Kumbo, Cameroon

Reading Time: 5 minutes

Kumbo, Cameroon

Region: Northwest Region

Geographic Coordinates: 6.200000, 10.660000
Temperature Range: 15.0°C to 30.0°C (59°F to 86°F)
Climate: Uncertain.
Population: 125486
Language: English

Kumbo is a city located in the North West region of Cameroon. It is the second-largest city in the region, After Bamenda, And has a population of over 100, 000 people. The city is situated on a plateau at an altitude of about 1, 500 meters above sea level and enjoys cool temperatures throughout the year. Kumbo is known for its rich cultural heritage and traditions. The city is home to several ethnic groups, Including the Nso people who are known for their unique architecture and customs.

The Nso palace in Kumbo is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Cameroon and showcases the rich history and culture of this community. The economy of Kumbo relies heavily on agriculture with crops such as coffee, Tea, Maize, Beans, Cassava being grown extensively. Livestock farming also plays a significant role in sustaining livelihoods with cattle rearing being common among farmers here. Kumbo’s location also makes it an ideal place for trade between neighboring towns like Bamenda.

One can find several traditional markets selling fresh produce such as fruits vegetables grains livestock etc., Which makes it an important hub for local commerce. The market days are usually held on Mondays and Thursdays where vendors from nearby villages come to sell their goods. In terms of education, Kumbo boasts some top-notch schools including Sacred Heart College which has produced some notable alumni over time. The town also hosts two universities: Catholic University Institute (CUIB) which offers undergraduate programs across various disciplines; Saint Monica University (SMU) which offers postgraduate courses in Business Administration & Management among others.

Tourism industry here has been growing rapidly over recent years due to its scenic beauty with natural attractions like Lake Nyos being one major highlight. The lake was formed by volcanic activity back in 1986 when a deadly gas explosion occurred killing thousands around it. However, It now serves as one breathtaking site attracting tourists from all over Africa especially during peak seasons like Christmas and Easter. Overall, Kumbo is a vibrant city with a rich cultural heritage and natural beauty that makes it an ideal destination for tourists seeking to explore the heart of Cameroon.

Important Landmarks

  1. Kumbo Cathedral: This cathedral is an impressive architectural structure that draws visitors from around the globe.
  2. Tobin Falls: A picturesque waterfall situated just outside of Kumbo that is a favorite spot for hiking and picnicking.
  3. Lake Nyos: Known for its striking blue waters, this crater lake is located near Kumbo.
  4. Nso Palace: The traditional home of the Nso people, one of Cameroon’s major ethnic groups.
  5. Mount Oku: Standing over 3,000 meters tall, this mountain peak provides stunning views of the surrounding landscape.
  6. Mbi Crater Lake: Another beautiful crater lake worth visiting while in Kumbo.
  7. Bafut Palace: Located just outside of Kumbo and serves as a cultural center for the Bafut people who reside in the area.
  8. Ako Mountain Forest Reserve: Home to numerous flora and fauna species including primates, birds, butterflies among others.

Primary Industries

  1. Agriculture
    • Coffee
    • Cocoa
    • Maize
    • Beans
  2. Livestock farming
    • Cattle rearing
  3. Trade
    • Clothing
    • Electronics
    • Food items
  4. Small-scale manufacturing
    • Soap production
    • Furniture production
  5. Education
    • Primary schools
    • Secondary schools
    • Tertiary institutions
  6. Healthcare services
    • Hospitals
    • Clinics
  7. Transportation services
    • Taxis
    • Motorcycles for hire

Noteable History

  1. In 1982, the Kumbo Diocese was established, making Kumbo a significant hub for Catholicism in Cameroon.
  2. The Bui War was a conflict between separatist groups seeking independence for the Anglophone regions of Cameroon and the government of Cameroon. Many individuals from Kumbo were involved in this war.
  3. Fon Chafah XI, a respected traditional ruler in Kumbo, played an essential role in promoting development and education within the region before his passing.
  4. St. Augustine University of Cameroon (SAUC), located in Kumbo, is one of the country’s top universities.
  5. Kumbo has been vital as an agricultural and trading center with its renowned weekly market that attracts traders from across the region.
  6. Notable figures hailing from Kumbo include Dr Nkembi Lobe Felix (medical doctor), Prof Ayuk Takor (academician), Mr Fomunyoh Christopher (civil rights activist), among others.

