Angola - At a glance


Angola at a glance

Location On the west coast of Africa, south of the Equator between 4° 22’ N and 18° 02’ S

Neighbouring countries The Democratic Republic of Congo, the Republic of Congo, Zambia and Namibia

Size 1,256,700km²

Climate Angola’s climate varies according to latitude and altitude. As such there are wide differences between the deserts of Namibe and the rainforests of Cabinda. Summers are hot and dry and winters cool and rainy.

Status Republic

Population 16–21 million (estimated 2012)

Life expectancy 41.7 years

Capital Luanda (estimated 2012 population 5–8 million)

Other main towns are Cabinda, Soyo, Benguela, Huambo and Lubango

Economy Extractive industries are the backbone of Angola’s economy, which is one of the fastest-growing economies in the world.

GDP US$32.8 billion

Language Portuguese is the official language and is widely spoken. There are another 42 languages, the most common being Umbundo, Kimbundu and Kicongo.

Religion Angolans primarily practise indigenous beliefs (47%), followed by Roman Catholicism (38%) and Protestantism (15%)

Currency Angolan kwanza (AOA) (for up-to-date rates, go to www.xe.com)

National airline and airport TAAG; Aeroporto 4 de Fevereiro, Luanda

International telephone code +244

Time GMT

Electrical voltage 220V, 50Hz

Weights and measures Metric

Flag Two horizontal red and black bands with a yellow machete and cog wheel in the centre

National animal Palanca negra (great sable antelope)

National sport Football

Public holidays Fixed holidays are: 1 January (New Year); 4 February (beginning of the liberation struggle); 8 March (International Women’s Day); 4 April (Peace and National Reconciliation Day); 1 May (Workers’ Day); 17 September (National Heroes’ Day); 2 November (All Souls’ Day); 11 November (Independence Day); and 25 December (Christmas Day). Moveable holidays are Carnival and Good Friday.

Working national celebration days are: 4 January (Martyrs of Colonial Repression Day); 2 March (Angolan Women’s Day); 15 March (National Liberation Struggle Expansion Day); 14 April (Angolan Youth Day); 25 May (Africa& Day); 1 June (World Child Day); and 10 December (International Human Rights Day)

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Angola articles

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The Benguela Railway

Our authors tell the story of this famous railway, found by Dr Livingstone.

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Turtle Beach

A study has been set up by a local university to help the endangered olive ridley turtle.

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Kumbira Forest

With its forest conservation project, Kumbira Forest is an excellent spot for birdwatching.

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Related guides and other books

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