Largest Countries in Africa 2023

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Africa is the second-largest continent on Earth, with a total land area of roughly 30,365,000 km² (11,724,000 mi²) split across its 54 countries and 10 dependent territories. Africa has by far the largest number of countries located on or around the equator, but stretches far into the Southern Hemisphere as well. This combination of size, shape, and location combine to give the continent tremendous diversity in terms of geography, climate, flora and fauna, and natural resources. What are the largest countries in Africa? See the list below:

Top 10 Largest Countries in Africa (by total area):

  1. Algeria — 2,384,741 km² (919,595 mi²)
  2. Congo (Democratic Republic of) — 2,344,860 km² (905,356 mi²)
  3. Sudan — 1,854,105 km² (715,874 mi²)
  4. Libya — 1,759,540 km² (679,362 mi²)
  5. Chad — 1,284,000 km² (495,755 mi²)
  6. Niger — 1,267,000 km² (489,191 mi²)
  7. Angola — 1,246,700 km² (481,354 mi²)
  8. Mali — 1,240,190 km² (478,840 mi²)
  9. South Africa — 1,219,090 km² (470,693 mi²)
  10. Ethiopia — 1,136,242 km² (438,705 mi²)

The largest country in Africa—and 10th largest in the world—is Algeria, which spans over 2,381,741 km² (919,595 mi²) and is home to more than 44 million people. Algeria is located in Northern Africa with a coastline that borders the Mediterranean Sea and an interior that includes a portion of the Sahara Desert. Algeria also ranks third on the list of most developed countries in Africa (and first on the mainland), which makes clear the country has a promising future. Just behind Algeria is the Democratic Republic of the Congo, formerly known as Zaire. Although it is almost identical to Algeria in terms of size—2,344,860 km² (905,356 mi²) compared to Algeria's 2,384,741 km² (919,595 mi²)—DR Congo has more than twice as many people at 92 million. However, DR Congo is not as well developed and has endured significant regional violence and political unrest over the past 100+ years.

Top 10 Smallest Countries in Africa (by total area):

  1. Seychelles — 460 km² (178 mi²)
  2. Sao Tome — 960 km² (371 mi²)
  3. Comoros — 1,861 km² (719 mi²)
  4. Mauritius — 2,040 km² (788 mi²)
  5. Cabo Verde / Cape Verde — 4,030 km² (1,556 mi²)
  6. Gambia — 11,300 km² (4,363 mi²)
  7. Eswatini — 17,360 km² (6,703 mi²)
  8. Djibouti — 23,200 km² (8,958 mi²)
  9. Rwanda — 26,340 km² (10,170 mi²)
  10. Burundi — 27,830 km² (10,745 mi²)

The smallest country in Africa is Seychelles, a grouping of more than 100 islands located in the Indian Ocean. Seychelles is a compact 460 km² (178 mi²) in size and has a population of just 98,908 people. Despite its diminutive size, Seychelles is the second-most-developed nation in Africa (behind Mauritius, another island nation) and boasts the highest Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per capita of any nation in Africa. For the sake of clarity, it is worth noting that the above list includes only those nations that are considered fully independent sovereign states. If it were to include dependent territories, several locations such as the French territory of Mayotte (374 km²/144 mi²) and the Spanish territory the Canary Islands (7,493 km²/2,893 mi²) would rank among the top 10.

Largest Countries in Africa 2023

Largest Countries in Africa 2023