Tanzania is in Eastern Africa, bordering the Indian Ocean, between Kenya and Mozambique.
Burundi 451 km, Democratic Republic of the Congo 459 km, Kenya 769 km, Malawi 475 km, Mozambique 756 km, Rwanda 217 km, Uganda 396 km and Zambia 338 km.
Size is 945,087 sq km, slightly larger than twice the size of California, US. The terrain consists of plains along coast, a central plateau with highlands in the north and south. The climate varies from tropical along coast to temperate in the highlands. Tanzania's lowest point is at the Indian Ocean, 0 m; its highest point is Africa's highest peak, Mt. Kilimanjaro standing at 5,895 m. 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 (Malawi) in the southwest.
Just over 36.5 million people live in Tanzania. Life expectancy is around 44 years. Birth rate is on average 5.15 per woman. 8% of the population is believed to have HIV/AIDS. Literacy rate is just over 78%.
Kiswahili or Swahili (official), Kiunguju (name for Swahili in Zanzibar), English (official, primary language of commerce, administration, and higher education), Arabic (widely spoken in Zanzibar) and many local languages.
Note: Kiswahili (Swahili) is the mother tongue of the Bantu people living in Zanzibar and nearby coastal Tanzania. Although Kiswahili is Bantu in structure and origin, its vocabulary draws on a variety of sources, including Arabic and English, and it has become the lingua franca of central and eastern Africa. The first language of most people is one of the local languages.
Mainland - native African 99% (of which 95% are Bantu consisting of more than 130 tribes), other 1% (consisting of Asian, European, and Arab). Zanzibar - Arab, native African, mixed Arab and native African.
Mainland - Christian 30%, Muslim 35%, indigenous beliefs 35%. Zanzibar - more than 99% Muslim.
Shortly after independence, Tanganyika and Zanzibar merged to form the nation of Tanzania in 1964. One-party rule came to an end in 1995 with the first democratic elections held in the country since the 1970s. Zanzibar's semi-autonomous status and popular opposition have led to two contentious elections since 1995, which the ruling party won despite international observers' claims of voting irregularities.
Tanzania is one of the poorest countries in the world. The economy depends heavily on agriculture, which accounts for about half of GDP, provides 85% of exports, and employs 80% of the work force. Topography and climatic conditions, however, limit cultivated crops to only 4% of the land area. Industry traditionally featured the processing of agricultural products and light consumer goods. The World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, and bilateral donors have provided funds to rehabilitate Tanzania's out-of-date economic infrastructure and to alleviate poverty. Growth in 1991-2002 featured a pickup in industrial production and a substantial increase in output of minerals, led by gold. Oil and gas exploration and development played an important role in this growth. Recent banking reforms have helped increase private sector growth and investment. Continued donor assistance and solid macroeconomic policies supported real GDP growth of more than 5.2% in 2004.
Source: CIA World Factbook