Lindi Region

Lindi Region (Mkoa wa Lindi in Swahili) is one of Tanzania's 31 administrative regions. The region covers an area of 66,040 km2 (25,500 sq mi).[4] The region is comparable in size to the combined land area of the nation state of Sri Lanka.[5] The regional capital is the municipality of Lindi. The Lindi Region borders on Pwani Region, Morogoro Region, Ruvuma Region, and Mtwara Region. The name Lindi is an old Swahili word meaning "hidding pits", a place where Swahili people will hide to defend themselves from hostile invasions.[6] The region is home to two UNESCO World Heritage Sites, namely; Kilwa Kisiwani and Selous Game Reserve. According to the 2012 national census, the region had a population of 864,652, which was lower than the pre-census projection of 960,236.[7]: page 2  For 2002–2012, the region's 0.9 percent average annual population growth rate was the 29th highest in the country.[7]: page 4  It was also the least densely populated region with 13 people per square kilometer.[7]: page 6 

Lindi Region
Mkoa wa Lindi (Swahili)
Great Mosque Kilwa Kisiwani.jpg
Lindi Bay.jpg
Lindi Vista from Mwenge Ward, Lindi Urban.jpg
From top to bottom:
Great Mosque of Kilwa, Lindi Bay and Lindi town
The Heritage Region
Location in Tanzania
Location in Tanzania
Coordinates: 9°59′15.36″S 39°41′53.52″E / 9.9876000°S 39.6982000°E / -9.9876000; 39.6982000Coordinates: 9°59′15.36″S 39°41′53.52″E / 9.9876000°S 39.6982000°E / -9.9876000; 39.6982000
Country Tanzania
Region1 July 1971 [1]
Named forLindi
CapitalLindi Town
 • Total66,040 km2 (25,500 sq mi)
 • Rank3rd of 31
Highest elevation
830 m (2,720 ft)
 • Total864,652
 • Rank24th of 31
 • Density13/km2 (34/sq mi)
Ethnic groups
 • SettlerSwahili
 • NativeMatumbi, Mwera, Ngindo, Machinga & Makonde
Time zoneUTC+3 (EAT)
Area code023
ISO 3166 codeTZ-12 [2]
HDI (2018)0.490[3]
low · 20th of 25
WebsiteOfficial website
Dugong dugon (cropped).jpg
Juvenile Malachite Kingfisher spotted in Kakuzi by Odhiambo.jpg
Malachite kingfisher
Hippocampus kelloggi en acuario.jpg
Great seahorse
Angular glider (Cymothoe theobene) female.jpg
Angular glider
Tamarindus indica03a.jpg


Geology and terrainEdit

Lindi Region is the third largest region in Tanzania with a total area of 66,040 km2 (25,500 sq mi), after Morogoro Region at 70,624 km2 (27,268 sq mi). Lindi 's size is around 7.1% of the entire Tanzanian territory.[8] In comparison, Lindi is larger than the island nation of Sri Lanka which has a total land area of 62,732 square kilometers.Lindi Bay is located in the region is one of the largest bays in the country. The highest peak in Lindi Region is Kongowele at 830m is located in Nachingwea District.[9] Lindi has 23 islands in its territory with the largest one being Songo Mnara Island, followed by Kilwa Kisiwani Island and Songo Songo Island.

Lindi is home to a number of major rivers, the largest one being Mbwemkuru River. Other major rivers are Matandu River, Lukuledi River and Mavuji River. Some tributary rivers of the Rufiji River that begin in Lindi Region are Njenje River and Lukuliro River.

