Four years after
the German Empire claimed the territory now known as Cameroon in
1884 during the scramble for Africa naming it as the Colony of Kamerun,
Yaounde was founded as a trading station to exploit the
resources of the new colony.
In 1919, after the first world war
and Germany's defeat during which the city had been occupied by
Belgium from 1915, Kemerun became a League of Nations Mandate
territory and was split into British Cameroon and French
Cameroon with Yaounde named as the French colonial capital in
It retained that
status until the second world war when Cameroon's largest city Douala became the capital during the war years, however the
capital was transferred back to Yaounde in 1946. It continued as
the capital of French Cameroon and then as the capital of the
newly merged Republic of Cameroon after independence.
located in south-central Cameroon, nestled between the Nyong and
Sanaga rivers on a hilly plateau. It has a population of
1,395,200 in the wider metropolitan area whilst 1,154,400 live
in the actual city itself. Although Douala is the largest city in
Cameroon and its commercial capital with its port handling
Cameroon's exports including oil, cocoa and coffee, Yaounde
remains its administrative centre and the seat of the country's
It also has some
industries including timber, tobacco, printing and the
production of clay and glass items. Given its good transport
links including two airports,
Yaounde also acts as a distribution hub for Cameroon's agricultural industry outputs
from rubber, to sugar cane and the staple coffee and cocoa. This
video shows a compilation of pictures showing various aspects
Yaounde and what its like living there. You can also explore
Yaounde using our interactive map of the city below.
Facts, figures and the history of the capital city of Yaounde in Cameroon together with pictures of Yaounde, the second largest city in Cameroon after the port city of Douala which is also the home of the country's only international airport.