Cameroon Population, People, Languages and Religions

By | January 21, 2022

Cameroon Country Overview

Where is Cameroon located? The African state of Cameroon is located in Central Africa. Despite the large geographic distance, the same time difference to coordinated world time (UTC +1) applies in Cameroon and Germany. This is because the time zone map divides countries into world time zones along vertical lines of longitude. Which is in Cameroon is called “West Africa Time” (WAT). There is no time difference to summer time in Cameroon in summer.

Cameroon National Flag

Population Distribution

As of 2023, the latest population of Cameroon is 27,744,989, based on our calculation of the current data from UN (United Nations).

Total population 27,744,989
Population growth rate 2.78%
Birth rate 35.40 births per 1,000 people
Life expectancy
Overall 55.02 years
Men 54.10 years
Women 55.95 years
Age structure
0-14 years 42.15%
15-64 years 54.62%
65 years and above 3.23%
Median age 18.40 years
Gender ratio (Male to Female) 1.01
Population density 58.36 residents per km²
Urbanization 51.40%
Over 200 ethnic groups: approx. 40% Bantu mainly in the S and E (including Bafia, Bakoko, Bakweri, Balong, Banen, Basaa, Batanga, Bulu, Duala, Eton, Ewondo, Maka, Mbo, Yambasa), 20% Semibantu and Adamawa in the west (including Bafut, Bali, Bamileke, Bamun, Banso, Kom, Tikar, Widikum), Sudan-speaking ethnic groups, Fulbe, Hausa and so-called pygmies in the north and center
Indigenous religions 40%, Christians 40%, Muslims 20%
Human Development Index (HDI) 0.563
HDI ranking 150th out of 194

People in Cameroon

Around 25 million people live in Cameroon. A little more than half live in a city (56 percent), the rest live in rural areas. The biggest cities are Douala and Yaoundé. The north-western highlands are particularly densely populated.

The population is growing rapidly, because every woman has an average of 4.6 children. Children and young people therefore make up a large part of the population. 42 percent are under 15 years old. However, only three percent are older than 65 years. Almost three (2.7) out of 100 babies die in childbirth, and about five (5.1) out of 100 children do not live to be a year old.

Which ethnic groups live in Cameroon?

The Cameroonians belong to very many peoples. How many is not known exactly, but estimates are based on more than 230 peoples. There are just as many languages.

In the north of the country there are some peoples whose religion is Islam. The Fulbe (also called Fulani) belong to them as one of the largest groups. They make up around ten percent of the population. Other Islamic peoples are the Kanuri and the Musgum. Other peoples in the north have opposed Islam. They include the Massa and Mundang. Peoples like the Gbaya cannot be classified according to their religion, because some are Muslims and others, for example, Christians. Some of these peoples speak Chad languages.

The western highlands are particularly densely populated. Peoples who speak grassland languages ​​live here. They include the Bamileke and the Bamum. Until the 19th century there were a few smaller kingdoms here, including the Kingdom of Bamum. The grassland Cameroonians make up around 38 percent of the population.

Peoples like the Bassa, the Kpe, the Batanga and the Douala live on the coast. These peoples speak Bantu languages. A large number of peoples also live in the rainforest of the south. Ewondo, Basaa, Ngumba, Eton, Bulu, Makaa, Njem, Ndzimu, Baka and Fang are just a few of them.

Languages in Cameroon

So many languages ​​are spoken in Cameroon. The official languages ​​are not the languages ​​of the peoples living here, but French and English. After the First World War, the land was given to France and Great Britain by the League of Nations. France received the larger area with eight regions, Great Britain two regions. Even after independence in 1960, the prevailing languages ​​remained the official language.


In the English-speaking part, the north-west and south-west regions, Kamtok is often spoken. This is a creole language based on English. It is the lingua franca that different peoples use to communicate with one another.

Since the majority of the population lives in this part of the country, around half of all residents speak Kamtok as a second language. Kamtok is also spreading in the neighboring parts of the country, for example in the capital Yaoundé. However, there is also a French Creole language called Camfranglais.


In the north of the country, the Fulfulde takes on this function as the lingua franca. It is the language of the Fulani (Fulani) who make up a large part of the population here.


In the rest of the country, i.e. in the center, south and east, it is the Ewondo language that many people use to communicate. Ewondo is one of the Bantu languages.

Religions in Cameroon

In Cameroon, 70 percent of the population are Christian. They are divided into 38 percent Catholics and 26 percent Protestants as well as other Christian denominations.

20 percent of the population are Muslims. They live mainly in the north of the country.

Only six percent still follow traditional African religions, especially residents of the southeastern region. However, there are also many Christians who still believe in spirits and magic.