Lindi Region is also home to the Tendaguru Formation, a Late Jurassic fossil record, where a complete skeleton of the largest land animals to ever exist; Giraffatitan was discovered by German colonizers during their occupation of the territory in the early 20th century. Other fossils that were found there are the Kentrosaurus, Janenschia, Tornieria, Tendaguria, Dysalotosaurus, Australodocus, Elaphrosaurus, Veterupristisaurus and Dicraeosaurus species of dinosaurs.[10]

Giraffatitan skeleton in Berlin

Flora and FaunaEdit

Much of the western part of the Lindi Region is in the Nyerere National Park and Selous Game Reserve covering 27% of the total Lindi soil at roughly 18,000 square kilometers, equivalent to the size of the nation of Kuwait.[8] Lindi Region hosts both native African savanna wildlife and also Indian Ocean fauna. The regional bird is the Malachite Kingfisher is found in more numbers in Lindi, especially at the Selous game reserve and Nyerere National Park. Interms of flora the Tamarind tree is found in abundance as it is cultivated together with the cashew tree. Lindi is also home to many native trees include the Miombo or ebony tree as well as other common savannah flora found in neighbouring regions and countries.[11]


Lindi Region has a tropical savanna climate with the Köppen climate classification of 49 and Aw. Lindi Eegion receives annual precipitation level of 750 to 1200 millimeters, often raining in February and March during the Wet season. The average temperature is lower at Nachingwea with a monthly mean of 22.2 degrees Celsius and a monthly mean temperature of 27.7 degrees Celsius at the coast in Kilwa Masoko.[12]



Lindi Region's population in 2012 was around 864,652,[13] making Lindi the region with the lowest population densities in the country at 51 persons per square kilometer. Lindi Region despite its size is home to only 5 indigenous ethnic groups. It is the ancestral home to the Mwera people located on the central east coast of the Lindi Region, the majority in Kilwa District. Most of western Lindi is home to the Ngindo people, the majority in Liwale District. The Matumbi people are mostly found in the northern Lindi Region bordering Pwani Region. Machinga people are a small minority with Kilwa District in the eastern Lindi Region. Lastly the Makonde people are found on the southeastern corner of Lindi Region.[14] The life expectancy of Lindi resident is 63.8 years.

Religious and secular communitiesEdit

The majority of Lindi Region residents practice Sunni Islam with elements of African traditional faiths since the introduction of Islam to the Lindi coast through trade during the Swahili era in the 9th and 10th centuries. There is a small but significant Christian population. As in most of Tanzania, many urban centers like Liwale town, Kilwa Masoko, and Lindi town have a mixture of people from all over the country including a small Indian and Arab immigrant community.

Future ProjectionsEdit

As of 2019, the projected Lindi Region population was 1,004,439. This shows that Lindi Region is growing at a small pace compared to other regions at 0.9% per annum.[12] With the current growth rate projection Lindi will only add 54,240 people by 2025.

The regional commissioner of the Lindi Region is Godfrey Zambi.[15]



Agriculture is the main employer in the Lindi Region. The region is divided into two main agro-ecological zones; the coastal zone which is the main cultivation of tree crops such as Cashew, Coconut and Mango. These areas are Lindi and Kilwa districts respectively with an elevation of 0 to 400 meters. Roughly 10% of farmers commercially grow cashews for export. The second agro-ecological zone is the midlands where the main cultivation of crops include Maize, African rice, Sesame and Cassava. These areas are mostly Liwale and Nachingwea districts with an elevation of 300 to 900 meters above sea level. Rearing of livestock is still low in Lindi compared to other regions.[12]

Fisheries and ForestryEdit

Lindi Region has the longest coastline in the country at 287 kilometers long. Lindi also has some of the most productive fish stocks in Tanzania. The region has more than 2,430 registered fishing vessels (most are dugout canoes and Dhow). There are over 11,523 fishermen registered in the Lindi region. The fishing is done is organised into 28 fishing groups. currently, there are 6 groups in Kilwa district, 14 in Lindi Town, and 8 in Lindi district. Aquaculture is significant in the region with 125 saltwater fish farms and 148 freshwater fish farms.[12]

