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  • Côte d'Ivoire - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    Côte d'Ivoire (pronounced /ˌkoʊt diˈvwɑr/ in English, IPA: [kot diˈvwaʀ] in French), formerly Ivory Coast, officially the Republic of Côte d'Ivoire, is a country in West ...

  • Background Note: Cote d'Ivoire

    Area: 322,500 sq. km. (124,500 sq. mi.); slightly larger than New Mexico. Cities: Principal city --Abidjan (economic capital, de facto political capital). Capital --Yamoussoukro ...

  • Côte d'Ivoire

    Find out geography, people, history, and wildlife of Côte d'Ivoire. Formerly known as Ivory Coast.

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Côte d’Ivoire

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Côte d’Ivoire (French for “Ivory Coast”), republic in western Africa, bounded on the north by Mali and Burkina Faso (Upper Volta), on the east by Ghana, on the south by the Gulf of Guinea, and on the west by Liberia and Guinea. The country has an area of 322,462 sq km (124,503 sq mi). Yamoussoukro is the official capital, and Abidjan is the de facto capital and largest city. A former French colony, Côte d’Ivoire achieved independence in 1960.


Land and Resources

The coast of Côte d’Ivoire is fringed by a number of large and deep lagoons, most of which are inaccessible to shipping because of offshore shoals. Bordering the coast, a zone of dense tropical forests extends about 265 km (about 165 mi) inland in the east and west and about 100 km (about 60 mi) in the center. Beyond this, in the north and center, lies an extensive savanna (grassland with a few trees). The western part of the country is undulating, with mountain chains in the Odienné and Man regions. Several summits rise to more than 1,500 m (5,000 ft). The principal rivers are the Sassandra, Bandama, and Komoé, none of which is navigable for more than about 65 km (about 40 mi) because of rapids and low water during the dry season.



The southern portion of Côte d’Ivoire has a tropical climate, with hot and humid weather and heavy rains. Temperatures vary from 22°C (72°F) to 32°C (90°F), and the heaviest rains fall from April to July and in October and November. Away from the coast, in the savanna, temperature differences become more extreme, with night lows dropping in January to 12°C (54°F) and day highs in the summer rising above 40°C (104°F). Annual rainfall is 2,100 mm (83 in) in coastal Abidjan and 1,200 mm (48 in) in Bouaké, located on the nation’s central plain.


Plants and Animals

The central band of Côte d’Ivoire is covered by forest with more than 225 species of trees, among which are such valuable hardwood trees as obeche, mahogany, iroko, makore, and sipo. Animals of the country include the jackal, hyena, panther, elephant, chimpanzee, crocodile, and various lizards and venomous snakes.

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