Learn more about Wouri River
The Wouri (also Vouri or Vuri) is a river in Cameroon. The river is formed at the confluence of the rivers Ykam and Makombé, 32 km (20 miles) northeast of the city of Yabassi. The Wouri then flows about 160 km (100 miles) southeast to its 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 miles) upriver from Douala.
The Portuguese navigator and explorer Fernão do Pó or Fernando Póo, is believed to be the first European to explore the estuary of the Wouri, around the year 1472. The explorers noted an abundance of prawns and crayfish in the Wouri River and named it Rio dos Camarões, Portuguese for River of Prawns, and the phrase from which Cameroon is derived.
In the 1950s, during the colonial period, the French built a bridge across the river, which connects Douala with the city of Bonabéri across the river. The bridge is now of great economic importance to western Cameroon, carrying auto, truck, and train traffic. Since 2004 the bridge has been undergoing a major rehabilitiation.