Cameroon and Gabon are little developed and barely known as tourist destinations, yet together they have it all – from lush rainforests and idyllic beaches to harsh desert savannah and every imaginable landscape in between. It is not only the scenery which is extraordinary. With seafarers, hill tribes and pygmies, its residents are a diverse and intriguing cultural mixture from across the continent. It is little wonder this area has been labeled ‘Africa in miniature’.

One of the first European’s to visit Cameroon was Portuguese Fernando Po back in1472. Sailing up the Wouri River he dubbed it ‘rio dos camaroes’ (river of prawns) because of the amount of giant prawns it contained. In time the word Camaroes came to refer to the whole country, not just the river, and the modern name of Cameroon was born. Cameroon boasts Mount Cameroon, the highest mountain in West Africa, which offers a challenging ascent. For a less grueling trek, visit Waza National Park for great savannah game-viewing.


The currency in Gabon and Cameroon is the CFA Franc which is fixed to the euro.For up to date currency information, check the Currency Converter.

Although you would probably expect Cameroon to be a budget destination, it is actually fairly expensive for independent travelers. If you want to live well you can expect to pay $150 to $200 a day or more. By sticking to street vendors dishes, drinking bottled water (soft drinks and alcoholic beverages are expensive) and staying in basic rooms it is possible to get by on $25 to $50 per day. This is the same in Gabon where comfortable travel is mainly limited to Libreville with its vastly overpriced hotels.

It is not customary for people to tip but they do expect presents from wealthy visitors – and being foreign you will be deemed wealthy. Therefore expect to pay 10% to 15% in restaurants in the main cities.

When it comes to changing money, It’s best to take euros with you. You can change euros in banks and in some hotels, however to get the best rate you’ve got to go to the echangistes(money changers). Not quite illegal but not completely official either, this is where you can make the most of your cash. Don’t go on your own but ask the hotel you’re staying in to call them in or your trustworthy driver if you have one. Don’t be foolish by asking any stranger in the street where you can change money as you’ll become a prime target.

Make sure you hang to your small change as it’s very difficult to get in Cameroon. It’s indispensable to buy fruits, nuts, little things from the market or on stalls by the side of the road.

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