Tanzania, a land of spectacular beauty, and one of the largest countries in Africa, is a union (formed in 1964) between the mainland (Tanganyika), and the Zanzibar Isles consisting of Unguja (also known as Zanzibar) and Pemba. It lies on the east coast of Africa, between 1degree and 11degrees south of the Equator. It is bordered to the north by Kenya and Uganda. To the west is Zaire, Rwanda, Burundi and Zambia, and to the south are Malawi and Mozambique. It covers an area of 945,000 sq. km, the size of Denmark, France, the Netherlands, the Republic of Ireland, and the United Kingdom combined. Tanzania comprises a coastal lowland, volcanic highlands and the Great Rift Valley and includes within its territory, Africa's highest peak. Tanzania is the only country in the world which has allocated at least 25 per cent of its total area to wildlife national parks and protected areas.
Tropical weather prevails over most of Tanzania. The coastal area is hot and humid. In the northern circuit cool weather prevails from May to September. The hottest months for the whole country are from October to February. The long rains are from March to May, and the short rains from October to November. Coastal areas and the islands have tropical climate, whereas the central plateau is semi-arid and the highlands are semi-temperature.
Coffee, cotton, sisal, tea and diamonds are in rich supply and Zanzibar is the world's third largest producer of cloves. State reforms have cut inflation and the budget deficit, bringing a rise in inward investment and a return to positive growth.
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