The smallest countries in Africa, where are they? Mainland or islands?


The smallest countries in Africa – you may never have heard of.

The second-largest continent in the world, Africa, has 54 sovereign countries. The continent occupies a total area of 30.3 million square km accounting for 20.4% of the world’s land area. The Mediterranean Sea washes the shores of Africa to the north, the Atlantic Ocean lies to the west of the country and the Indian Ocean to the southeast. To the northeast of Africa is the Suez Canal and the Red Sea.

Moyenne Island is a small island in the Ste Anne Marine National Park off the north coast of Mahé, Seychelles

Moyenne Island is a small island in the Ste Anne Marine National Park off the north coast of Mahé, Seychelles

The Five Smallest African Nations by Size

All of the five smallest African nations are island nations. These include Seychelles, São Tomé and Príncipe, Mauritius, Comoros, and Cape Verde. The smallest nation in the continental mainland of Africa is The Gambia.

The smallest nations of Africa are also some of the least populated African countries. Seychelles, the smallest country by area (451 square km), is also the least populated sovereign African nation with a population of about 94,228 people. The second smallest African nation, São Tomé and Príncipe covers an area of 964 square km and it is also the continent’s second least populated nation. It houses 192,993 people, as of 2013.

Some of the smallest countries in Africa are also some of the richest nations of the continent in terms of GDP per capita. Seychelles and Mauritius both feature in the list of 10 Richest Countries of Africa. In fact, these countries rank second and third among the African countries in terms of GDP per capita.

Seychelles, Praslin, photo tommaso-nervegna

Seychelles, Praslin, tommaso-Nervegna

Seychelles is small, but also one of the richest countries in Africa

Seychelles is an archipelago of 115 islands in the Indian Ocean and a major tourist destination. Victoria is the capital city of this island nation. The capital is located about 1,500 km away from mainland Africa. Comoros, Madagascar, and Mauritius are some of the island nations of Africa located in the Indian Ocean near Seychelles. The nation occupies an area of 451 square km.

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Seychelles, what to see, what to do and where to stay

Sao Tomé and Principe

Sao Tomé and Principe

São Tomé and Príncipe

The second smallest country in Africa, São Tomé and Príncipe, is located in the Gulf of Guinea. São Tomé and Príncipe are the two main islands of the archipelago. The islands are located at a distance of about 250 and 225 km off the coast of Gabon in mainland Central Africa. The country has an area of 964 square km.

hotel-le-duc-de-praslin Seychelles

hotel-le-duc-de-praslin Seychelles

Mauritius – if you want to go someplace exotic in style

The island nation of Mauritius is a major tourist destination. It is located in the Indian Ocean where it occupies a total area of 2,040 square km. Mauritius’ territory includes the Mascarene Islands of Rodrigues and Mauritius and other outer islands. Port Louis is the capital of the country.

Travel to Mauritius

Mauritius, what to see, do and where to stay

Comoros Islands, Africa

Comoros Islands, Africa

Unknown, exotic Comoros – right between huge Madagascar and mainland Mozambique

Comoros is an archipelago and a sovereign African nation located in the Indian Ocean. The archipelago is located between the African island nation of Madagascar and the African mainland nation of Mozambique. Comoros occupies an area of 2,235 square km and features three main islands and numerous smaller islands.

Cape-verde. lush green mountains

Cape Verde. Lush green mountains

Cap Verde – the greenest islands ever

The nation of Cape Verde is an archipelago with 10 islands of volcanic origin. The archipelago is located in the Atlantic Ocean at a distance of about 570 km to the west of Senegal’s Cap Verde Peninsula on mainland Africa. The island nation covers an area of 4,033 square km, making it the fifth smallest nation in Africa.

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Cape Verde – the greenest archipelago ever

All 10 smallest countries in Africa, the last 5 are in mainland Africa

1 Seychelles 
2 São Tomé and Príncipe
3 Mauritius
4 Comoros
5 Cape Verde
6 Gambia
7 Swaziland
8 Djibouti
9 Rwanda
10 Burundi

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