Yaoundé

Yaoundé is the capital of Cameroon and, with a population of approximately 2.

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Yaoundé ( /ˌjɑːuːnˈdeɪ/ or /jaːˈʊndeɪ/, French pronunciation: ​[ja.un.de]) is the capital of Cameroon and, with a population of approximately 2.5 million, the second largest city in the country after the port city Douala. It lies in the center of the nation at an elevation of about 750 metres (2,500 ft) above sea level.

History

Yaoundé was founded in 1888 by German traders as a base for the ivory trade and as an agricultural research station. It was occupied by Belgian troops during World War I. After Germany's defeat, France became the colonial power in eastern Cameroon. Yaoundé consequently became the capital of French Cameroon, and continued as the capital of the Republic of Cameroon at independence.

Economy

Major industries in Yaoundé include tobacco, dairy products, beer, clay, glass goods, and lumber. It is also a regional distribution center for coffee, cocoa, copra, sugar cane, and rubber.

Places of interest



Yaoundé cathedral

The city centre houses government offices, some hotels, and the central market. The Bastos neighbourhood, with most homes owned by Cameroonians, is home to foreign embassies and the expatriate European community (drawn mainly from the diplomatic corps). The presidential palace and compound is in the Etoudi neighborhood.

Also found in Yaoundé are:

  • the Cathédrale Notre Dame des Victoires, seat of the Archdiocese of Yaoundé[2]
  • the Basilique Marie-Reine-des-Apôtres, built on the site of the first missionary church in Cameroon[3]
  • the Cameroon Art Museum (located in a former Benedictine monastery)
  • the Cameroon National Museum (located in the former presidential palace)
  • the Afhemi Museum
  • the Palais du Sport

There is a small zoo in the Mvog-Betsi neighbourhood. Yaoundé has a small assortment of nightclubs and restaurants.



A view of Yaoundé

Climate

Yaoundé features a tropical wet and dry climate with constant temperatures throughout the year. However, primarily due to the altitude, temperatures are not quite as hot as one would expect for a city located near the equator. Yaoundé features a lengthy wet season, covering a ten month span between February and November. However, there is a noticeable decrease in precipitation within the wet season, seen during the months of July and August, almost giving the city the appearance of having two separate rainy seasons. It’s primarily due to the relative lull in precipitation during these two months that Yaoundé features a tropical wet and dry climate, as opposed to a tropical monsoon climate.

Climate data for Yaoundé
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 33
(91)
33
(91)
33
(91)
36
(97)
34
(93)
32
(90)
31
(88)
34
(93)
31
(88)
33
(91)
32
(90)
32
(90)
36
(97)
Average high °C (°F) 29
(84)
29
(84)
29
(84)
29
(84)
28
(82)
27
(81)
27
(81)
27
(81)
27
(81)
27
(81)
28
(82)
28
(82)
28
(82)
Average low °C (°F) 19
(66)
19
(66)
19
(66)
19
(66)
19
(66)
19
(66)
19
(66)
18
(64)
19
(66)
18
(64)
19
(66)
19
(66)
19
(66)
Record low °C (°F) 14
(57)
15
(59)
16
(61)
15
(59)
16
(61)
15
(59)
16
(61)
16
(61)
15
(59)
15
(59)
17
(63)
16
(61)
14
(57)
Precipitation mm (inches) 23
(0.91)
66
(2.6)
147
(5.79)
170
(6.69)
196
(7.72)
152
(5.98)
74
(2.91)
79
(3.11)
213
(8.39)
295
(11.61)
117
(4.61)
23
(0.91)
1,555
(61.22)
Source: BBC Weather [4]

Transportation

Yaoundé Nsimalen International Airport is a major civilian hub, while nearby Yaoundé Airport is used by the military. Railway lines run west to the port city of Douala and north to N'Gaoundéré. Many bus companies operate from the city; particularly in the Nsam and Mvan neighborhoods. Frequent bus runs occur along the road between Yaoundé and Douala, which has witnessed several fatal accidents. Travel time by road between Douala and Yaounde is approximately 3 hours. Traffic in the city can be heavy during weekdays, but is very light during the weekends.Yaounde has made a great progress in infrastructure especially road construction.

Markets



Mfoundi market

There are numerous markets in the city, ranging from small street-side markets to the large Mfoundi and Mokolo market. There are also some supermarkets (e.g. the locally owned 'Rayco' and 'Mahima' and the Franch-owned Casino) situated in the city centre.

Sports

The national football (soccer) team plays frequent matches in the Ahmadou Ahidjo (or Omnisport) stadium. Also, the Grand Prix Chantal Biya, which is a man's road bicycle racing event on the UCI Africa Tour starts and finishes in Yaoundé. The Milwaukee Bucks starting small forward, Luc Richard Mbah a Moute, was born in Yaoundé in September 1986 as well as Toronto FC midfielder Nane Joseph and former striker Ali Gerba.

Education



The city from Mount Fébé

For schools, Cameroon is a bilingual country. In the Capital many of the schools teach in French as a first language and English as a second language, but sometimes they will neglect the English language. There are two American schools in Cameroon, the American School of Yaounde (ASOY) and Rain Forest International School (RFIS). Yaoundé is the site of several universities: the University of Yaoundé I, the University of Yaoundé II (on a campus outside of town), the Protestant University of Central Africa (UPAC) and the Catholic University of Central Africa (UCAC). Several of the nation's professional schools are also located in Yaounde (Ecole Normal Superieur for teachers, Ecole Militaire InterArmes du Cameroun) as well as various schools for engineers, nurses and diplomats).

The largest hospital is the Central Hospital of Yaoundé (Hôpital Central de Yaounde) with 650 beds.[5] Yaoundé General Hospital (Hôpital Général de Yaoundé - HGY) had 302 beds when it was built in 1985.[6] Other hospitals are the Yaoundé Gynaecology, Obstetrics and Pediatrics Hospital (Hôpital Gynéco Obstetrique et Pédiatrique de Yaoundé - HGOPY) and the University Hospital Center of Yaoundé (Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Yaoundé - CHU).