Countries in Western Africa

How Many Nations in Western Africa

Located in west part of Africa, Western Africa is composed of 16 countries. Here is an alphabetical list of all countries in West Africa: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Côte d’Ivoire, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, and Togo. Among them, two of which belong to the PALOP (Cape Verde and Guinea-Bissau):

1. Benin

Benin is a West African state that was formerly a French colony and hence French is the official language of the country. More than 10 million people live in the country and the country’s state is a republic.

Benin National Flag
  • Capital: Porto Novo
  • Area: 112,620 km2
  • Language: French
  • Currency: CFA Franc

2. Burkina Faso

Burkina Faso is a state in West Africa bordering Benin, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Mali, Niger and Togo. The country consists mostly of savannah and more than 15 million people live in Burkina Faso.

Burkina Faso National Flag
  • Capital: Ouagadougou
  • Area: 274,220 km2
  • Language: French
  • Currency: CFA Franc

3. Cape Verde

Cape Verde, formally the Republic of Cape Verde, is a state encompassing an archipelago in the Atlantic Ocean, about 500 kilometers west of Cape Verde on the African mainland.

Cape Verde National Flag
  • Capital: Praia
  • Area: 4,030 km 2
  • Language: Portuguese
  • Currency: Cape Verdean Shield

4. Ivory Coast

Côte d’Ivoire is a republic in West Africa on the Atlantic Ocean bordering Burkina Faso, Ghana, Guinea, Liberia and Mali. The country is a former French colony and the country is a successful football nation.

Cote dIvoire National Flag
  • Capital: Yamoussoukro
  • Area: 322,460 km 2
  • Language: French
  • Currency: CFA Franc

5. The Gambia

The Gambia, formally the Republic of the Gambia, is a state in West Africa on the Atlantic, bordering Senegal, which besides the coastline surrounds the country. The Gambia is the smallest state on the surface on the African continent.

Gambia National Flag
  • Capital: Banjul
  • Area: 11,300 km 2
  • Language: English
  • Currency: Dalasi

6. Ghana

Ghana, formally the Republic of Ghana, is a republic in West Africa. The country borders Côte d’Ivoire to the west, Burkina Faso to the north, Togo to the east and the Gulf of Guinea to the south.

Ghana National Flag
  • Capital: Accra
  • Area: 238,540 km 2
  • Language: English
  • Currency: Cedi

7. Guinea

Guinea, formally the Republic of Guinea, is a state in West Africa. Guinea is located on the Atlantic coast between Guinea-Bissau and Sierra Leone, and borders Senegal and Mali to the north, Côte d’Ivoire to the east and Liberia to the south.

Guinea National Flag
  • Capital: Conakry
  • Area: 245,860 km 2
  • Language: French
  • Currency: Guinean Franc

8. Guinea-Bissau

Guinea-Bissau, formally the Republic of Guinea-Bissau, is a state in West Africa with a coast to the Atlantic. The country, the former Portuguese colony of Portuguese Guinea, borders Senegal to the north, Guinea to the south and east.

Guinea-Bissau National Flag
  • Capital: Bissau
  • Area: 36,130 km 2
  • Language: Portuguese
  • Currency: CFA Franc

9. Liberia

Liberia, formally the Republic of Liberia, is a state in West Africa on the Atlantic coast, bordering Guinea, Sierra Leone and the Ivory Coast. Liberia is Africa’s oldest republic and its second oldest independent state after Ethiopia.

Liberia National Flag
  • Capital: Monrovia
  • Area: 111,370 km 2
  • Language: English
  • Currency: Liberian Dollar

10. Mali

Mali, formally the Republic of Mali, is a coastal state in West Africa. Mali, the seventh largest country in Africa, borders Algeria to the north, Niger to the east, Burkina Faso and Côte d’Ivoire to the south, Guinea to the southwest and Senegal and Mauritania to the west. The population amounted to 14.5 million residents at the 2009 census.

Mali National Flag
  • Capital: Bamako
  • Area: 1,240,190 km 2
  • Language: French
  • Currency: CFA Franc


11. Mauritania

Mauritania, formally the Islamic Republic of Mauritania, is a state in northwestern Africa bordering Algeria, Mali, Senegal, Western Sahara and the Atlantic. The country also borders Morocco since February 27, 1976, when Morocco occupied Western Sahara.

Mauritania National Flag
  • Capital: Nouakchott
  • Area: 1,030,700 km 2
  • Language: Arabic
  • Currency: Eagle

12. Niger

Niger, formally the Republic of Niger, is a state in the interior of West Africa, bordering Algeria, Benin, Burkina Faso, Libya, Mali, Nigeria and Chad. The country is named after the Niger River, which flows through the southwestern corner of the area.

Niger National Flag
  • Capital: Niamey
  • Area: 1,267,000 km 2
  • Language: French
  • Currency: CFA Franc

13. Nigeria

Nigeria, formally the Federal Republic of Nigeria, is a country in West Africa consisting of thirty-six states and its so-called Federal Capital Territory, Abuja. Nigeria is Africa’s most populous country and the seventh most populous country in the world.

Nigeria National Flag
  • Capital: Abuja
  • Area: 923,770 km²
  • Language: English
  • Currency: Naira

14. Senegal

Senegal, formally the Republic of Senegal, is the westernmost state on the African continent, located on the Atlantic Ocean. The country borders the Gambia, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Mali and Mauritania.

Senegal National Flag
  • Capital: Dakar
  • Area: 196,720 km 2
  • Language: French
  • Currency: CFA Franc

15. Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone, formally the Republic of Sierra Leone, is a state in West Africa. It borders Guinea to the north and Liberia to the south and the Atlantic Ocean to the west coast.

Sierra Leone National Flag
  • Capital: Freetown
  • Area: 71,740 km 2
  • Language: English
  • Currency: Leone

16. Togo

Togo, formally the Republic of Togo, is a state in West Africa bordering Ghana to the west, Benin to the east and Burkina Faso to the north. To the south, the country has a short coastal strip towards the Gulf of Guinea, where the capital Lomé is located.

Togo National Flag
  • Capital: Lomé
  • Area: 56,790 km 2
  • Language: French
  • Currency: CFA Franc

Countries in Western Africa by Population and Their Capitals

As noted above, there are sixteen independent countries in the Western Africa. Among them, the largest country is Nigeria and the smallest one is Cape Verde in term of population. The full list of Western African countries with capitals is shown in the table below, ranked by latest total population.

Rank Country Population Land Area (km²) Capital
1 Nigeria 200,963,599 910,768 Abuja
2 Ghana 30,280,811 227,533 Accra
3 Côte d’Ivoire 25,823,071 318,003 Yamoussoukro
4 Niger 22,314,743 1,266,700 Niamey
5 Burkina Faso 20,870,060 273,602 Ouagadougou
6 Mali 19,973,000 1,220,190 Bamako
7 Senegal 16,209,125 192,530 Dakar
8 Guinea 12,218,357 245,717 Conakry
9 Benin 11,733,059 114,305 Porto-Novo
10 Sierra Leone 7,901,454 71,620 Freetown
11 Togo 7,538,000 54,385 Lome
12 Liberia 4,475,353 96,320 Monrovia
13 Mauritania 4,077,347 1,025,520 Nouakchott
14 Gambia 2,347,706 10,000 Banjul
15 Guinea-Bissau 1,604,528 28,120 Bissau
16 Cape Verde 550,483 4,033 Praia

Map of West African Countries

Map of West African Countries

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