Lindi is one of the most forested regions in Tanzania with 57.17% of the region being covered in forests. 38% of these forested lands are within Nyerere National Park and Selous Game Reserve. Moreover, 6% of land in the Lindi Region is part of the National Forest Reserves. In addition, 12% of the forests are managed under village forest reserves. Sustainable Honey production is an area the government is exploring commercial interests in the forest reserves.[12]

Mining and natural gasEdit

Lindi engages in Salt mining on a local scale especially in Kilwa district, also Kilwa district has deposits of high quality Gypsum near Kiranjeranje ward. Ruangwa district is known for its Graphitedeposits. As of 2019, 60 exploration wells have been drilled in the Songo Songo islands in Kilwa district, containing fifty-five trillion cubic feet of natural gas reserves.[12]


Lindi is the only Tanzanian region that hosts two of Tanzania's UNESCO World Heritage Site, within its borders, namely, Selous Game Reserve and the ruins of Kilwa Kisiwani and Songo Mnara[16] The regional commissioner of the Lindi Region is Zainab Taleck.[17] Lindi offers attractions for cultural/historic tourism, sun and sand tourism, and also wildlife safari tourism. There is also an unexplored cave system called the Nangoma caves near Matumbi hills in Kilwa District.

Administrative divisionsEdit


Lindi Region is divided into six districts, each administered by a council:

Districts of Lindi Region
Map District Population
  Kilwa District 190,744
Lindi District 194,143
Liwale District 91,380
Nachingwea District 178,464
Ruangwa District 131,080
Lindi Municipal District 78,841
Total 864,652

Notable peopleEdit


  1. ^ "Lindi Region history". Lindi Government. Retrieved 2022-07-22.
  2. ^ "IS0 3166". ISO. Retrieved 2022-07-22.
  3. ^ "Sub-national HDI - Area Database - Global Data Lab". Archived from the original on 2018-09-23. Retrieved 2020-02-26.
  4. ^ "Lindi Region Size".
  5. ^ 65,610 km2 (25,330 sq mi) for Sri Lanka at "Area size comparison". Nations Online. 2022. Retrieved 22 July 2022.
  6. ^ Allen, J V. (22 July 2022). Swahili Origins: Swahili Culture & the Shungwaya Phenomenon. London: J.Currey. p. 93. ISBN 0852550766.
  7. ^ a b c Population Distribution by Administrative Units, United Republic of Tanzania, 2013 Archived 2013-06-12 at the Wayback Machine
  8. ^ a b "Historia | Lindi Region". Archived from the original on 2021-07-24. Retrieved 2021-07-24.
  9. ^ "Lindi Peaks". Archived from the original on 27 October 2021. Retrieved 13 October 2021.
  10. ^ Sames, B (2009). The Tendaguru Formation of southeastern Tanzania, East Africa: A Early Cretaceous palaoenvironmentof excemptional status. p. 5283. Retrieved 22 July 2022.
  11. ^ "Selous Game Reserve Tanzania (Nyerere National Park) A Safari Guide". Selous Game Reserve. Archived from the original on 2021-07-24. Retrieved 2021-07-25.
  12. ^ a b c d e f "Lindi Region Investment Guide" (PDF). Archived (PDF) from the original on 24 July 2021. Retrieved 24 July 2021.
  13. ^ "Social Economics of Tanzania, 2016 - Tanzania Data Portal". Archived from the original on 2021-07-24. Retrieved 2021-07-24.
  14. ^ "Tanzania - People". Archived from the original on 2021-07-24. Retrieved 2021-07-24.
  15. ^ wa Lindi , Tanzania Government Directory, 2019
  16. ^ MASTER PLAN, Lindi Regional Commissioner, Lindi, 2019 Archived 2021-07-12 at the Wayback Machine
  17. ^ Cashew Shipment - Samia Issues New Order, Tanzania Daily News, Dar es Salaam, 7 JUNE 2021 Archived 2021-07-12 at the Wayback Machine

External linksEdit