Guinea Bissau

Independence was unilaterally declared in Guinea Bissau on 24 September 1973. The country is bordered by Senegal to the north and Guinea to the south and east, with the Atlantic Ocean to its west. Lying mostly between latitudes 11° and 13°N (a small area is south of 11°), and longitudes 13° and 17°W, Guinea Bissau’s capital city is Bissau. The official currency is the CFA Francs.

The population of Guinea-Bissau is ethnically diverse and has many distinct languages, customs, and social structures. Guinea-Bissauans can be divided into the following ethnic groups: Fula and the Mandinka-speaking people, who comprise the largest portion of the population and are concentrated in the north and northeast; the Balanta and Papel people, who live in the southern coastal regions; and the Manjaco and Mancanha, who occupy the central and northern coastal areas. Most of the remainder are mestiços of mixed Portuguese and African descent, including a Cape Verdean minority.

Notable Places to Visit

Ilhas de Orango National Park

West of Bubaque is Ilha de Orango, which, along with several other islands, forms part of the Orango Islands National Park. Orango is one of the Bolama Bijagós Islands, located 60 kilometers (38 miles) off the coast of mainland Guinea-Bissau. A good base from which to enter the park is the village of Eticoga on the west coast. The park's inhabitants include rare saltwater species of hippo and crocodile, and the area is particularly good for birds. This is also one of the largest green and Ridley turtle-nesting sites on the West African coast.

 The João Vieira and Poilao Marine National Park (JVMNP)

Established in August 2000, it’s located south-east of the Bijagòs archipelago in Guinea Bissau. It comprises four main islands (João Vieira, Cavalos,Meio e Poilão) and three islets (Baixo de Muzanty). It is a critical site for the reproduction of sea turtles and especially the green turtle (Chelonia mydas), for which it is the largest nesting site in the entire western Atlantic. The JVPNMP is one of the core zones of the Bijagos Archipelago Biosphere Reserve; it was declared a Gift to the Earth in 2001.

Arquipélago Dos Bijagós

With swaying palms, cooling breezes and powdery, white-sand beaches, the Bijagós islands exert a singular spell. Protected by swift tides and treacherous sandbanks, the island’s largely matriarchal people eluded Portuguese control until the 1930s. Now the entire archipelago, including its rich marine life, has been declared a biosphere reserve, while two island groups form national parks.

Bolama Bubaque

The Bolama Bubaque is a quite fascinating site with numerous ruins that hold a very significant yet distinctive past. The area is surrounded by an unspoilt naturally beautiful terrain which further adds glamour to the site. The area is ideal for camping.

Museum of African Artifacts

The Museum of African Artifacts is a treasure trove of traditional sculpture, pottery, weaving and basket-ware. Taking a tour around the well stocked Museum is an experience with enriching possibilities. The Museum is a world of treasure and a place where splendid, genuine African art works are on display.

 

Notable Events

 

  • Festival de Bubaque
  • Guinea-Bissau Carnival
  • Movimento Hip Hop Festival

 

 

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