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Tanzania Geography - 2024


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Eastern Africa, bordering the Indian Ocean, between Kenya and Mozambique

Geographic coordinates

6 00 S, 35 00 E

Map references



total: 947,300 sq km

land: 885,800 sq km

water: 61,500 sq km

note: includes the islands of Mafia, Pemba, and Zanzibar

Area - comparative

more than six times the size of Georgia; slightly larger than twice the size of California

Land boundaries

total: 4,161 km

border countries (8): Burundi 589 km; Democratic Republic of the Congo 479 km; Kenya 775 km; Malawi 512 km; Mozambique 840 km; Rwanda 222 km; Uganda 391 km; Zambia 353 km


1,424 km

Maritime claims

territorial sea: 12 nm

exclusive economic zone: 200 nm


varies from tropical along coast to temperate in highlands


plains along coast; central plateau; highlands in north, south


highest point: Kilimanjaro (highest point in Africa) 5,895 m

lowest point: Indian Ocean 0 m

mean elevation: 1,018 m

Natural resources

hydropower, tin, phosphates, iron ore, coal, diamonds, gemstones (including tanzanite, found only in Tanzania), gold, natural gas, nickel

Land use

agricultural land: 43.7% (2018 est.)

arable land: 14.3% (2018 est.)

permanent crops: 2.3% (2018 est.)

permanent pasture: 27.1% (2018 est.)

forest: 37.3% (2018 est.)

other: 19% (2018 est.)

Irrigated land

1,840 sq km (2012)

Major lakes (area sq km)

fresh water lake(s): Lake Victoria (shared with Uganda and Kenya) - 62,940 sq km; Lake Tanganyika (shared with Democratic Republic of Congo, Burundi, and Zambia) - 32,000 sq km; Lake Malawi (shared with Mozambique and Malawi) - 22,490

salt water lake(s): Lake Rukwa - 5,760 sq km

Major rivers (by length in km)

Nile (shared with Rwanda [s], Uganda, South Sudan, Sudan, and Egypt [m]) - 6,650 km
note – [s] after country name indicates river source; [m] after country name indicates river mouth

Major watersheds (area sq km)

Atlantic Ocean drainage: Congo (3,730,881 sq km), (Mediterranean Sea) Nile (3,254,853 sq km)
Indian Ocean drainage: Zambezi (1,332,412 sq km)

Population distribution

the largest and most populous East African country; population distribution is extremely uneven, but greater population clusters occur in the northern half of country and along the east coast as shown in this

Natural hazards

flooding on the central plateau during the rainy season; drought

volcanism: limited volcanic activity; Ol Doinyo Lengai (2,962 m) has emitted lava in recent years; other historically active volcanoes include Kieyo and Meru

Geography - note

Kilimanjaro is the highest point in Africa and one of only three mountain ranges on the continent that has glaciers (the others are Mount Kenya [in Kenya] and the Ruwenzori Mountains [on the Uganda-Democratic Republic of the Congo border]); Tanzania is bordered by three of the largest lakes on the continent: Lake Victoria (the world's second-largest freshwater lake) in the north, Lake Tanganyika (the world's second deepest) in the west, and Lake Nyasa (Lake Malawi) in the southwest

NOTE: The information regarding Tanzania on this page is re-published from the 2024 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency and other sources. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Tanzania 2024 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Tanzania 2024 should be addressed to the CIA or the source cited on each page.

This page was last modified 04 May 24, Copyright © 2024 ITA all rights reserved.