Wouri River

The estuary of the Wouri River

The Wouri (also Vouri or Vuri) is a river in Cameroon. Cameroon has two major rivers, the Sanaga, the longest with about 525 km (325 miles) long[1] and the Wouri, the largest. The Wouri forms at the confluence of the rivers Nkam and Makombé, 32 km (20 mi) northeast of the city of Yabassi. It then flows about 160 km (99 mi) southeast to the Wouri estuary at Douala, the chief port and industrial city in the southwestern part of Cameroon on the Gulf of Guinea. The river is navigable about 64 km (40 mi) upriver from Douala.


The Portuguese navigator and explorer Fernão do Pó or Fernando Poo, is believed to be the first European to explore the estuary of the Wouri, around the year 1472. The explorers noted an abundance of the mud lobster Lepidophthalmus turneranus in the Wouri River and named it "Rio dos Camarões", Portuguese for "River of Prawns", and the phrase from which the name Cameroon derived.He also met the Cameroon mountain or The Fako mountain erupting and named it Chariot of the gods. . The phrase"Rio dos Camarões" later became Camarones when the Spanish arrived in the region. Then, during the German protectorate in the country which started in 1884, the country's name changed to Kamerun before the Treaty of Versailles placed the country under French and British authority in 1919 which led to the final name "Cameroon"[2].