Geography of Guinea


Terrain shapes and bedrock

A 50-80 km wide plain closest to the coast constitutes one of Guinea’s four topographic regions, Lower Guinea. A large number of river valleys that form deep coves and protruding rocky pads, especially in the north (eg Cape Verga), break off the long coastal zone with its numerous lagoons and sandy reefs. The bedrock consists of granite and gneiss; it is mostly covered by a reddish-type earthquake.

To the east of the coastal plain stands a highland, Fouta Djallon, in a series of staircases. It is a powerful sandstone massif that reaches over 1,500 meters above sea level in northern Guinea.

The highlands also consist of plateaus with cut valleys and protruding peaks of granite and rock. From here, source streams are also used for several major rivers such as Niger, Sénégal and Gambia.

East of Fouta Djallon takes the Upper Guinea, which has a general slope to the northeast and an altitude of 300 m above sea level. At most are some rounded hills of granite, gneiss and quartzite.

In the south-east is a cool, wooded area, Guinea’s highlands, which at the border with Liberia reaches the highest in the Nimba Mountains, 1,752 m above sea level.

In the most humid areas, apart from laterite, there are sandy brown soils in the northeast and alluvial soils in the river valleys.


According to COUNTRYAAH, Guinea is located in the tropical zone with high humidity. The rainy season falls in April – October. On the coast, the average rainfall is 4 300 mm per year, in Upper Guinea 2 600 mm. At the beginning of the dry season, the dry desert wind harms the wind from the southwestern Sahara. Closest to the coast is the annual average temperature of 27 °C, in Fouta Djallon 25 °C; in Upper Guinea, the temperature during the dry season reaches over 40 °C.

Plant-and animal life

The land is on the north-western border of the West African forest area, and the natural vegetation is partly rainforest (in the south-east) and partly tree water, so-called guinea ash, where the trees during the dry season fall their leaves. Large parts of the forests have been replaced by opener savannas with tall grasses or by farmland and plantations. In the savannah landscape, acacias and monkey bread trees are eye-catching elements. Along the rivers there is usually a forest border, called gallery forest. On the coast there are some mangrove forests with mainly red mangrove.

Wildlife is rich in some areas. Red baboon (Paʹpio paʹpio), house monkey, green markata, spotted hyena and several species of antelope are widespread. But there are also chimpanzees, bush pigs, African elephant, African buffalo, hippopotamus, dwarf hippopotamus, senegal manate (Tricheʹchus senegaleʹnsis) and leopard. Indigenous birds are marked brown, barnacle (Necrosyʹrtes moʹnachus), pigeons, kingfishers, bee- eaters, glossaries, bulbils, sunbirds and weavers. In addition, many northern European bird species winter in the country. All three crocodile species are found in Africa, but are now rare. Other reptiles include rock surface, green mamba and black and white lip cobra (Naʹja melanoleuca [-le u ʹka]).

Nature conservation

There is a national park, Badiar, and a couple of larger nature reserves, among them Mont Nimba in the Nimba Mountains on both sides of the border with the Ivory Coast, in which there is both rainforest and open highland savannah as well as a rich wildlife.