Guinea is a country in West Africa. It was formerly known as French Guinea, or Guine’e franc,aise. It covers 245,857 sq km (94,926 sq mi) and has a population of slightly over 10 million people (2011 estimate). Guinea is bordered by Guinea-Bissau and Senegal to the northwest, Mali to the north, Co^te d’Ivoire to the east, and Liberia and Sierra Leone to the south. Guinea has a coastline facing the Atlantic Ocean to the east. The country forms an eastward curve around the northern border of Sierra Leone.

Guinea is on the Coordinated Universal Time (UTC+0). Traffic here is driven on the right. The official language of the country is French, although vernacular languages such as Pular, Mandinka and Susu are also common. The phone IDD code is +224.

Despite Guinea being a mineral rich country, due to poor management, it is today one of the poorest in the world, with most of its people living as farmers. The 2009 nominal GDP for Guinea stood at $4.394 billion, equivalent to a per capita nominal GDP of just $414. Its per capita nominal GDP at purchasing power parity is only $991.

Guinea was a colony of France from the 1890’s until its independence on 2 October, 1958. Although a round of presidential election took place on 27 June, 2010, it is still too early to tell whether it heralds a change for the better for Guinea.

Planning your visit to Guinea

All visitors to Guinea must have a visa in hand when they arrive. This has to be made at a Guinea embassy outside the country. There are flights by Air France from Paris to Conakry.

Major Cities in Guinea

1. Conakry – capital
2. Beyla
3. Boke’
4. Dalaba
5. Fore’cariah
6. Kankan
7. Kindia
8. Labe’

Places of Interest in Guinea

1. Fouta Djalon
2. Loos Islands
3. National Park of the Niokolo Badiar
4. National Park of the Upper Niger

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