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Monrovia, Liberia

Monrovia - Facts and Information about Liberia's Capital City

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Monrovia, Liberia's capital city, West Africa

Downtown Monrovia, Liberia's capital city, West Africa

© Chris Hondros/Getty Images

Basic Facts about Monrovia

Monrovia is the capital city of Liberia in West Africa, it's located on the Atlantic Coast. Just over 1 million people live in Monrovia making it Liberia's most populated city. Monrovia was founded in 1822, named after US President James Monroe, who was in favor of re-settling freed African-American slaves. As the city grew during the next century it was divided into two sections, one for the returning African-Americans and the other for the existing local population. The city continued to grow as more people moved into Monrovia from the countryside. Things were looking up in the late 1970's as Monrovia's public housing and education system saw significant improvements. Unfortunately this came to a dead halt in 1980, when Samuel Doe led a military coup and Liberia was caught in two consecutive civil wars, infamous for their destructive violence.

Today, Monrovia is at peace and Africa's first female president is in charge. Monrovia is a working port, but it's sprawling neighborhoods are generally poor with intermittent electricity. Despite its past, Monrovia has a friendly reputation thanks to its warmhearted residents.

The most common languages you'll hear in Monrovia are English, Bassa and Kru.

Travel to Monrovia

You can fly to Monrovia's International Airport via Belgium on Brussles Airlines, or via London on Astraeus Airlines. Regional airlines include Eylesian Airlines and Kenya Airways. Delta may operate flights in June 2010 from NY.

What to See

  • Liberian National Museum - looted during the war, but some interesting items remain.
  • Providence island - where the freed American slaves first arrived.
  • Waterside Market - bustling with activity and goods for sale
  • Beaches - Kendeja, Silver Beach, Ellen's Beach.

Where to Stay in Monrovia
Mamba Point Hotel; Moko's Bed and Breakfast; Royal Hotel; Kendeja Resort Villas (just out of town, where the old cultural center used to stand). More hotels ....

Restaurants and Clubs
Sundowners are popular at Mamba Point Hotel, Lebanese cuisine can be tried at Beirut and the seafood is fresh and delicious at The Anchor. Liberian local dishes can be found throughout the city of course, Auntie Nana near the Cathedral, is a good lunch bet as is La Pointe Restaurant. Good night spots include La Noche Bar and Deja Vu.

Getting Around
Taxis are the best way to get around town.

Sources and More Info

Lonely Planet Guide - Monrovia
Wikipedia - Monrovia
Liberia: Return to my personal paradise
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