Equatorial Guinea

Learn about the West African country of Equatorial Guinea with the kids. It's a small country of coastal plains, rolling hills, tropical forests and mangrove swamps. Equatorial Guinea is also home to five volcanic islands off the coast, and unique as Africa’s only Spanish-speaking country. Learn a few interesting facts and then explore our printable activities below.

View of Mount Cameroon from Equatorial Guinea

A Little Geography…

  • Equatorial Guinea is made up of the mainland (Río Muni) as well as five volcanic islands. The mainland is bordered by Gabon and Cameroon, and separated from the islands by the Gulf of Guinea.
  • The country’s capital – Malabo – is on the largest island, Bioko. The other islands are Corisco, Great Elobey, Little Elobey and Annobón.
  • Bioko Island is made up of three volcanoes. The highest point is Pico Basilé at 3,011 metres. The city of Malabo sits in a natural crater-shaped harbour at the base of the mountain.
  • The country has a population of about 1.2 million people living in an area of around 28,000 square kilometres (although almost half of the population live in cities). The official languages are Spanish and French, but native languages are also spoken.
  • Equatorial Guinea is rich in natural resources such as petroleum, natural gas, timber, gold, diamonds and clay. Oil was discovered off the coast in the 1990s, bringing new wealth, but the country remains one of the world’s poorest nations. Farming, fishing and logging are also important industries, with bananas, cocoa and coffee being key agricultural exports.

A Little History…

  • The area around Equatorial Guinea was originally home to the Pygmy and Ndowe tribes. Portuguese explorers found the island of Bioko in 1494, which they called Fernando Pó.
  • Nearly 300 years later, Spain took over the islands and used them as an important stopping point for slave traders. Spain later combined the islands and the mainland into the colony of ‘Spanish Guinea’.
  • Although the country gained independence in 1968, it has since been plagued by political instability and violence. Many people have fled the country in search of safety.
  • In 1979, Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo seized power in a military coup. Although known as the President, many regard his rule as a dictatorship. He is Africa’s longest serving leader.

And Some Interesting Facts…

  • The country’s flag has three horizontal stripes (of green, white and red) and a blue triangle. The green represents the country’s farmland; the white symbolizes peace; the red stands for the fight for independence; and the blue represents the sea between the islands and the mainland. A silk cotton tree (the country’s national symbol) is shown with six stars above (for the country’s mainland and five islands).
  • Equatorial Guinea is known for its tradition of sculpture and mask-making. Most masks show human features, but others are based on the country’s wildlife, such as crocodiles, lizards, gorillas, chimpanzees, leopards and elephants.
  • Pico Basilé last erupted in 1923, although its lower slopes are now covered in tropical forest. Most of the beaches on Bioko Island have black sand from the volcanic rocks and minerals.

The Equatorial Guinea Flag

Equatorial Guinea flag

The blue triangle on the Equatorial Guinea Flag represents the sea, the green symbolises the country's farmland, and red stands for the country's independence. The flag also features a silk cotton tree on a shield and six gold stars to represent the six parts of the country. The flag was officially adopted on October 12, 1968. 


Our Equatorial Guinea Resources

Equatorial Guinea Flag Printable

Equatorial Guinea Flag Printable

Here is our printable of the lovely flag of Equatorial Guinea, featuring the National Coat of arms of Equatorial Guinea in the white band.

Equatorial Guinea on map of Africa

Equatorial Guinea on map of Africa

Use this map to discover Equatorial Guinea's neighbours, and to help children remember the "shape" of the country and its location.

 

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