Log In

Sierra Leone

  • 0
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Sierra Leone

Flag_of_Sierra_Leone.svg
Pin it

Population: 5,485,998 (est.)

Languages: English

Capital: Freetown

Interesting Facts:

  • The Sierra Leonean leone is the official currency of Sierra Leone.
  • Sierra Leone is ranked as one of the most religiously tolerant nations in the world.
  • Sierra Leone is an extremely poor nation with tremendous inequality in income distribution.
  • While it possesses substantial mineral, agricultural, and fishery resources, its physical and social infrastructure has yet to recover from the civil war, and serious social disorders continue to hamper economic development.
  • Climate is tropical; hot, humid; summer rainy season (May to December); winter dry season (December to April).
  • The modern state of Sierra Leone is one of Africa’s smallest republics and the 118th largest country of the world.
  • The Sierra Leone Police, established by the British in 1894, is one of the oldest police forces in West Africa.
  • The two largest and most dominant ethnic groups of Sierra Leone are the Mende and Temne.
  • Sierra Leone is one of the world’s youngest democracies, becoming a democratic nation in 2007.
  • The name of the country comes from the words “Serra Leao,” meaning “Lion Mountain Range” in Portuguese.
  • Sierra Leone is home to the third largest natural harbour in the world, the Queen Elizabeth II Quay.
  • The international dialing code for Sierra Leone is +232. The city code for Freetown is (0)22; other areas do not require a code.

Sierra Leone officially the Republic of Sierra Leone, is a country in West Africa that is bordered by Guinea to the northeast, Liberia to the southeast, and the Atlantic Ocean to the southwest. Sierra Leone has a tropical climate, with a diverse environment ranging from savannah to rainforests. The country covers a total area of 71,740 km2 (27,699 sq mi) and is divided into four geographical regions: the Northern Province, Eastern Province, Southern Province and the Western Area; which are subdivided into fourteen districts. The districts have their own directly elected local government known as district council, headed by a council chairman.

Freetown, located in the Western Area of the country, is the capital, largest city as well as its economic, commercial and political centre. Bo, located in the Southern Province of the country, is the country’s second largest city and the second major economic and commercial centre. The country is a constitutional republic and with an estimated population of 6 million (2011 United Nations estimate).

Sierra Leone has relied on mining, especially diamonds, for its economic base. The country is among the largest producers of titanium and bauxite, and a major producer of gold. The country has one of the world’s largest deposits of rutile. Sierra Leone is also home to the third largest natural harbour in the world, where shipping from all over the globe berth at Freetown’s famous Queen Elizabeth II Quay. Despite this natural wealth, 70% of its people live in poverty.

Sierra Leone is a predominantly Muslim country, though with an influential Christian minority. Sierra Leone is ranked as one of the most religiously tolerant nations in the world. People are often married across ethnic and religious boundaries. Muslims and Christians collaborate and interact with each other peacefully . Religious violence is very rare in the country.

The population of Sierra Leone comprises about sixteen ethnic groups, each with its own language and costume. The two largest and most influential are the Temne and the Mende. The Temne are predominantly found in the North of the country, while the Mende are predominantly found in the South-East of the country. Although English is the language of instruction in schools and the official language in government administration, the Krio language (derived from English and several indigenous African languages) is the primary language of communication among Sierra Leone’s different ethnic groups, and is spoken by 90% of the country’s population. The Krio Language unites all the different ethnic groups, especially in their trade and interaction with each other.

In 1462, the area that is now Sierra Leone was visited by the Portuguese explorer Pedro de Sintra, who named it Serra Leoa, meaning “Lioness Mountains”.Sierra Leone later became an important centre of the transatlantic trade in slaves until 11 March 1792 when Freetown was founded by the Sierra Leone Company as a home for former enslaved from (or freed by) the British Empire. In 1808, Freetown became a British Crown Colony, and in 1896, the interior of the country became a British Protectorate.

Between 1991 and 2002 the Sierra Leone Civil War devastated the country leaving more than 50,000 people dead, much of the country’s infrastructure destroyed, and over two million people displaced in neighbouring countries as refugees; mainly to Guinea, which was home to over 600,000 Sierra Leonean refugees.

Source: Wikipedia

News, tips, features, videos and facts on the world and travel. Need some travel help? Take a look around and if it's not there feel free to email or tweet us! @InformedXplorer

FEATURED

Photography

A trip through the Maasai Mara National Reserve

Male Lion I have been a big fan of wildlife photography for a long time. Photographer Martin Dunn does an amazing job capturing the animals in their natural setting, and offers some great tips if you're looking to do the same. With over 30 years of experience taking pictures of the…

0
Spain

Things to see in Costa Brava in 2014

Spain as a whole is a very popular destination for holiday goers. But as there are simply so many places to choose from, here's a suggestion: Costa Brava. It’s filled to the brim with beautiful scenic places, and it has its fair share of fantastically interesting attractions. Read below to…

1
Thailand

Thailand’s prostitute problem

Women hold up signs indicating their weight, age and any skills they have. Madams keep a watchful eye from the doorway of the club, while between ten and twenty young women, all identically dressed in tight tank-top, mini-skirt and high heels, chat by the side of the road, occasionally rising…

2
Palestine

Jerusalem through the eyes of a non-believer

Jerusalem is an amazing place. Upon entering the towering walls of the old city and stumbling upon arguably the most historic, culturally significant and important land on this earth - you are awe struck. This place shaped man/woman, no doubt. Photo by Benjamin Zand © Such incredible religious…

7

Features

A trip through the Maasai Mara National…

Male Lion I have been a big fan of wildlife photography for a long time. Photographer…

5 things no one tells you about…

1. YOU CAN BUY EVERYTHING OUT THERE - You see all that expensive equipment and gear…

One day in: Venice (INFOGRAPHIC)

Where to go if you have one day in Venice. See the best of the…

It's time to visit Palestine

So, I've just returned from a fascinating trip to Israel and Palestine - honestly one…

One day in: Ho Chi Minh City

Top class food to trendy nightclubs and beautiful scenery - Ho Chi Minh City has…

Exploring Tenerife's wild side

Tenerife is filled with an endless amount of things to see - from Europe’s biggest…

Travel tips

Gear and Globe Trotting: Safari Photography

Photographing wildlife has been the most challenging and heartbreaking exercise I’ve ever undertaken in all of my traveling. Truth be…

Top 5 Pet-Friendly Destinations in the US

BLOWING ROCK, NORTH CAROLINA Nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains, Moses Cone Manor and Memorial Park is paradise for horse lovers.…

Log In or Create an account