This tiny Central African nation, roughly the size of Maryland, is sub-Saharan Africa’s third-largest oil producer. Though this oil wealth has made it one of the most prosperous countries in the region, political upheaval and wealth inequality are problems that weigh on the country’s conscience.
That said, the country boasts a varied and spectacular terrain. Beautiful beaches and coastal plains turn to rolling hills in the interior. Its five islands are home to mountain peaks, volcanoes, and a variety of wildlife. Equatorial Guinea has no shortage of beaches, jungles, and natural sites worth seeing.
In recent years the infrastructure of Equatorial Guinea has vastly improved. Most of the country’s roads are now paved, and the number of airports and travel connections has risen. While the tourist industry is still in its infancy, independent travelers will find much to visit and explore.
The Top 10: What to Do in Equatorial Guinea
The small but striking capital city abounds in Spanish colonial architecture and pleasant open plazas. The bustling market and the Spanish Colonial Center are worth a visit.
2. Climbing Volcanoes:
The spectacular Pico Malabo volcano is an easy day trip from the city of Malabo. Arrange an expedition to take in its breathtaking views.
The area around the mainland city of Bata boasts several beautiful and undeveloped beaches. Those at Mbini, just 32 miles (51.5 kilometers) south of Bata, are particularly gorgeous.
4. Local Liquors:
Malamba, made from sugarcane, and osang, a type of African tea, are the national drinks. Locally brewed beer and palm wine are also abundant.
5. Market Shopping:
Markets can be found in most cities and towns. In addition to local produce, bush meat, and textiles, many markets feature local handicrafts.
6. Monte Alen National Park:
This park’s tropical forests are home to gorillas, elephants, chimpanzees, and many other creatures. Hire a local villager for a guided day trek through the park’s 870 miles (1,400 kilometers) of rain forest.
7. Bata Nightlife:
This mainland city may feel small by day, but its nightlife is impressive. Be prepared for a long night;nightclubs typically don’t get going until quite late and are still jumping in the wee hours.
8. Moca Valley:
Situated in the southern highlands of Bioko Island, this valley is home to the indigenous Buki people and offers plenty in the way of hiking and flora sightseeing.
Head to the island of Annobon to see three of the country’s most famous mountain peaks, Pico del Fuega, Pico Centro, and Pico Surtado. Pico Surtado, the southernmost peak, is an inactive volcano whose crater now contains an impressive lake.
10. Arena Blanca:
If you visit during the summer, Arena Blanca is a must-see. Its white-sand beaches are dazzling and enjoyable year-round. They literally come alive in the summertime with thousands of butterflies that nest there seasonally.
When to Go
The weather is tropical, with heavy rainfall for most of the year. Flash floods can make travel difficult in the rainy season. Between December and February, rainfall is gentler, and we suggest travel during those months.