorial Guinea, especially in Malabo. There are coffee shops, pizza places, as well as Asian cuisine, and other great restaurants. There is a lot of wine available in the country and a lot of bars as well. There are a number of places to stay in the country because of the many foreign workers and investors.
When visiting you should know that you cannot take photos of any of the government buildings unless you get permission to do so. You should not photograph government buildings, airports, or anything that has to do with the military or that could be considered of strategic value. Most of the people in the country do not like to have their picture taken; this is true even of the children. A general rule to follow is to simply not bring a camera with you when you are walking through town as you will likely end up in trouble with the police. You should also avoid conversations about politics while you are visiting.
Some facts about Equatorial Guinea
Gallery of Equatorial Guinea
Equatorial Guinea video guide
More information about Equatorial Guinea
Climate of Equatorial Guinea:
Top cities of Equatorial Guinea
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