Museums and Things To See

  1. Banso Baptist Hospital Museum: This museum showcases the history of the hospital and its role in providing healthcare services to the people of Kumbo.
  2. Nso Palace: The palace is a traditional architectural masterpiece and a symbol of cultural heritage in Kumbo.
  3. Kumbo Cathedral: The cathedral is one of the largest churches in Cameroon and features beautiful stained glass windows and intricate carvings.
  4. Bamenda Cultural Center: This center provides a platform for showcasing traditional dances, music, art, and crafts from various tribes in Cameroon.
  5. Lake Nyos Disaster Memorial Site: This memorial site commemorates the tragic event that occurred on August 21st, 1986 when carbon dioxide gas erupted from Lake Nyos killing over 1700 people.
  6. Mbiame Market: A bustling market where visitors can buy local produce such as fresh fruits and vegetables as well as handmade crafts.
  7. Kimbo Waterfalls: These waterfalls are located about 20km from Kumbo town center and offer scenic views for nature lovers.

Note that due to COVID-19 restrictions some places may be closed or have limited access hours so it’s best to check beforehand with local authorities before visiting any place mentioned above.

Cultural Events

  1. The Nso Palace Cultural Festival is an annual event held in Kumbo that celebrates the cultural heritage of the Nso people.
  2. The Bamenda Cultural Festival is a gathering of different ethnic groups in Bamenda, including the Nso people, to showcase their traditional dances, music, and cuisine.
  3. Kumbo Market Day takes place every Thursday in Kumbo and is a significant cultural event where traders from various regions come to sell their goods.
  4. The Mbororo Cultural Festival celebrates the traditions and way of life of the nomadic Mbororo tribe who travel throughout Cameroon and other parts of West Africa.
  5. Although not held specifically in Kumbo, the Ngondo Festival is an important cultural event for tribes living near waterways such as rivers or lakes throughout Cameroon.
  6. The Bafut Palace Dance is a traditional dance performed by members of the Bafut tribe during significant occasions like weddings or funerals.
  7. Fons Day Celebration honors traditional rulers known as Fons who play a crucial role in Cameroonian culture and society.
  8. The Kom Mountain Race attracts runners from all over Cameroon who compete to climb up and down Mount Oku as quickly as possible – it’s definitely not for those with weak hearts!


  • Ndole – a traditional Cameroonian dish made with bitterleaf, peanuts, and meat or fish.
  • Achu soup – a spicy soup made with cocoyam and served with vegetables and meat.
  • Njama njama – a leafy green vegetable similar to spinach that is often served as a side dish.
  • Roasted corn – a popular street food in Kumbo that is often sold by vendors on the side of the road.
  • The Blue Pearl Restaurant – known for its delicious seafood dishes and stunning views of the nearby lake.
  • Chez Alfred Restaurant – offers traditional Cameroonian dishes like ndole, achu soup, and grilled fish.
  • Mama’s Kitchen – serves up tasty local cuisine like njama njama stew and fried plantains.
  • The Garden Cafe & Bar – offers fresh salads, sandwiches, burgers, smoothies, and other international dishes alongside local favorites like grilled chicken skewers with peanut sauce.

  • Parks and Recreation

    1. Kumbo Main Park is a public park that boasts walking trails, picnic areas, and playgrounds.
    2. Kumbo Sports Stadium is a sports complex that features a soccer field, basketball court, and running track.
    3. Lake Oku is a natural lake located near Kumbo that provides fishing and boating activities for visitors to enjoy.
    4. Bafut Palace is an historic site and cultural center where guided tours of the palace grounds are available.
    5. Mount Oku is a highly sought-after hiking destination known for its breathtaking scenic views of the surrounding area.
    6. Nso Cultural Museum serves as a museum dedicated to preserving the rich culture and history of the Nso people in Cameroon.
    7. Tadu Waterfall is another nearby attraction situated near Kumbo offering opportunities for swimming and hiking enthusiasts alike to enjoy themselves.


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