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Garoua, also known as Garua or Garwa in Fula, is a port city and the capital of the North Region of Cameroon. It is located on the Benue River and is a vibrant hub for the textiles and cotton industries. As of 2020, the city had approximately 1,285,000 inhabitants, primarily from the Fulbe/Fulani ethnic group.

Historically, Garoua was founded in the early 19th century by the Fulani emir Modibbo Adama and grew into a significant river port during the steamship era.

Country Flag of Cameroon.svg Cameroon
Region North
Department Bénoué
249 m (817 ft)
 • Total 600,000
Climate Aw

Geographically, Garoua is situated in northern Cameroon, with its prominence as the gateway to Benoue National Park. The city encompasses various neighbourhoods, including Commercial Centre, Lopere, Quartier de Marouare, Poumpoumre, Roumde Adjia, and the northwestern suburb of Yelwa, near Garoua International Airport.

Garoua experiences a tropical savanna climate (Köppen Aw) characterized by a distinct wet and dry season, with consistently high temperatures throughout the year. The average temperature ranges from 26.0 °C (78.8 °F) in December and January, the coolest months, to 33.0 °C (91.4 °F) in April, the hottest month. The peak of heat occurs in March and April, just before the onset of the wet season. March has the highest average high temperature at 39.8 °C (103.6 °F), while April has the highest average low temperature at 26.4 °C (79.5 °F). August registers the lowest average high temperature at 30.7 °C (87.3 °F), while December sees the lowest average low temperature at 17.3 °C (63.1 °F).

Precipitation in Garoua amounts to 997.4 millimetres (39.27 in) annually, distributed over 88 days of rainfall. The city follows the typical pattern of tropical savanna climates, with a dry season from December to February. August is the wettest month, receiving an average of 247.9 millimetres (9.76 in) of rainfall. September has the highest number of precipitation days, with 24. Garoua enjoys an average of 2,927.1 hours of sunshine per year, evenly spread across the seasons, although sunshine hours are slightly reduced during the wet season.

Demographics & economy

As of 2005, Garoua had a population of 495,996, predominantly comprised of the Fulbe ethnic group. The city is also home to a Chadian Consulate due to a significant number of Chadian expatriates residing there.

Garoua plays a crucial role in Cameroon’s trade industry as the country’s fourth-largest port. It serves as a major trading centre for commodities such as petroleum, cement, hides, peanuts, and cotton, which are transported via ships along the Benue River, connecting Burutu in Nigeria. The city has a thriving cotton industry with several textile processing facilities and factories, including a major centre for the cotton company Sodecoton. Other notable industries in Garoua include leatherwork and fishing.


In terms of sports, the Roumdé Adjia Stadium was designated as one of the venues for the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations.


Garoua has various places of worship, primarily comprising Muslim mosques. Additionally, there are Christian churches and temples, including the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Garoua, Evangelical Church of Cameroon, Presbyterian Church in Cameroon, Cameroon Baptist Convention, and Full Gospel Mission Cameroon.


The city is served by Garoua International Airport, which is utilized by the United States military for unmanned aerial vehicle


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