Revealed: The SMALLEST Country in Africa 2024 | Ranked by Size + Population

The smallest country in Africa small countries African

The continent of Africa is huge! But, you knew that already, right? Encompassing a total land area of over 11.7 million mi² (30.37 million km²), it is the second largest continent in the world. The continent covers more than a fifth of the land area on Earth. Home to more than a billion people, Africa is also the second most populous continent. It stretches across four hemispheres, surrounded by the Indian Ocean, the Atlantic Ocean, and the Mediterranean Sea. In this post about small African countries you will learn about the size of the different countries as well as discover what’s the smallest country in Africa.

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Quick summary:

What are the smallest countries in Africa 2024?

> Seychelles is the smallest country in Africa overall.

> The Gambia is smallest country on the African mainland.

> Eswatini is smallest landlocked country of Africa by size and population.

Continue reading to discover all the details and numbers…


Africa smallest country list: Let’s dive right in.

First up…

1 | Seychelles 451 km² | 174 mi²

smallest country in Africa Seychelles area population

Size: 451 km² (174 mi²)
Region: East Africa
Population: 99,406

Seychelles, an archipelago of 115 tropical islands located in the Indian Ocean, is the smallest country in Africa with a land area of 451 km² (174 mi²).

Famous for its beautiful idyllic setting, pristine beaches, marine life, and natural ecosystem, the Seychelles islands are found between 300 miles and 994 miles off the east coast of the African mainland.

If you’re surprised to hear that Seychelles is an independent country, it officially became an independent nation in 1976 after being a colony of the British since 1794. 

2 | São Tomé and Príncipe 964 km² | 372 mi²

small african countries São Tomé and Príncipe

Size: 964 km² (372 mi²)
Region: Central Africa
Population: 226,225

São Tomé and Príncipe is an island country situated right on the equator in the Gulf of Guinea. Just as the name implies, this central African country consists of two main islands. These archipelagos are found 250 km (155 mi) off the north-western coast of the mainland.

Covering an area of just 964 km2, or 372 mi², São Tomé and Príncipe is the second smallest African country by size.

The islands remained uninhabited until 1470, with the arrival of the Portuguese explorers. São Tomé remained a colony of Portugal until it declared independency in 1975, while the island of Príncipe became sovereign in 1995.

3 | Mauritius 2,040 km² | 788 mi²

Mauritius Safest country in Africa safe

Size: 2,040 km² (788 mi²)
Region: East Africa
Population: 1,275,440

Mauritius comes in at number 3 on this list of smallest countries in Africa. This Indian Ocean island country traverses an area of 2,040 km2 or 788 mi²  off the east coast of the African continent. 

The island’s warm waters, scenic beaches, and natural landscape makes Mauritius a popular travel destination for families and honeymoon travel lovers

Despite its small size, Mauritius is the most densely populated country in Africa. The population density in 2023 is 626 people per km2 (1,623 per mi2).

You may be interested to know that Mauritius is also the safest country in Africa. Click the link to check the full list.

4 | Comoros 2,235 km² | 863 mi²

smallest countries in Africa Comoros

Size: 2,235 km² (863 mi²) **
Region: East Africa
Population: 901,758

** including the contested island of Mayotte

Unsurprisingly, yet another island nation makes this list of the smallest countries on the African continent. At number 4 is the group of volcanic islands known as the Comoros.

The Comoros, located approximately 290 km (180 miles) from the eastern coast of Africa consists of four main islands. These African islands – Ngazidja, Nzwani, Mwali, and Maore – cover an area of 2,235 km2 (863 mi²).

5 | Cape Verde 4,033 km² | 1,557 mi²

Cape Verde smallest african countries

Size: 4,033 km² (1,557 mi²)
Region: West Africa
Population: 566,475

Next up, we head to the central Atlantic Ocean off West Africa to the island nation of Cape Verde. This former Portuguese crown colony consists of ten volcanic islands. 

This archipelago of islands are located 350 miles from the mainland and encompass an area of 4,033 km2 (1,557 mi²). This relatively small size makes Cape Verde one of the smallest countries in Africa by area.

6 | Gambia 10,380 km² | 4,008 mi²

smallest African country mainland gambia

Size: 10,380 km² (4,008 mi²)
Region: West Africa
Population: 2,534,487

It’s no surprise that African island nations have taken up the top 5 spots on this list of small African countries. Next up, we head to continental Africa and to the West African country of The Gambia. 

