People come to Buea to take a look at Mount Cameroon, or to climb it. There really isn’t that much else going on in Buea aside the mountain. However, you don’t need to do a hike all the way up the peak to enjoy some hiking in the area. There are lots of interesting places to visit, however you’ll need a guide for most of them. Aside from the mountain, Buea is actually a fairly busy city. The main strip of road is constantly buzzing with cars and activity. If you are here for a couple days, it’s kind of nice sitting at one of the street side maquis with a beer and a place of grub. It’s definitely worth a stop.
Time Needed: 1-3 Days
Backpacker’s Budget: $40-55 USD per day
Things to do and See in Buea
Obviously, the trek up Mount Cameroon, Western Africa’s highest peak, is the thing on most visitor’s mind. You’ll need to head to the trekking office if you’re planning on doing so. It’s necessary to take a guide up the mountain with you, and you’ll also get a porter. It’s not incredibly expensive to hike up the mountain, considering what you get, but it’s also not super cheap. I booked my trek the day before hiking without a problem.
There are some other things to do in town, but nothing that will really push you to come out here. If you’re into hiking, but don’t want to climb the mountain, head to the trekking office as they have some really great advice on easier day trips you can do from Buea.
Where to Eat in Buea
As is the case in most of Central Africa you can get food at almost all the hotels. I ate most of my meals at the Paramount Hotel where I stayed, and the food was good. However, you don’t really have a choice from the menu but rather whatever is being cooked. Just down the hill from Paramount, there are a couple really good maquis for lunch.
Up past the trekking office, the local market is a goldmine for everything from vegetables and fruit to bread and sardines. If you need to stock up on things before the hike, there is no better place in town. Also, just slightly up the hill from the trekking office there is a supermarket, but the prices are really high. It is good for a reward chocolate bar after the hike though.
Where to Stay in Buea
As I mentioned, I stayed at the Paramount Hotel which is right on the main strip heading up the hill. It’s good, and the rooms are massive. However, there is a real issue with water and I didn’t have running water the whole time I was there. I did, however, have consistent electricity. The interesting thing about Buea, too, is that you can pretty much get wifi everywhere. You buy it at a nearby internet cafe and then they have towers throughout the city. It’s slow, but it works when there is electricity running.
Another option for travellers is a place called the Parliament Hotel. It’s up right near the trekking office, and a little bit more expensive than Paramount, but better.
Getting out of Town
It’s fairly easy to get out of Buea. Since everything is on the main street, you can just flag down a shared taxi and have them dump you at the proper intersection to meet either a mini-bus or another shared taxi. You can get to Douala or Limbe direct from Buea. If you’re driving, there are two ways to get down to Limbe, although the best way is to head back to the N5 and then down to the N3 to Limbe.
Back to the Cameroon travel guides