Travel advices and warnings Central African Republic
Tourism in the Central African Republic has been negatively affected by its recent troubled history and fighting in neighbouring countries. Security in the country is unstable, particularly in its north and northwest. In 2007 and 2008 the United States issued a travel warning for the CAR warning of bandits, armed groups of rebels, and poachers particularly outside of the capital Bangui. The country's government cannot guarantee the safety of travellers in most of the country. In April 2007, a hunting party near Ndele town was attacked and a French hunter was killed and three others were injured.
The Central African Republic is a landlocked and remote country, and a lack of air access makes it an expensive destination. Locations in the country attractive to travellers include the Chutes De Boali, waterfalls of a height of 50 m (164 ft). Dzanga-Sangha National Park in the south west of the country has gorillas and elephants. The Baka people live in this area. Bayanga beside the Sangha River is the main village near to the national park. The village has some small guesthouses and a lodge. The best time to visit most of the country is from November to April.
Central Africans currently speak a wide variety of languages, including Baya (Gbaya), Banda, Ngbaka, Sara, Mbum, Kare, and Mandjia. French and Sango are the official languages. Sango is a lingua franca spoken by nearly nine-tenths of the population. It was originally the language of a people from the Ubangi River region, but Christian missionaries adopted, simplified, and disseminated it in the 1940s and ’50s to their followers throughout the country.
Though the C. A. R. gets a lot of rainfall (mostly May-October), it's not as oppressively hot and humid as many equatorial countries, thanks to its elevation. The dry season (and best time to visit) is December-April. We do not recommend visiting during the rainy season. Not only is the weather unpleasant and the risk of malaria high, but it can be extremely difficult to get around the country. When it rains, the roads are closed to prevent cars from digging up the surface. Hours -- sometimes an entire night -- may be spent camping out at the site of a rain barrier, waiting for the roads to dry.
CFA (Communauté Financière Africaine) Franc (XAF) = 100 centimes. Notes are in denominations of XAF10, 000, 5, 000, 2, 000, 1, 000 and 500. Coins are in denominations of XAF500, 100, 50, 25, 10, 5 and 1.
The Central African Republic is part of the French Monetary Area. Only currency issued by the Banque des Etats de l'Afrique Centrale (Bank of Central African States) is valid; currency issued by the Banque des Etats de l'Afrique de l'Ouest (Bank of West African States) is not. The CFA Franc is tied to the Euro.
Western food is only available in the capital, Bangui. Most of the top-class hotels have good restaurants. The standard of these restaurants is high, but they do tend to be expensive. Otherwise travellers must call at local villages and barter for provisions. Local food is basic. Many dishes contain gombo (okra), although other popular ingredients include rice, bananas and cassava.
Bars are numerous in Bangui with both table and counter service. Drinking and smoking are not encouraged in Muslim society; in Muslim areas, drinking is best done in private. Elsewhere, there are numerous beer halls offering beverages of a high standard.
• Muamba de Galinha (chicken with palm oil and okra).
• Chicken and cumin stew.
• Palm butter soup.
• Shrimps eaten with boiled yams or sweet potatoes.
• Spinach stew, which might also include tomatoes, peppers, chillies, onions and peanut butter.
The Central African Republic (CAR) (République centrafricaine,, or Centrafrique ; Sango Ködörösêse tî Bêafrîka), is a landlocked country in Central Africa. It borders Chad in the north, Sudan in the north east, South Sudan in the east, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the Republic of the Congo in the south, and Cameroon in the west. The CAR covers a land area of about 240, 000 square miles (623, 000 km²), and has an estimated population of about 4. 4 million as of 2008. Bangui is the capital city.
Most of the CAR consists of Sudano-Guinean savannas but it also includes a Sahelo-Sudanian zone in the north and an equatorial forest zone in the south. Two thirds of the country lies in the basins of the Ubangi River, which flows south into the Congo River, while the remaining third lies in the basin of the Chari River, which flows north into Lake Chad.
Since most of the territory is located in the Ubangi and Shari river basins, France called the colony it carved out in this region Ubangi-Chari, or Oubangui-Chari in French. It became a semi-autonomous territory of the French Community in 1958 and then an independent nation on 13 August 1960. For over three decades after independence, the CAR was ruled by presidents who either were not freely elected or took power by force. Local discontent with this system was eventually reinforced by international pressure, following the end of the Cold War.
The first multi-party democratic elections were held in 1993 with resources provided by the country's donors and help from the UN Office for Electoral Affairs, and brought Ange-Félix Patassé to power. He lost popular support during his presidency and was overthrown in 2003 by French-backed General François Bozizé, who went on to win a democratic election in May 2005. Inability to pay workers in the public sector led to strikes in 2007, forcing the resignation of the government in early 2008. A new Prime Minister, Faustin-Archange Touadéra, was named on 22 January 2008.
The Central African Republic is one of the poorest countries in the world and among the ten poorest countries in Africa. The Human Development Index for the Central African Republic is 0. 369, which gives the country a rank of 179 out of 182 countries with data. List of countries by Human Development Index
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