Covering a surface area of 10,380 km2 (4,008 mi²), The Gambia is the smallest country on the African mainland. Almost completely surrounded by Senegal, this sovereign nation is so tiny that it measures less than 30 miles wide at its widest.

7 | Eswatini 17,364 km² | 6,704 mi²

small african countries eswatini

Size: 17,364 km² (6,704 mi²)
Region: Southern Africa
Population: 1,181,060

The smallest landlocked country in Africa is, you guessed it, Eswatini. Entirely surrounded by South Africa and Mozambique, Eswatini measures 17,364 km2, or 6,704 mi², in size. 

This former British protectorate, previously called Swaziland, is the last remaining absolute monarchy, ruled by King Mswati III.

8 | Djibouti 23,200 km² | 8,958 mi²

Djibouti small countries in Africa

Size: 23,200 km² (8,958 mi²)
Region: East Africa
Population: 16,663,917

Djibouti, located in the Horn of Africa, is one of Africa’s smallest countries. This former French colony, bordered by Ethiopia, Eritrea, and Somalia covers an area of 23,200 km² (8,958 mi²).

9 | Rwanda 26,798 km² | 10,347 mi²

rwanda smallest african country

Size: 26,798 km² (10,347 mi²)
Region: East Africa
Population: 13,509,481

Rwanda, known for its breathtaking scenery and turbulent past, is also on this list of small African countries. This landlocked country, located in the Great Rift Valley of central Africa, measures 26,798 km² (10,347 mi²) in size.

10 | Burundi 27,830 km² | 10,745 mi²

smallest countries of Africa Burundi

Size: 27,830 km² (10,745 mi²)
Region: East Africa
Population: 12,505,296

Rounding up this list of the 10 smallest countries in Africa is the East African nation of Burundi. Also found in the Great Rift Valley, Burundi covers an area of 27,830 km² (10,745 mi²).

Africa smallest countries

There is another way to determine what is the smallest country of Africa. This is by way of looking at the number of people that live within the country instead of its size.

Here are the…


Africa is one of the world’s fastest growing regions.

Let’s take a look at these population numbers. 

1 | Seychelles — population: 99,441

Population: 99,441
Population density: 214 people per km² (554 per mi²)
Population growth rate: 1.9%
Median age: 34.2

Seychelles, the smallest African country by area, is also the least populated African nation with a population of under 100,000 people.

Here are the rest of the smallest countries within Africa:

2 | São Tomé and Príncipe population: 226,492

Population: 226,492
Population density: 228 people per km² (591 per mi²)
Population growth rate: 1.9%
Median age: 18.6

3 | Cape Verde population: 566,871

Population: 566,871
Population density: 138 people per km2 (357 per mi2)
Population growth rate: 1.1%
Median age: 27.6

4 | Comoros population: 903,026

Population: 903,026
Population density: 467 people per km2 (1,210 per mi2)
Population growth rate: 2.2%
Median age: 20.4

5 | Djibouti population: 1,013,892

Population: 1,013,892 
Population density: 43 people per km2 (110 per mi2)
Population growth rate: 1.5%
Median age: 26.6

6 | Eswatini population: 1,181,814

Population: 1,181,814 
Population density: 67 people per km2 (175 per mi2)
Population growth rate: 1.0%
Median age: 20.7

7 | Mauritius population: 1,275,572

Population: 1,275,572 
Population density: 626 people per km2 (1,623 per mi2)
Population growth rate: 0.0%
Median age: 37.5

8 | Equatorial Guinea population: 1,485,993

Population: 1,485,993 
Population density: 50 people per km2 (130 per mi2)
Population growth rate: 3.4%
Median age: 22.3

9 | Guinea-Bissau population: 2,051,795

Population: 2,051,795
Population density: 70 people per km2 (181 per mi2)
Population growth rate: 2.4%
Median age: 18.8

10 | Lesotho population: 2,171,792

Population: 2,171,792
Population density: 71 people per km2 (183 per mi2)
Population growth rate: 0.8%
Median age: 24.0

Do you know how many countries are in Africa. Full list here.

smallest country in Africa

I hope you enjoyed learning more about these small African countries. Did any on this list surprise you? 

Don’t forget to check out this post where the biggest country in Africa is revealed.

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Until the next one,


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