Tanzania is situated just south of the equator in East Africa. The mainland lies between the areas of the great lakes: Victoria, Tanganyika and Malawi, with the Indian Ocean on its’ coastline to the east (Africa Guide Online 1). Tanzania has frontiers with the following countries; to the North; Kenya and Uganda, to the West: Rwanda, Burundi and Democratic Republic of Congo, to the South: Zambia, Malawi and Mozambique, to the East: Indian Ocean (Tanzanian Government Online1).
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The country is also the home to the Kilimanjaro which is withits 19,340ft, the highest mountain in Africa (Africa Guide Online 1).Dodoma is the political capital with a population of 300,000, while Dares Salaam is the countries commercial capital (Tanzanian GovernmentOnline 1). Tanzania has three main climatic areas; the coastal area andimmediate hinterland, with tropical conditions and an average of 26.6°C(80°) and which is high in humidity; the central plateau, which is hotand dry and the third region is the semi-temperate highland areas, witha healthy and cool climate (Africa Guide Online 2). The hot periods arebetween November and February and the coldest areas between May andAugust (Tanzanian Government Online 1). In regards to when the bestseason for tourists to visit is, writers seem not to have found aconsensus; some suggest the standard tourist season is January andFebruary, as the hot dry weather at this time of the year is generallyconsidered to be the most pleasant (Lonely Planet Online). While othersargue that the best times to travel is between July through to Marchfor the Northern and Southern parts of Tanzania as well as Zanzibar.And for the Western area the months from May through to March are mostsuitable for tourist activities (Tanzania Online). Tanzania belongs to the poorest countries in the world. In 2005 thecountry has a population of 36,766,356 and a population growth rate of1.83% (2005 est.), while 36% (in 2002 est.) of the population is belowpoverty line (CIA Online). However, there are various numbers inregards to this subject, and some of them even claim that it is 50% ofthe population which lives below the poverty line (Tanzanian GovernmentOnline 1). And although the numbers are still shocking, there seems tohave been some improvement in terms of the poverty in Tanzania in thepast 20 or so years. Since in 1988, according to IFDA, there werenearly 12 million rural Tanzanians, or 60 per cent of the ruralpopulation, living below the poverty line (IFDA, 1992, Cooksey, citedin Bierman and Moshi, 1997:77). The population in the mainland consist of 99% native Africans (of which95% are Bantu consisting of more than 130 tribes). And the other 1%consists of Asians, Europeans and Arabs. However, in Zanzibar the mixof populations differs, there are much more Arabs, some native African,and then mixes between the two (CIA Online). This again is mirrored in the religion represented,
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